Boudoir photography

The Day I Said "F*** IT"

Not too long ago, I found an old diary of 13-year-old Juliette. Diary in which I wrote a table with my physical qualities and flaws. My flaws list was off the charts, ridiculously detailed and my quality one had one random item that I put just to write a little something there.

I used to dodge my reflection in the mirror. Maybe it sounds odd to you, after all, you have seen us pretty much half naked on our ads shamelessly and we say loud and clear how you should love and be proud of yourself.

But yeah, I used to dodge mirrors on a daily basis and I don't anymore. And you shouldn't either.

 
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Never good enough: The teenaged years b*llshit

I feel like everyone's complexes started when they were teenagers. Fanny's did too. Probably because kids can be total jerks with each other. I had never noticed that I had a bit of a belly, or that my chest was absolutely flat until some girls told me. Then, it just echoed and became a part of me.

So, of course, teenaged Juliette started random diets while feeling like crap. Did I lose weight? Yes I did. But I saw myself huge every single day for years. I hated my face as well , and had stupid side bangs trying to hide at least half of it. Which is ridiculous now I am thinking about it, seriously, if I could have looked like Cousin It, I would have.

I am very lucky that I am surrounded by a loving family and I felt confident talking to my parents about anything. Could have been much much darker.

Pretty much when I started being called "Fat".

Pretty much when I started being called "Fat".

The years went by, I was still feeling enormous. When I look at pictures at myself back then and I want to go back in time to shake younger me and tell her "WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING?".

When I was finally out for high school and went to Paris to study Photography (when I met Fanny!), it hit me: why am I making myself feel like that over some stupid comments from people I didn't even admire from years ago?

So I just decided to say "F*** It" and I gave myself a chance.

I gave myself a chance to first be okay with how I looked. Bit by bit. You can't just wake up one day and feel gorgeous after feeling the opposite for so long.

Then, instead of comparing myself to others and thinking they were a little evil because they looked so good, I started looking for inspiration in them. For fashion, makeup, attitude. I stopped thinking pretty girls were only a certain way and were part of a private secret group for beautiful girls only. I experimented different looks until I felt comfortable.

I also stopped focusing only on negative comments from a minority of people and realized that I was actually getting a lot of positive ones that I was thoroughly ignoring.

I took self-portraits. My face, my body. Just for myself at the beginning. Then it made me so proud that I showed them to others too. And even better, I started doing it for other people.

I have kept all of them to this day as a reminder for my dark times because, hey, I look freaking great and I should high five myself.

 
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Meanwhile, Fanny was doing it too. That's probably why when we sat down a few years ago to talk about what we could build together, we naturally went towards boudoir. To show you how good you look when you feel vulnerable. To show you how beautiful we see you. Yes you.

And Now?

Honesty time, I only started removing hair from my face only a couple of years ago. Old habits die hard. I am now fine with not wearing makeup outside, and I only put some when it makes me happy and not because "Ugh I have to, the people who are going to see me at Shoppers buying my toilet paper are gonna think I am ugly." Hell, I even stopped wearing those awful bras which make your boobs look bigger but are seriously so uncomfortable (side note: it actually helped me A LOT to cherish those boobies)

I noticed that I can see myself fat one day for whatever reason and not the next day, which just doesn't make sense. So I give myself slack when I don't feel good. It allows me to not hold on to it, and just let those bad thoughts leave as fast as they came. It's okay not to feel okay, you'll feel better tomorrow.

So if you feel crappy about yourself, I am giving you a virtual hug and I am telling you that everything is going to be okay. Don't let that win. Try Fanny's little exercise here and do not stay in the dark if it gets worse and worse. Seeking help is not something to be ashamed of.

And seriously, just book a boudoir session already, you'll see they are a great cure to throw your insecurities down the drain, where they belong.

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First it hurts, then it changes you.

This post is a part of our series “If I Had Listened", in which we're reached out to strong-minded women we admire to tell us about a moment they chose to trust their gut and follow a different path despite other people's opinion. Read more on the blog!

If I had listened to the thoughts of doubt and negativity in my head, I would have never had the courage to reinvent my life.

There’s something to be said about being forced to move on from a relationship that I knew wasn’t working and gaining the courage to start a whole new life that wasn’t in my plans.   

