I am so pleased to present images of my first transgender Siren, Ms. S! I’m honored to offer a safe, fun, accepting space where folks whose bodies are outside the mainstream can stretch their wings and showcase their beauty.
We started outside to take advantage of some beautiful spring weather:
We dubbed this “the Elrond look.”
Before our session, I checked in with S and made sure we were aligned on how the finished images would look. As a transgender person who’s also currently genderfluid, S (who prefers feminine pronouns) sometimes emphasizes the more feminine aspects of her appearance and sometimes the more masculine. Since my work is grounded in very feminine posing, I wanted to make sure that that femininity would be in line with what she imagined.
As it turned out, S was a little worried that she wouldn’t “pass” in the photos, so that feminine posing was exactly what she was looking for.
As a photographer whose values are rooted in body acceptance and positivity, I extend that respect to *all* bodies in their current forms. It’s not about how I can turn an outside-the-mainstream body into a socially-acceptable one for a day. Although portrait and boudoir photography can certainly be used that way, it’s not really the point of what I do. Rather than “I can help you fake it for photos,” it’s “by treating your body with the same respect every body deserves, I can help you see it with that respect and love too.”
Extending that love and respect to every body I work with allows me to meet each person where they’re at, no matter the stage of their journey with their own body. As a transgender woman, S may or may not choose to pursue changes to her body so that it appears more like what popular culture thinks of as “feminine,” but having respect extended to her body as it is helped her feel much more confident and relaxed during her session.
Here’s what Ms. S says about how she felt when she saw her finished images:
It was amazing. I still look at them and catch myself thinking of the person in the pictures as if they were someone distinct from myself. This is an idealized me. And then I realize, to my awe, that it’s still me. – Ms. S
For the second half of our session, Ms. S borrowed some of my studio props and we had a blast capturing some silly, furry feline poses:
Boudoir sessions can be extra nervous-making for folks whose bodies are pretty far from what gets showcased in pop culture and magazines and advertising, so I checked in with Ms. S afterward to see how she felt:
It was great! Lindley combined both professionalism and upbeat enthusiasm to such a degree that I didn’t have a chance to feel very anxious. – Ms. S
Between mild dysphoria and chronic depression, I have never thought of myself as attractive. Lindley helped see myself as someone else would, capturing both the moments of spontaneity and perfect posing that I never see from inside my own head. She understands lighting, she understands posture, and these are traits a smartphone selfie cannot take into consideration the way a professional photographer can. The window she will open into your aesthetic world will leave you second-guessing every unpleasant thought you’ve ever had about your own appearance. – Ms. S
Thank you so much for letting me capture this moment in your timeline, Ms. S.
Do it. If you’ve ever felt you were too flawed to be beautiful, you will be delightfully surprised. Everyone should experience this at least once. – Ms. S
(P.S. Body positive bloggers and business owners take note: A selection of the photos from this session is available at Diverse Stock Photos!)
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