You are in for a treat this week as our staff coaxes the photographer out from behind the scenes and puts her in front of the camera, so to speak, for a special interview. She has an exquisite eye for detail and a passion for celebrating the beauty in every body. Let’s get to know the woman who creates the magic at Photography by Krisleen… Krisleen Jones.
- Anyone who has interacted with you will see you have a passion for pin-up. Where does that interest come from?
- How did your pin-up passion evolve into boudoir photography?
- So obviously there are other boudoir photographers out there. What sets you apart?
- How do you create a sense of comfort for your clients during a photo session?
- Any projects coming up that you’re excited about?
Anyone who has interacted with you will see you have a passion for pin-up. Where does that interest come from?
I fell in love with the pin-up style when I first saw photos of my mother-in-law from the 1940s. She was wearing those cute clothes that I absolutely loved and, in one, was sitting on a bench with her dress pulled up so you could see her legs. She didn’t have stockings on, but it was very feminine and sensual, even though she wasn’t really showing much.
The history of the pin-up style stems from women coming into their own sense of existence and empowerment. By keeping this tradition going I feel like I’m honoring what our grandmothers, and the women before them, went through… to give us the right to vote, to own our own property, work outside our homes and have our own money. All the things they went through and sacrificed… sometimes I worry we take it for granted.
I think that, secretly, everyone wants to be a pin-up girl.
How did your pin-up passion evolve into boudoir photography?
I was having some weekly interaction with a group of women who admired my pin-up clothes & hairstyle a few years ago. One day they asked if I would take some photos of them in my clothes alongside the hot rods that my husband builds. As a photographer, I was excited to have willing subjects!
After I took the pictures, they were undressing and commenting on the pretty, vintage underwear I had lent to them, admitting that they felt super sexy. When they asked if I would snap a few more shots of them as they were undressing I was up for the adventure, but I had never planned on taking sexy pictures! I ended up really enjoying it because I could see their confidence and excitement growing. That’s when I realized I wanted to do more of this.
So obviously there are other boudoir photographers out there. What sets you apart?
You know, I’m really passionate about empowering women, but I’m starting to feel like the word ‘empowerment’ is overused. Like, maybe it’s become a marketing tool? I truly care about the whole person and how that person leaves their experience changed. I’m not just snapping photos, I’m creating art that they will have for the rest of their lives, that will get passed down in history just like the portraits that initially inspired me.
Some photographers don’t believe in editing, and that’s their style and their right, I personally don’t understand it. Blemishes and cellulite aren’t permanent parts of your body, so why would I want to capture that forever? I believe in “natural”, but editing imperfections is the same as applying concealer before you leave the house.
I want to capture the essence of a person, to show their strengths and vulnerabilities. They could have their friend or partner snap a picture of their unedited bum at home, right? That’s not what people are coming to me for. I edit, yes, but in a way that is beautiful and believable. However, If a client would prefer no editing, I will honor their request, they are beautiful either way.
How do you create a sense of comfort for your clients during a photo session?
A lot of it is the build-up to the session. I work with clients for weeks, sometimes months, before we finally get to work. They get to know me, trust me, and believe in me.
To make sure that no underwear lines are visible during our session, I have clients undress completely and wear a satin robe that feels sensual against their skin while they are having their hair and makeup done. This eases them into the reality of being unclothed around us. My assistants and I will sit and chat with them when we’re finished prepping their wardrobe. We’re visiting with them, letting them talk about themselves, and sharing parts of our lives. We are building a relationship with our client and that, in turn, creates trust.
I always think of my artwork as a tool, but I’m all about the experience. When you walk into my studio you won’t just see images on my walls of strictly bikini-perfect bodies, but bodies of all sizes. It’s welcoming. There is nothing ugly on my walls because I am proud of all the humans I get to capture: big bums, tight bums, small chests, large breasts, soft bellies… there’s nothing that isn’t beautiful.
I will always capture your beauty, and that seems to make people feel comfortable from the beginning.
Any projects coming up that you’re excited about?
Because my typical Goddess Experience is so immersive, I can’t really do more than one session a week. So, I’m working on some other sustainable ways to create artwork for families and brides. I’m still working on the details, but I really want to create a way to celebrate with your bridal party beyond the typical bachelorette party. I’m also working on maternity & newborn packages where you will come in for a maternity session and return when your baby is 7-10 days old for newborn photos. I’ll definitely announce when I’m ready to roll that out because I’m really excited about it.
Thank you, Krisleen, for sharing where your love of boudoir photography comes from and for creating a safe space where we can explore our vulnerabilities. The art you create is a powerful reminder that we all deserve to look and feel beautiful in an authentic way to be remembered for our true selves.
We can’t wait to see what you create in the future.