 
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I started the journey of self reinvention at the age of 39 shortly after I received my walking papers from my ex wife. I didn’t move on gracefully.  The relationship hadn’t been working for a long time really so it shouldn’t have been a surprise.  On the outside it looked like I had it all; the great career, a large home, fancy car - the works. But, inside I was empty and unfulfilled. The scariest part was leaving behind this comfortable life that I had built. Would I ever find love again at my age? How was I going to start over as I approached midlife?

A few months into my newly single life I left the pitty party behind and began to refocus on myself. I now had the chance to  live a more authentic existence and I vowed that I would get it right this time around.

What did this mean? Happiness. I was no longer going to do things or be with anyone that would make me unhappy. It was time to get comfortable being uncomfortable.

 
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At the age of 40 I left my high paying corporate job to do something that filled my heart rather than my pockets. I tried new things. I took better care of myself mentally and physically. I travelled on my own. I met the love of my life while on vacation and moved to another province to be with her. I went back to school to learn new skills and another language. A baby soon followed at the age of 42.

I now have a supportive partner who is in love with me and is proud to be by my side. I have my own business doing something that I love. I speak another language and I'm a proud mom of a 2.5 year old daughter that dances like nobody's watching. She's magic. My life is magic. Midlife is magic.

There is this saying that I love and it says “First it hurts, then it changes you.” It’s amazing how allowing yourself to feel and own the pain of hurt or disappointment can change your life for the better.

I’m now a 45 year old sex positive, body positive, queer woman who is living her best life. I celebrate my perfectly imperfect body because it can move and I’m healthy. I nurtured and birthed another human being with 42 year old eggs. How magical and awesome is that? 

Because the process of life reinvention has made me a more courageous and confident person, I decided to start a blog. The goal of this blog is to empower and inspire other midlife moms who feel like they’re undesirable, lost and losing time to rediscover and reinvent themselves. Just like I did.

I once thought that I was too old to start over. I soon realized that even if I had only one day left on this earth, I’d rather spend it happy than with sadness and regret.

People like to say that life is short. It’s really not. Life is long and at midlife you have so much life to live. Why live the rest of your life unhappy when you can live everyday celebrating it?

If I had listened to the negative thoughts in my head that told me I was too old to start over again, I would have never had the courage to reinvent my life for the better. Tackling the fear of the uncomfortable is what lead me to the bliss.

 
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I was my own worst enemy until I decided to no longer be a victim

This post is a part of our series “If I Had Listened", in which we're reached out to strong-minded women we admire to tell us about a moment they chose to trust their gut and follow a different path despite other people's opinion.

If I had listened, I wouldn’t have bloomed.

If I had listened to the voices telling me “you’re not strong enough, popular enough, skinny enough, worthy enough, relatable enough”, I wouldn’t be where I am today - powerful.

 
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Over the past 2 years, I have struggled with depression and anxiety. I battled them until I couldn’t bare it anymore. I reached for help, went to therapy, am medicated and try my best everyday to work towards healing. It seems simple to say out loud now but the path was not easy.

I was my own worst enemy until I decided to no longer be a victim. As a victim we listen to the voices in our head that trap us, suffocate us and if we allow them, they can also drown us.

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On my way out of the depths of sadness, my business has become a platform for women. A platform to allow women, like myself, to have a place to share, to know that they aren’t alone, to feel empowered and be surrounded by a safe community. For years, my business was creating and selling jewelry until I found it was no longer my passion. I found myself disconnected and that is when my success dipped. I searched for a creative muse but it just wasn’t there.

My business slowly shifted and this shift happened when I started to share my struggles. The more I dug deeper into healing, the more answers came and the more I felt connected to what I was creating - an expression of growth through a line of t-shirts. Though I do sell a physical item, it is so much more than a product - it is body positivity, a community of strong women and a place for us to heal and grow.

The hard truth is, I am MORE than enough, WE are all more than enough. I am more than a body, more than a mother, more than a wife. I am a mentor, teacher and role model. I am everything I wanted to be because I believed, because I stepped into my power and because I did not listen.

Is it wrong to want to feel sexy?

It is in our nature to want to be admired and respected. On top of that we want to look strong, confident and just beautiful in general and we are not scared to say it out loud. However, we don't really say out loud "HELLO I AM SEXY!" or we don't even dare thinking it. But what's so wrong with that?

