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Featuring Brady Doyle

Featuring Brady Doyle

This week’s featured photographer is Brady Doyle of Big Sky Boudoir in Pocatello, Idaho

 

Where do you operate your business?

In Pocatello, Idaho


Your Website


Your Facebook page


>Your Instagram account

https://www.instagram.com/bigskyboudoirportraiture/


>Your Twitter account

https://twitter.com/BigSkyGlamour

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Technical Specs:

 
Camera used

Sony A77

Lens choices

50mm 1.7

Processing Software (just provide the names of the one’s you use)

Photoshop

Do you use any actions?

Yes custom made by us.

Do you retouch and if so can you give me a quick rundown on if you use any plugins, etc?

Yes custom made by us.

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CLIENTS:

 
What most people want to know is how you market to your clients.  Have you qualified who your is your ideal client?  

While we offer a high-end photography service in primarily the northwest region, our ideal clientele is the natural everyday woman. Women that work, women that are parents and grandparents, women that spend their days worrying about others.

I’d love to add into the article any inspiring client stories you might have.  Also have you had any issues with clients that you would like to share how you resolved them.  That is always something that can hugely benefit the readers.

We have many amazing stories that we would love to share. Here is just a few that have been sent to us from a few of our amazing clients. Honestly we have never had any bad issues with any clients.

“On the surface my story may be like many other women. I’ve struggled with fluctuating weight and self esteem issues. I’m a veteran, disabled from my service, and went on after to get my Master’s degree. But as we know, it’s what’s under the surface that the true depth of a story lies. I suffered many years of intense violence and abuse. In addition to the common telling me I was ugly and fat (even at 85 pounds being 5′ 6″), and that no one would ever want me, he also had a porn issue. Because of this he forced me to pose for pictures for him, when the bruises weren’t too bad or the broken bones were healed. Doing boudoir with Big Sky has helped to soothe and provide healing and empowerment in a very real way. Pictures that I chose to do. And that showed me a side of me lovely and strong. These shoots are truly not for our partners. Although it’s a great treat for them. The real value in these is what they lend to you, the beautiful strong woman standing in front of the camera. The shoots with you have helped me lay some of my past to rest. ”

“Although I am 36 years old, my story really began a little over a year ago. When I think back to who I was just a short time ago I remember a girl who was the life of the party. She was carefree because she made the choice to not have children and spend her life travelling and making a difference in the world. She was a girl who didn’t have many female friends because she thought they were high maintenance and it was just easier to be friends with men. She was the girl who was willing to try anything once and was always busy doing something. There was never a dull moment.
On paper, this life sounds great. A lot of people might even be envious. Except, it wasn’t true. None of it. This was me, but it was a version of me who was hiding from who I really was. I was the life of the party because I drank too much alcohol in order to hide from my problems. I was very overweight and unhealthy at that time. I didn’t have many female friends because I wasn’t able to have healthy female friendships when I didn’t have respect or love for myself.

Shortly before my 35th birthday my abuse of alcohol spiraled out of control and I knew I needed to make some major changes in my life. I quit drinking and thought that this would solve all my problems. One of the first things I struggled with was finding my identity. I didn’t realize how much my abuse of alcohol had defined who I was. I didn’t quite know where to start or how to behave when I had no option but to face my problems and my fears head on without the assistance of my “coping mechanism”.

I had always liked to exercise and I struggled with my weight my entire adult life so I set out on a journey to finally get healthy. I always wanted to do a boudoir shoot for my husband and I had been toying with the idea for a couple of years when I came across Big Sky Boudoir on Facebook. I read reviews and immediately felt comfortable with Brady and Whitney. I messaged them and I scheduled a session that was 6 months away to ensure I was looking my best. At the time of my first photo session I had lost close to 70 lbs but I was still feeling extremely self-conscious about my body. I almost cancelled my session about 5 times before it even happened! I was so nervous the day of the session I sat in my car for a good fifteen minutes wondering again if I should do this. I really didn’t want to see myself half naked in pictures, let alone be half naked in front of other people when I still didn’t feel like I was where I wanted to be physically. The photo shoot was so much fun though! Brady made the whole thing so easy and relaxed. I was so surprised that I actually felt pretty during the photo shoot and I was excited to see the end results. My husband was thrilled to get the pictures as an early Christmas gift and very surprised that I had the courage to do it!

