Tacoma resident Samantha is far from the only person to take to Point Defiance’s trails with a camera in hand, but she may be alone in bringing a bunny—decidedly not of the cottontail variety—along with her.
The 27-year-old creative force behind Skellington Artistry has begun taking boudoir to the outdoors, and the resulting images present our beloved Pacific Northwest in an atypically sultry manner.
Inspired by fellow photographers’ work, Samantha called on Lupus Cosplay and Modeling to make her vision of a mask, the woods, and “strappy lingerie” a reality.
The pair met at Point Defiance the cold morning of the shoot, each feeling excitement surrounding their collaboration overriding any twinges of nervousness.
Samantha, dressed in a hoodie and jeans, felt pity for her model because of the chill in the air. But the photographer tells Grit City Magazine her model “was a real trooper! We were out there for under an hour, walked some trails and found some gorgeous areas with lots of moss.”
Samantha takes care to ensure her models posing in public places “are always at least bathing suit-level covered,” though she can understand it might still be odd for fully-clothed trail users to happen upon their shoot.
“I mean, does anyone expect to run into a lingerie-clad bunny while they’re hiking the 5-mile drive? Haha. I don’t think so.”
On a previous outdoor boudoir shoot, Samantha and a different model didn’t have quite as much luck.
“I’ve only ever had one hiker come upon a boudoir shoot outside,” she told Grit, “and it was out at a waterfall in Bremerton.”
Explaining the hiker was at the top of the falls while she and her model had already scaled down the side to reach the bottom, the two parties were within eyesight while the “model was pantsless and changing tops.” The hiker did the artists the courtesy of turning their back to the scene.
“I try to do everything I can to ensure privacy,” Samantha explained with a laugh. “Seeing the photos is one thing, happening upon clients/models in their underwear in public is another thing entirely.”
There are elements of shooting outdoors that even a seasoned photographer can’t control, however. Much like the PDZA bunny, a trio of mermaid models recently dipped into our area’s chilly waters.
“The mermaid shoot was cold!” Samantha told us. “All but one of the women were too chilly to model in the water for long.”
So far the reaction to Samantha’s outdoor images has been positive. Though she realizes “it’s not everyone’s cup of tea,” she’s also recognized, “I wasn’t meant to be loved by everyone. No one was.”
For this Tacoman, following her passion means walking the fine line of abiding by the laws while realizing her vision.
“I’m a boudoir photographer at heart,” she shared. “The confidence and change in emotion for the client is my all time favorite thing, it’s why I shoot boudoir.…Being able to give that confidence boost and sense of accomplishment to another human is the best reward I could ask for with my work.”