 
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What does sexy even mean?

Some people would tell you straight up: you are "sexy" when people want to have sex with you. Period. And it's actually not entirely wrong since we have the tendency to qualify someone as sexy when they radiate a sensual feeling and a lot of time, it comes from a physical aspect.

We have met countless women and men saying "oh gosh, I am so NOT sexy" sometimes with a chuckle, sometimes blushing, sometimes with regrets in their voice.

We are in 2018 and the word sexy should and has a lot more different meanings. To us, being sexy is pretty much a way to say you are attractive and you have a little je-ne-sais-quoi.

And since being attractive is so suggestive, it means that no one will ever have the perfect definition of sexy, but it also means that everyone can actually be sexy in their own way.

That's a pretty good news, right?

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Throw away the clichés

Non-exhaustive list of sexy things according to the Scandaleuse Dictionary, 2017 edition by Capdevielle J. & Lelorrain F.

  • confidence

  • a woman's neck

  • ambition

  • nice hands

  • determination

  • kindness

  • heels

  • a smile/smeye

  • tattoos

  • and way more...

Is there any links between all of these? Not really. Maybe your partner finds you sexy when you're changing a lightbulb for that matter. Because being sexy does not fall into one and only one category. It is more a feeling, an attitude and not only the way you look.

Now that we've seen these, I can honestly say that I would definitely love to be seen as confident, ambitious, kind with nice hands, a tattoo while smiling. It brings me closer to the version of myself I want to be in my life and it makes me happy.

So if I follow this logic, I then want to feel attractive. And since all of these factors can also be considered sexy, it also means that I do want to feel sexy too, but in my own way.

And there is nothing wrong with that.

So no, there is nothing wrong with wanting to feel sexy.

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Because it makes you feel good. And when you feel good, you also do good things. And this makes you feel good too. You see the snowball effect of goodness here?

So why wouldn't you want to be sexy? 

We are getting further and further from the cliché of "sexy = trashy" that it is time to reappropriate the whole concept and turn it into something positive. off you go you sexy beast.

 

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How people's words can have an impact on your mind and body

Language is a powerful tool which brings people together and help understand each other. But unfortunately it can easily be transformed and used as a weapon. Since humans have the tendency to criticize others (because it is apparently easier than giving a compliment), this weapon put in mischievous hands can be extremely painful. It is really difficult to know the impact our words can have on others but is it so difficult to be more careful and taking the time to be aware of it?

 
 

I can say I am pretty confident with my body but it wasn't always the case, especially in middle school. I am glad I choose to go to photography school as it helped me to become self-confident.

I wish sometimes I could be curvier, taller, have thicker wrists, get more tan, have a beautiful skin… but this is my body and I cannot change it, so I decided to cherish it because it is precious and I now don’t give a freaking damn about people's critics.

 
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When your “supposed-friends” show their true colors

I always been really thin: tiny body, tiny bones, boobies which are still hiding from the world (still looking for them!) and for a long time I was ashamed of that. Of course people liked to remind me of it:

-“You look like a garden gnome hahaha!”

- “I should not talk about that in front of you, you are like what… 14?!” (I am 19 dude but thanks-what an ass!")

- “Are you not ashamed of not having boobs?”

- “Are you sure you don't suffer from anorexia?”

… I could keep going on and on.

Most of those awful sentences came from friends or people I knew and every time they broke me into thousand pieces. Until a classmate told me the worst one “your mom should be sooo ashamed for giving birth to an anorexic girl. What an embarrassment!!”.

That sentence was the last one I let putting me down: F**k that! Never again I will let words break me.

Relax, it was just a joke!

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The famous: “I was joking!”… I am pretty sure we all went through that and maybe we did it too without realizing it can be painful for our interlocutor. Do not get me wrong, as a french person I love sarcasm and bad humour that makes me laugh even though it is directed towards my body or my intelligence. Lets take my family as a an example, I saw partners or parents with their kids, pocking each other and making jokes about the way they look, their personality: "Don't take it badly, it was just a joke!” they say.

Yes it was probably… a joke but for some reason that day, those words sticked to your mind. Maybe it wasn’t the first time you heard those words or maybe you were already having a bad day and was feeling a bit down. When a loved one reminds you several time per week “how flat you are”, “how curvy you are”, “how sometimes you can be stupid", even if they say it with a touch of humour, you ended up believing those words and not in yourself anymore.

