How Brianna and Ewan Phelan Are Helping Photographers Up Their Skillset in Intimate Lifestyle Photography

December 19, 2016

By As Told To Jacqueline Tobin

The winning image submission by Ben Walker. © Ben Walker/Walker & Walker Photographers​
Camera: Canon 5D Mark II Lens: 24-70mm f/2.8 L
Lighting: Profoto ring flash set to f/14 (“It doesn’t always have to be super shallow depth of field,” Walker says.)  
Processing: Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom Photo

As the popularity of boudoir photography continues to gain strength, Canadian photographers Brianna and Ewan Phelan are committed to helping photographers up their skillset in this genre. Their venture is designed to “elevate the boudoir industry, bring it into the mainstream and help photographers reach their potential,” they say, and the forum promotes weekly challenges to push the envelope even further.

One recent challenge winner is East Yorkshire, England-based shooter Ben Walker, of Walker & Walker Photographers (see his winning image above). “My wife Lynn and I consider ourselves intimate lifestyle photographers,” he says. “The term boudoir is too broad for the modern consumer, overused by low-end glamour photographers and doesn’t represent this new aesthetic that we [and the Phelans] are part of.” 

Walker says his clients generally approach him and his wife for a variety of reasons, including “to look and feel beautiful, to express their inner exhibitionist (which is a huge confidence boost for them) or to surprise their partner. Our clients might have a fixed and safe idea they walk in with, so we give them what they think they will like, based on their attributes, but then we also ‘wild card’ shoot for us, based on how we perceive them. Ninety-nine percent of our clients will prefer the wild card to the safe shoot, which is fantastic because they see our vision without any risk.“

While Walker and his wife prefer to shoot digital (and currently use the Canon 5DS R), he says that with really confident clients (“and when shooting commercial boudoir”), they shoot analogue film with either a Canon SLR or medium-format Mamiya.

To read the article in the digital edition, click here.

CreativeLive Video Tutorial: Boudoir on the Edge—A Video Tutorial From Brianna and Ewan Phelan

Related: Boudoir As Seen Through One UK Photographer's Eyes