I had no intention of scheduling another boudoir session but I wanted to do one for myself. When Brady said they were going to do a milk bath photo session, I knew that was something I needed to do for me. I had reached a point where I was stuck in my weight loss and I was beginning to get frustrated because I had come so far but I was still not happy with myself. I wanted to feel pretty and confident after all the hard work I had put in. The first photo shoot I did was a pin up session so I wasn’t really focused on looking sexy or glamorous. I didn’t even think I COULD look sexy if I tried! I was nervous about the second photo shoot because I knew I wanted the pictures to be more revealing and intimate. When I went to pick the photos I wanted after the shoot I almost cried because I was so happy with how they turned out. I am still very self-conscious about my body because after losing almost 90 lbs. you encounter a whole new world of body image issues. I think this experience helped me to see what my husband sees and tells me all the time. Through this experience and these pictures I finally saw myself as sexy and confident. I saw the woman that I have tried so hard to become for so long.

It’s been almost a year and a half since I began my journey of finding myself and learning to love myself. I have struggled a lot and I have failed numerous times, but now I get back up and try again instead of hiding behind alcohol and pretending that I am fine. I have learned that I am not defined by my past mistakes and that I am a strong woman who can do anything I set my mind to. I have learned that I can love myself and my body even if it is not “perfect”. I feel like I have taken control of my life and I am able to live up to my potential as a woman. I struggled so much to figure out who I was and where I fit in. I wasted so much time trying to hide from myself because I didn’t feel good enough or pretty enough. My story is ongoing and I know I will continue to struggle with my self-esteem and I will take some steps back, but I know that I have the strength to keep moving forward now and I will continue to learn about myself and love myself. Through this journey I have discovered who I am. I am a strong woman. I am someone who runs half marathons and has a passion for living a healthy lifestyle. I am someone who is not afraid to take chances on things that matter. I am a good friend now because I love myself enough to appreciate the beauty in other women. I am someone who loves to see other women succeed and love themselves as well.”
Heather Frasure

“I absolutely HAVE to talk about my shoot with Big Sky. After waiting as patiently as I could for the day of to actually arrive, I came to the studio nervous and incredibly excited. Upon entering I was shocked by how clean and welcoming the environment was. My fears immediately dissipated when I sat down and began receiving my makeup and hair- I’ve never met a friendlier couple, they were so accommodating and made me feel right at home. The feeling of “comfortability” turned into rapture when I saw how beautifully I had been made up! And even more so when I got the chance to look through the diverse wardrobe which ranged verily in every size. When we finally began shooting I was led into a gorgeous room with the best natural lighting I’ve seen. The raw photos were so lovely I could hardly believe it!!! As someone who has experience with modeling I was totally tickled- I’ve never actually seen raw images that were SO. DAMN. GOOD. To say that I felt confident is a complete understatement- I don’t think I’ve ever felt so beautiful. Not once did I feel uncomfortable or doubt myself, let alone the skills of the team that took care of me. I was guided thoroughly through poses, outfits, lighting, and angles. The end result was magnificent. I will forever cherish these photos and in my portfolio they are definitely the ones that shine brightest. They are tasteful and elegant and show the most feminine side of me. I have to thank the team at Big Sky for making my boudoir dreams come true. To anyone who might be hesitating I say this to you- DON’T! These people know how to make you feel just as beautiful as you really are and they want to make you shine.”

“It has been nearly five years ago since I made a decision that forever changes my life. I underwent gastric bypass surgery on August 13, 2012. I weighed 348 pounds, was miserable, depressed, and unhealthy. I dropped 189 pounds in less than 18 months and still have 40 pounds of excess skin sagging on my body. Though my dress size changed dramatically, I still saw the same big, “ugly” girl I saw in the mirror every day, my entire life. Fast forward to July, 2016. A friend of mine had done a boudoir shoot with Big Sky Boudoir, and showed me her pictures. I was awestruck! She told me that it was the best thing she ever did for herself and for her husband. So, I investigated. In October, I met Brady Doyle and decided to just go for it! The day of my session arrived soon afterward, and I was nervous. There I was, getting hair and makeup done by Whitney Smith, preparing myself mentally to do something I had never before done or considered doing! The results were astonishing, and gave me far more than just a book of pictures! Brady took the first photo and showed it to me. There, on the screen of his camera, was this beautiful, stunning, and even sexy lady looking back at me! The rest of the session passed by in a blur of much the same serendipitous emotion raging within me. The complete professional manner in which Brady went about the session, from start to finish, was calming. He used no filters, and did not touch up my pictures with any program. Whitney took the canvas of my skin and brought out the beauty through a little make-up and hair curling. The pictures were elegant and very tastefully done, bringing my inner goddess to the surface with a little posing and Brady’s natural talent for snapping a picture at just the right moment. It took the talents of Brady and Whitney, the raw reality of a camera lens, and my “just do it” decision to change the way I see myself now! That to spite having saggy, baggy skin, I am beautiful, inside and out, in my own right. I would recommend to anyone who has thought about, or who has doubts about, doing this kind of photo shoot to go for it. Do it for yourself first because the power you gain from it is phenomenal, and the results are worth far more than what you will pay for in money. Money gets you the product, but it does not surpass the experience, the empowerment, and the long lasting insight to your own essence.”