Yes jokes are funny but do not forget also to tell your loved ones every day how much you love them, how strong and smart they are and how successful they will be.

“Et mademoiselle, t’es bonne, tu baises?”

Disclaimer: Ladies and gents caution, coarse language coming.

Translation: “Yo miss, you're hot, wanna f**k?” (no kidding, I heard those words in the street).

I never really had any problem since I moved to Canada and I wish I could tell you the same for France but I would be lying. You see, France is like Tinder's nightmares in real life. A lot of men have the bad habit to harass women in the street and we heard them all. From “I am gonna eat that ass!", "B**ch I am talking to you!”, “Nice legs, at what time do they open?!"… to “I am gonna rape you!”, when you are victim of street harassment for years, it gets very easy to stress about the idea of going out by yourself. And they say apparently french women are very difficult to approach… - Cough - Really? I wonder why!

The worst sentence a guy told me in Canada was “You're gonna get in trouble with this body!”, I am not gonna lie it scared the crap out of me (I was walking in a very quiet street with nobody else around) but I played it cool and thanked the guy for his “compliment”. At some point he left after wishing me to have a great day.

Please gentlemen, think twice before hitting on a girl and watch your language!

When people make your day

Fortunately, a lot of people have the ability to cheer your day up with hilarious and unforgettable compliments and honestly those are the ones that counts. So for you and exclusively, here are the best ones people ever told us:

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- “You have very nice collarbones!”

- “Your hair smell like sex!”

- “If I have to compare you as a car, you will be a Porsche”

- “Wohh, where did you get those eyes from?!”

- “If we take my friend's legs, this table as my body and my face, would you love me?”

What about you? What is the best/worst/unforgettable compliment someone ever gave you?

2018, what a year!

It is time for…. a year overview! Just like last year, we decided to reflect on what 2018 has brought us… and it brought us a lot! We busted our butts and have accomplished more than we could have ever expected, and that is thanks to YOU!

 
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We got published on multiple platforms

Our press page has grown with 5 publications this year! Madmoizelle.com, Be The Next Her, Radio Canada, Choq FM, and Viva Media, we are slowly making it in the media to show our support towards women and changing mentalities. And we are not planning on stopping there.

We did our first business trip and it was in Paris

One of the biggest highlight of 2018 was definitely the 17 Scandals we photographed in the span of 5 days, between Paris & Lyon. Thanks to one publication above, we managed to build an entire trip, and we have met so many lovely people. We can’t wait to try again in 2019!

 
 

We pushed boudoir for older women

If you have been following us for a while, you must know that we fight every single day to encourage women to stop giving a crap about other people’s judgement. One of the battles is to break the “I am too old for this” that we hear way to often from women after 50 years old. So we put a fellow Scandals half naked in a sunflower field, because, why the hell not. And it was one of our most popular series and blog post!

 
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We took a naked vacation

Such a freaking good feeling. We took a 3-day vacation in Tiny, Ontario to recharge and we found ourselves enjoying sunbathing in the nude. The only down side is that when we have to wear a bathing suit, it feels very uncomfortable.

 
 

We started #TheUnstoppableProject

After months and months of throwing ideas around, we finally did the shoot for the Unstoppable project, which will be release early January. We are over the moon for this to be our first project of 2019!

We have been through quite a bit this year and looking back at it, it is crazy how much has been done! It is such a motivation to create content, spread positive messages and we can’t wait to grow bigger & bigger in 2019. Happy New Year Scandals, thank you for being here.

Hello, World!

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You deserve to love your body (again)

We all have "flaws". Yes, even that girl in the corner that you think is perfect, she very likely doesn't like something about her body. Sometimes they make their way in our minds because of others, or we create them ourselves from time to time. Time to take a breather and hug that body of yours.

 
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Your body changes all the time.

Whether you are 25 or 55, your body is in constant evolution. Maybe it is out of your control, maybe it isn't, but since it is likely to stay with you for a while, you may as well accept it and make peace with it. (I secretly vow to read this in 5, 10, 15 years and onwards.)

Don’t think of imperfection, think of a map of memories.

When you really think about it, isn’t your body a keepsake of everything you have been in life?

