Defeating Your Own Worst Critic | Baltimore Boudoir Sessions | Shayna Hardy Photography | Boudoir, Headshot & Family

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There are only a handful of times in life where circumstances present you with the ability to create a gift for someone else, which is also an amazing one for yourself. Boudoir is one such gift!

“I’ve always wanted to do one, and when my husband turned 40, I decided it was a good time! But this wasn’t just a gift for him; it was also a gift for me and building my self-confidence.”


Whether it is for your wedding night or celebrating an anniversary or birthday, a boudoir session is a truly personal gift. Partners are usually not only blown away by the portraits, but they are sometimes surprised that you had them done! However, the true gift to both of you is the renewed sense of empowerment and confidence that you will carry with you after your session.

“If I can do something like this at a time in my life where I feel blah, have gained weight, and not necessarily confident with my new figure/curves, then anyone can do it! It lifts your confidence up. We are our own worst critics of our bodies. It helps to see yourself in a different light, and you learn to love yourself again- no matter what shape or size you are.”

Ashley says this so well: WE ARE OUR OWN WORST CRITICS! 

This could not be more true for most of us. The world often tells us what is beautiful, a certain size, a certain hairstyle, etc. The truth is that we are all gorgeous, right here, right now. Even, as Ashely points out, if you feel like you’ve gained weight, boudoir does help you see all of you in a new, stunning way. Having said that, looking through Ashley’s session, all we see are gorgeous curves.

“I was very anxious (good anxious) to get started and excited! I wasn’t nervous at all. I felt very prepared for the shoot, and Shayna’s communication and recommendations were super helpful. Doing the video chat before the shoot also helped and answered any questions that I had.”


Communication is truly the key to creating a relaxed space where you can focus on letting go of any anxieties or fears and embrace the pampering and posing. I love the video chats because it gives me some insight into what a client is looking for and gives me a glimpse into their personality. All of this will go into the wardrobe and set selection, as well as the posing.

“I wouldn’t change a thing! The best part was feeling beautiful in front of a camera again. I haven’t taken many pictures of myself because I’ve been so ashamed of my weight gain. So it was nice to feel beautiful again.”

I love love love that Ashley left our session feeling as beautiful as she truly is. It’s a fantastic gift to be able to mirror back the glow, the light, and exquisiteness a woman has to her. She was radiant in every outfit, and we had a blast creating her portraits!

If you are curious about a session for yourself lets connect HERE!

Defeating Your Own Worst Critic | Baltimore Boudoir Sessions