Do you have a physical or digital “welcome” product you give the clients and can you share that if you do. You can give me a link or email. Thanks.

We are currently in the process of creating both a physical magazine and digital welcome package for our clients.

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SALES:

 

This is probably one of the most important things that the readers want to know.  How do you sell to your clients?  Can you provide info on your sales process and your pricing.  I’d like to be able to provide numbers on what you charge for a session and what your range is for your products, like albums for instance, but if you don’t feel comfortable sharing to much, just give me what fits your comfort level

Most of our business has primarily come by word of mouth from previous clients through our social media outlets, email, and website. We offer many different valuable sessions ranging from $600 and going all the way up to $2,000. All of our sessions include a photo album as well as professionally styled makeup and hair. In addition to all of the amenities that our packages offer, our higher packages also include a one on one professional boudoir modeling coach to help teach and instruct clients in various modeling techniques. Aside from just the included photo album, wall art, canvases, and metal prints have been great additional products that our clients have valued.

What products perform best in your studio? 

 All of our sessions include high quality photo albums. In addition to that, signature styrene matte board prints, metal prints, and canvas prints have been very popular among clients.

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STUDIO:

 
Best describe your workspace.  Do you have a studio or work from home?  How large is your space?  What are the challenges with it?  What works really well for you?  Can you please include a photo or two of it, if possible.

Our spacious two room studio covers over 1,300 square feet. One room houses the hair and makeup station, lingerie closet, prop closet and sales area. Adjacent is a large studio space that includes two vintage couches, a leather futon, a portable chandelier, and a beautiful new Cavallino King Mansion bed. The studio boasts three huge south-facing windows that provides plenty of natural light for most of our sessions. We have been excited for this newly acquired space, as it is can provide a wide variety of options to shoot from. There hasn’t been any real challenges that we have noticed with this new space and we are excited with what the studio has to offer to our clients.

Do you have any plans to change and/or grow from your space in the near future.

Since we have recently changed locations and upgraded our studio space, we are quite confident and comfortable with what our new studio offers. There are no new plans to upgrade studio space, but we are rather focusing on acquiring additional props, set pieces and furniture to continue to add value to our studio.

Do you keep strict hours of operation with your clients?

Our current schedule allows for a wide flexibility with clientele. We are fairly accommodating to our clients. We schedule shoots seven days a week at most times of the day and can travel to shoot on location or out of state if it is necessary.

Natural Light, Studio Light, combination of styles? What’s your preference? What are your strengths and weaknesses with lighting, if any.

All of our studio and on location shoots primarily use natural light. We see boudoir photography as being something that should be natural and soft. Therefore we don’t use strobes, as it can create light that is too harsh. If it is needed, we will supplement with a soft, continuous light, as we have found that natural light provides the best atmosphere to capture our signature style.

Do you have makeup artists you work with in your studio?  If so, can you give me a run down of what the rate is you pay them and how you feel about the importance of that relationship.  If you don’t use them, is there a reason?

 Since we are a husband and wife partnership, we have been fortunate enough to establish a studio that can include hair and makeup as part of the session. This compensation is included in the package, which has been something that our clients have loved. My wife, Whitney, has been professionally styling hair and makeup for over thirteen years. Her expertise in a wide variety of styles and looks provides clients with various options to choose from for their boudoir experience. Her training has included classes with the best makeup companies including Bare Minerals, Smashbox, and Morphe. We only use the best high quality, all-natural makeup products available. Having such a talented makeup artist definitely provides clients with a certain confidence and beauty that naturally shows through in their sessions.

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BUSINESS IN GENERAL:

 

How long have you been in business?  What were you doing before you started your photo business?

I have been shooting boudoir photography for over seven years. Prior to working solely in photography, I have also spent years working at a sheriff’s department, and spent time with a manufacturing company building battleships. My wife, Whitney, has professionally styled hair and makeup for over thirteen years. Her schooling and training has taken her around the globe to work under some of the industry’s most talented professionals.

Did you go to school for photographer or are you self taught?

While there has not been any formal schooling, I continue my education through different courses and classes online.

Did you always want to be a photographer or was it something that came later in life?

Photography has always been a passion of mine, even from a young age. While it didn’t become a career choice until later in life, I have personally developed the necessary skill set to start a photography business in boudoir.

What is your biggest struggle in this business?

 One of the biggest struggles that we have found is growing our business. We strive to provide a high value in service as well as high quality products that clients will cherish forever. This high value has come at a price premium, which has made it more difficult to build the right clientele.