Scars, stretch marks, and other various changes, they are here to witness what you have been through and I am convinced these can all be turned into a positive outcome. Maybe your stretchmarks are witnesses of that beautiful baby of yours. Or that your body adapted itself to a new you. Scars are here to remind you that you can heal. You’ve done it before, you will do it again. And that’s a beautiful feeling.

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Guess what? You’re unique.

I have a birth mark on my neck - which I was asked a million times if it was a hickey - and I could have tried to hide it with foundation. Easy fix. But you know that, I decided it was cute and it’s even heart shaped a little. I also have a good layer of hard skin on my feet, but hell, I grip on my aerial silks like Spiderman.

Every birth marks, dimples, random beauty marks are what makes you unique. No one has the exact same body as yours and it is a great thing!

Isn’t it a breath of fresh air that, since there is no one like you, you can be anything YOU want?

Be the best version of yourself, not what people expect you to be

It personally took me forever to do anything concerning my body because I wanted to and not because my environment suggested I do or don’t. Wearing whatever I want, get tattoos, get physically stronger, cut my hair, shave, not shave, put makeup on and so on. If I feel like walking around naked for the hell of it, then so be it.

You will be much happier the minute you start making decisions about yourself for yourself. so go, dye your hair blue, wear that dress you love, stop shaving your armpits if it makes YOU happy.

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I stopped wearing bras and something cool happened

About a year and a half ago, I stopped wearing bras. Mostly because first: I don't have much to support and second: because bralettes became trendier and trendier. And guess what? I only got a positive outcome out of it.

Disclaimer: I am team small boobies. I don't have any back issues. If you do, you may want to try it slowly before burning all of your bras. Just saying.

 
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Put the stereotypes down and turn off the slut-shaming.

I started wearing a bra way before high school just to do like my friends and followed this vicious cycle for over a decade. People tend to think you are a tease if you walk around without one. Like your breasts are here to turn on people only and how dare you exposing them like that? Don't you see strangers can see your... your.... *whisper* nipples?!

NEWS FLASH: we all have nipples. Mind blown.

Between you and I, a few years ago, even I was slightly uncomfortable  when I noticed a woman not wearing a bra in a public place. Why? No freaking clue. Because, seriously, there are no reason to feel that way. I realize today how stupid it was but I guess I was conditioned to see strictly maintained breasts and BOOM, these ladies were't following "the rules". God they were right.

The best feeling in the world? Taking your bra off.

We all did it. You get home, you have this thing strapped around your torso and the minute you snap it off, you have such a good feeling of freedom that you can almost get a tiny orgasm. I did this for many years.

I remember reading more and more testimonials about how some women stopped wearing these very uncomfortable things and how no one died and the Earth kept on spinning.

It slowly made its way in my head and it hit me: why the hell am I even bothering wearing one if it's so uncomfortable to begin with? So one day, I bought... a bralette. I am not that brave (yet), the idea of walking around without anything at all still makes me uncomfortable. One step at the time.

Bralettes are LIFE my friend. They are cute, they are cheap and HOLY MOLY they are COMFORTABLE.

I can safely say now that I ditched my old painful bras for a sweet collection of these little things. And then, something quite unexpected happened...

 
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I actually started to like my boobs the way they are.

Truth is, I never really liked my girls until last year. My bras were actually a way to change their shape, hide them, lift them, you name it. Because of course, I only owned the push-ups, pretty thick, underwire bras. Again, I am team small boobies and the lifting is not an issue I need to worry about.

I was very self-conscious and wearing bralettes with absolutely no support or thickness made me see them the way they are on an every day basis. And I did better than getting used to them: I started actually liking them.

I have reading articles saying that if you wear a bra constantly, the shape of your breats is affected by it. Not wearing them allows your boobs to support themselves and they get in the shape they are supposed to be. To be honest, I don't even know if it's true, but I do believe it made a difference on me.

Don't get me wrong, I still like lingerie

I do think lingerie is awesome and can give you a boost towards your sexiness. I still have a couple of classics for when I want to spice things up and I will very likely get more. But it is not out of necessity anymore. It is because it makes me feed good.

Wanna try? Here are a few tips:

• You don't have to stop everything at once, every day. Start with a few hours or even one day a week when you are home, just to test the waters.
• Get a few bras without underwiring, or again, bralettes to help with the transition.
• Nipple conscious but ready to rock the no-bra? You can get those little pasties to hide your nipples until you are ready to... stop giving a f*ck.

I can't tell you the amount of tops I can't wear a bra with because of the design that I now own proudly. Free the boobies.

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What to do when your life is falling apart.

Do you feel like nothing you knew makes sense anymore? Your left is right, your black is white? This is kind of what happened with us over the past few weeks: our lives changed drastically.  If you feel like yours is too, maybe we can help.

The good news: your life may be falling apart/changing in unexpected ways but it is very likely for the best.

We do believe in the saying "everything happens for a reason". Whether you made a chains of decisions to get there or someone did it for you, you have two options: you sink and spiral or you do the best you can not to.

It's okay to wallow

Hey. Sh*t just hit the fan. If you think it is not going to impact you and you will keep doing cartwheels, you are very likely wrong. A good cry is a good way to relieve some stress. When Fanny and I moved in together a few weeks ago, we bought a bottle of wine, determined to laugh it up, and we ended up crying for 4 hours. But guess what? We felt much better after. So put on your ugly cry face, build a fort if you need to and go at it!

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Asking for help doesn't make you weak.

I am guilty of the "I don't need anyone" syndrome - I am a strong woman right? Haha. I am so glad that a few people stuck out for me during the dark times to take me out and distract me. And let me ramble for hours. The lesson I learned? You can reach out to people and they will likely be here you. Just make sure you return the favor when it's their turn (manners!).

Rebuild your routine

Since your life just went upside down like a neglected canoe, so is your routine. You're sad, you eat like crap, you sleep poorly, you can't focus... But routines are so important for our sanity, they bring a feeling of familiarity, which we lack desperately when our lives change so much at once. Slowly but surely, get back to your former routine if it made you happy or start a fresh one.

Try new experiences

Usually, we make tough decisions why family, lovers or friends because we don't feel like we can be ourselves truly. Are you starting to feel slightly more stable on your feet? Order your legs to move around and try new things! On top of being a great distraction, it will lift up your heart, help you find out who you really are and get closer to who you want to be.

 
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There are NO freaking rules.

Related to our current cases: we are conditioned to think we have to believe a certain way after any life events. Truth is, you have to do what makes you happy. And if it doesn't feel right to others, well that's toobad for them. Don't let a chance of happiness run away from you if it's knocking at your door.

roll up your sleeves and Take the time you need to rebuild yourself. you will be happier for it in the long run. We are sending you love, are willing to share our icecream and you can call us anytime if you feel like dancing on Britney Spears from 2008.

 

Camera Roll - April 2018

We made April rhyme with ORGANIZATION. We managed to do SO many cool things in the span of 4 weeks, I feel like we deserve a solid high five here.

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We caught our creativity back with Jessie Lam & Carla Catherwood

Remember, we wrote a post about how we were feeling in a funk because we were so caught up in administration duties. We were lucky to meet two beautiful ladies and create very cool shoots with them. Jessie Lam is a yoga master who let us cover her in flower and Carla Catherwood is the fantastic CEO of Army Of Sass and we made her fly.

ChoqFm welcomed us in their studio

We had the great opportunity to talk on the radio with ChoqFm and it was played every day for a week during rush hour, and that was pretty sweet. Thank you Ami for this! (Interview in French)

We got our first branded goodies!

Deanna Colosimo, our illustrator extraordinaire, striked again and helped us create our first branded tote bags. We are so thankful and we feel so proud to walk around with our Scandaleuse tote bags. Thank you Deanna!

We hosted our first bridal workshop: So you're Engaged, now what?

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After weeks and weeks of putting this together, we finally made it to the big day with our wedding division. We rolled up our sleeves, gather a great team of vendors, gathered our courage and spoke in public again. It wasn't easy, a lot of sleepless nights were involved but these split seconds of intense pride watching everything getting together because of us were magical. The after-show wine was the best ever.

The Boudoir Circus got new babies!

After the aerial silks, we got a chance to capture aerial hoop, chains & contorsion with 3 stunning ladies. Can't wait to show you all of these!

We started vlogging and the first two are out!