Is there a reason you shoot boudoir and do you shoot any other genre?  If you’re excusive, and/or recently went exclusive can you give the readers some insight into why you did.  If you’ve only ever done boudoir, again we’d love to hear why.

It has been far more rewarding to shoot boudoir than any other genre. The higher reward comes in seeing the lives that you are able to touch and empowering nature that boudoir ultimately provides to women. We love to see the change that happens in a woman’s life and value their stories that they recount to us. Our exclusivity to boudoir allows us to focus our resources, attentions, and training on how to better provide an unforgettable photography experience.

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ADVICE:

 
If you knew someone who wanted to be a photographer, and could give them one piece of important advice, what would that be?

 The most important piece of advice would be to not undervalue yourself as a photographer. Try to establish early on what you want your value to be and actively work to provide that high level of value to your clientele.

Have you ever done a boudoir session yourself, if you are a female (sorry guys 🙂 ? Do you think it’s something that is important for female boudoir photographers to do?

Well, as a male, I have not. My wife, who also is the makeup artist, has a session with me and allows me to better understand the session. Her having had the experience in front of the lens helps you to better understand physically and emotionally what is required to do a shoot.

How do you feel about the male / female debate regarding boudoir photographers?  

I think you can point out potentially both benefits and drawbacks to each gender. While women can feel intimidated being photographed by men, women can also feel belittled or judged when photographed by females. Our ultimate goal is to create a fun, elegant, and comfortable setting. There are plenty of talented male and female photographers. So rather than judge quality or artistic ability based on gender, it should more importantly be based on the work of the photographer.

What do you do to avoid burn-out? Is there ever a time when you just want to throw your camera out the window?

To avoid burnout, we try to come up with creative, individual shoots. Our shoots are generally planned out months in advance which helps better coordinate and plan for customized sessions. Making each session unique helps to give variety to the work and keeps us on our toes.

What do you love about the business?

 The best part of the business is hearing the stories and seeing the changes that you are able to provide to each and every women that we are given the opportunity to work with. Nothing brings us more joy in this work than to hear clients share their positive session experiences with loved ones and close friends.

What do you hate about the business?

 What is not to love about working in the boudoir photography business?

Are you a member of any professional photo organizations like PPA, WPPI?  What benefit do you feel you get by being a member?

We participate in both PPA and AIBP. These organizations have been instrumental in providing great resources of information about boudoir, as well as networking mentors who have helped us continue to hone in our skills as photographers. Participating in such organizations also gives clients the peace of mind knowing that we are committed to the success of our business and we invest ultimately to benefit our clients.

Do you compete and do you have any opinions on it?  AIBP runs contests regularly.  Do you participate?  If not, is there a reason you don’t?

 We love to enter our photography work into contests. It is great to see other’s great artistic style and it is an honor to compete against many talented photographers from around the world. We have been lucky enough to have seen a few of our photos be selected by our peers.

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SOME FUN MORE PERSONAL STUFF:

 
Favorite food?   

 Whitney’s homemade bread Yummy!!

One guilty pleasure in life?

 Fly fishing out on the river in the middle of nowhere.

What is your favorite piece of clothing? 

 My old dojo shirt from Taekwondo

What’s one song on your playlist? 

Anything empowering

What’s your favorite movie genre? Example?

 Action, The Bourne series

Favorite shoes to wear?  

 My Boat shoes that Whitney hates lol

What are you currently reading? 

 The Go Giver by Bob Burg and John David Mann.

If you could go anywhere in the world, where would that be?   

 Ireland, Scotland, Italy…. We would love to travel and do destination boudoir sessions in a castle or a Villa 🙂

If you could go back and do over anything in your life, what would that be?

Try to meet Whitney sooner. She is just a amazing woman who i love spending the rest of my life with.
 

If you could meet and photograph someone famous, who would that be and why?

 There are so many amazing women we would love to photograph that it is to hard to think of just one.

What do you struggle with the most in life? (not photo related)

 Finding a good balance between work and family life.

Are you married, single, have kids, husband?  Is life a juggling act for you?

 Married to a wonderful, amazing woman. Together we have three children combined.
 
Who inspires you the most in life? Work?

All of our wonderful clients actually inspire us the most. Both in life and in work.

 
If you could provide one single piece of advice to influence a young person’s direction in life, what would that be

Invest in yourself. You will love yourself for it.

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Cathy Nance
Cathy Nance

Photographer and Owner of Cathy Nance Studios - Intimate Editorial Art

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1 Comment

  • Mike Roberts

    Wonderful photos highlight your skills, and the tributes from your clients are inspiring. I wish I could do it so well. Best of success to you in the future.

    March 13, 2017 at 2:10 pm