I have a more or less secret passion for vlogs and it was about time we did our own. It gives you a chance to get to know us a little better and , honestly, even though they're not perfect, I am so glad we did it, they make such a great keepsake of our adventures

France, here we come!

We are starting to plan a trip to France to meet all of our French Scandals! And while this is just at the "let's figure it out" stage, we are getting pretty excited and are really hoping to make it work!

Can't wait to see what May has in stock for us. The one thing we know, is that we're ready. And we're going on girl road trip at some point.

Thank you for your support, couldn't happen without you!

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When your passion is your job: the 'Meh' syndrome

Turning your passion into a full-time job. It's a lot of people's dream. Everyone deserves to wake up energized, ready to conquer their day with a smile and be happy to start working. We are part of the "lucky" ones, we've made it happen by opening Scandaleuse full time a year ago. Yet, being a photographer full-time (or any creative careers for that matter) can also burst your creative bubble.

 
"Submerged: Pisces / Aquarius" by  Deanna Colosimo

"Submerged: Pisces / Aquarius" by Deanna Colosimo

 

Meet your Little Muse

I like to think that we all have a little muse that follows us around. I picture mine as a mini-me who throws ideas out of nowhere. She's the one that's like "hey let's cover that model in pink glitter and put her under the rain okay? It'll be awesome!!". She has taken me on some glorious photoshoots, and sometimes, I have had to ignore her because seriously, this idea was way too insane. But the thing with muses is that if you shut them up too often, they just go somewhere else. See you sucker.

We wrote a blog post a while ago about dealing with creative funk when you are doubting your work and feel like you can't seem to produce anything good. Well this is a different kind of funk: it's the "meh" syndrome. Your drive has been AWOL, like it's on a vacation in Mexico or something. And Fanny and I have contaminated.

The "meh" wall is silently building itself.

Without you noticing. Sneaky SOB.

Truth is, we have been insanely busy with both of our boudoir and wedding divisions, working our first wedding workshop, booking sessions, finding new locations, taxes, admin tasks. There is no one else but us behind Scandaleuse, so naturally we have to take care of the not-so-fun stuff on a regular basis. No surprise here, welcome to Managing your business 101.

Anyway, it felt like something was wrong but I just didn't know what it was. I have been feeling constantly tired, my excitement for our current projects was close to the ground. The energy I had for new projects was slowly being shattered by real life, unnecessary stress and unreliable people (YES I SAID IT!), making the process a lot less enjoyable. Picture your little muse pulling on your sleeve to get attention and you flicking her away because, hey, you don't have time, alright?!.

The "oh sh*t" moment.

I was sitting in my living-room/office, scrolling through Instagram & Pinterest and I realized I was dodging any beautiful and creative posts from other photographers. Why? Because it gave me a weird feeling in my stomach that I had been shutting down for a little while. The ugly truth is that I was feeling envious. Envious of artists showcasing their awesome work when I felt like mine was just "meh". I was not looking at other peoples' work because I didn't want to see better work than mine. After all, we pride ourselves to push our own creativity limits here and this made me realize that we hadn't done it in what felt like an eternity. I mean reeeeally done it.

We had just stopped putting our creativity first. Which is super ironic, considering that our creativity is our bread and butter. It is why people hire us to begin with.

But life got in the way, we are dealing with other things that, yes, need to be done, but have been taking all of our time, leaving no room for brainstorming crazy ideas like we used to. The only moment my drive was back was when we were actually shooting with a client, I guess Little Muse is responsible for that too.

 
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It is time to grab the bull by its horns.

We have been thinking outside the box our entire lives and there is no way that Scandaleuse becomes "just" a job with standard quality. We swore to make it exceptional for every session (that's actually why we shoot in different locations) and we lost sight of it for a second.

Making your passion your career involves turning it into something quite commercial to appeal to the masses. Because hey, you gotta make some $$$, your work needs to be consistent, and not everyone wants an insane photoshoot concept.

But we need to make a crazy idea come to life once in a while. We need to do shoots for fun and more importantly: we need to make time for it. So I started my own list of super cool ideas for shoots that may not happen immediately, but are here when I will need them. I have put one into place already, and I had forgotten how much fun putting together different photoshoot styles is. It is thrilling and I know I want to live my life that way.

Little Muse is back, baby, and she's ready to rock.

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Things to know before your boudoir session

Maybe you've thought about doing a boudoir shoot.  Maybe you're about to get one done. Or maybe you went straight into "no" mode and decided that you would never be able to do it, because who would be crazy enough to get naked in front of a stranger? Buy me dinner first! Yet, like one of our lovely client said, "everyone should get the feeling of a boudoir session once in her/his life". She couldn't be more right.

 
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Whether you belong in one of the categories mentioned above or not, here is a list of things you should definitely know before booking a boudoir session (or any sort of shoot for that matter).

Being sexy is very versatile

We are conditioned to think that sexy is personified by a 5'8 woman, thin but with curves, likely with big breasts, super feminine. Wrong. I mean, you can be sexy with that list, of course. But you can also be sexy eating your cereal in the morning, with your hair still screaming "anarchy!", wearing a Mickey Mouse t-shirt.

Being sexy is about your attitude, not the way you look.

Have you ever met a confident, strong-minded women that isn't sexy in any way? No. We are tired of hearing "I am not sexy enough". There are no levels. The sexy etiquette is much better when it comes from yourself.

You don't need big breasts to go topless.

I would never forget when Fanny asked a client if she wanted some pictures topless and she whispered "I don't have boobs" and Fanny responded straight from the heart, loud and clear: "well neither do I, so what?". Spoiler alert, this lady got her topless photos and loves them.

It is the same for you if you have been gifted by mother nature on that side! Big breasts doesn't mean they should always be trapped in bras.

Hell, posing topless has even helped me to get rid of uncomfortable bras and actually to start loving my boobs just the way the are!

You don't have to look a certain way

Isn't it surprising? You don't have to be skinny, curvy, white, black, blue, tall, short for a shoot. You don't have to start a drastic diet before your shoot or lift a crazy amount of iron whereas you would never do it normally.

Do yourself a favor and buy some nice lingerie that will make you feel great with your current body.

It's okay to be nervous.

Posing in general in front of a photographer is hard, but doing it when you are in your birthday suit is worse. The first pictures will be awkward, even if you're Beyoncé. Then you warm up and boom: magic happens.

If you are having anxiety just of the thought of a session, ask a million questions to your photographers (aka us uh ? ;) ) before making any decisions. You are definitely allowed.

 
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Let go of Facetune, you'll thank us later.

We bumped into a very nice lady recently who told us she'd never do a boudoir shoot because she edits her own photos and couldn't publish one without doing so. She is making herself thinner, or adjusting whatever she doesn't like. This is exactly why she should do a boudoir session. To prove to herself that her natural body is beautiful. You don't need any sort of editing and if you think you do, we need to talk.

Bonus tips: practicing your posing is a great idea

When you're alone in your home, feel free to practice your posing. Blast your music, play around, see what you like, maybe you're happier with your left profile than the right, or your legs look great this certain way. No negative comments allowed.

So... shall we see you soon?

Hello, World!

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A boudoir shoot in Winter Wonderland

If you live in Toronto like us, you know that unexpected snow storm, while very annoying, can also be spectacular. And when something is spectacular, you can make sure your Scandaleuse ladies are there. 

 
Now picture us running outside when Fanny said "THERE ARE DEERS!"

Now picture us running outside when Fanny said "THERE ARE DEERS!"

 

We met the beautiful Jewelz on Instagram and we were blown away by her confidence. She describes herself as a body-positive and life extremist, which suits her pretty well. She's strong-minded, very kind and her smile lightens the entire room. Shooting with her was an absolute pleasure.

To make this session even better, we had our lovely make-up artist Nicola Peel tagging along to create a bold look, just like Jewelz's personality.

 
 

Last but not least, we were lucky enough to be able to shoot at the Bob Rumball Manor in Northern Toronto. Oh my goodness, the pictures of this place you can find online do not do it justice. Full of character and natural light, we couldn't get over how beautiful this manor is. If you are looking for a event venue (weddings too!) close to the downtown core, make sure to check it out. The owner Joanne is one of the nicest people on Earth. (If you are as lucky as we were, you might bump into some deers running around the manor)

We really appreciate having so many talents behind us for our sessions. It makes your experience amazing - which is why we shoot boudoir at the first place - but it also gives us the drive to keep going and keep creating shoots, bigger & bolder. Thank you.

You are making us unstoppable and we want to return the favour.

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