Recently, I quietly made my 30th trip around the sun. There was a time I would have spared no expense on a self-indulgent party - costumes required to get the kegs flowing. Now, before you go thinking this is a story on how I have mellowed out or no longer need a good excuse to get in full costume contest mode, I assure you this blog is about something entirely different. I am a Leo, after all. I will never outgrow throwing a bitchin' costume party.
But this year I had a rather sleepy 30th birthday. No "Dirty Thirty" shenanigans ensued. I spent the morning dealing with health issues and meeting with my real estate lawyer to go over contracts. I then had a mellow lunch with my mother and boyfriend, followed by a window shopping trip at Home Depot. I know it sounds pretty epic, huh? The truth is that this year, I was so content with how everything in my life was going, the fact that I was turning thirty made little impact on me. I didn't feel anxious, overwhelmed, overly-excited, or any of those other feelings one gets with a milestone year. When I sat back and thought about my rather restful and somewhat lame thirtieth orbit, I began to realize just how much certain things have changed in my life.
The most important and obvious change I discovered during my reflection was that my confidence and self-love has skyrocketed. I realized that I had spent the better part of my late teens and early to mid-twenties worrying about how I looked and if I was good enough. Was I attractive enough? Skinny enough? Curvy enough? Was I smart enough? Was I employable?
Turns out I had spent the better part of 10 to 15 years worrying. With that much worry, it's a wonder I don't look 60 right about now.
It was like I was constantly trying to prove something. I thought I was trying to prove these things to other people but I discovered I was actually trying to prove it to myself. I only worried about those things because I thought I had to. Society told me I needed to care. It turns out that I didn't. So one day I asked myself, "if your opinion is the only one that matters, why can't you just change your standards that you hold yourself to?"
So I did.
I began to let myself know it was OK that I didn't lose weight like some women did.
I have health issues that can't be fixed, only managed, and I can deal with that.
I started wearing clothes that made me feel happy and sexy. Not for anyone else.
I started eating what I wanted to eat and nourished my body with quality food.
I stopped having panic attacks in the fitting room
I started my own successful photography business and quit my office job.
I started photographing women of all body types and bringing them joy and confidence.
I did all of that and so much more. Me, myself, and I. I proved to the only person who's opinion I cared about that I had the right stuff; that I was worthy of love and acceptance. Today I am able to proudly say that I am a body-positive, confident, independent, empowered, and intelligent woman!
I worked my ass off (figuratively as you can see) to become a better version of that girl who used to look in the mirror and list the things that needed fixing. The thing that REALLY needed fixing was my soul and it is on the mend. This will be a life-long journey toward self-love and in another thirty years from now, I know I will have discovered so much more about myself and the powers I possess.
I wish you all the power to find yourself, to love yourself with all your heart, and accept that you are perfect!
This babe got me, and I got her. We were bold, free, sexy and alive. Boudoir sessions bring out our inner spirit animal. Ms. C said everyone thinks she's the sweet and nice girl and she wanted her photos to show her badass side. We had no problem getting that out of her.
I think all I need to say about this session is, Rock and Roll!
"Why did you decide to get married in Colorado?”, I ask every one of my brides. They all respond with variations of the same thing, “We came for the mountains. We came for the adventure. Southwest Colorado has so much to offer. You are never far from the mountians or the desert”.
That got me to thinking about all our adventurous brides and creating an ever more breathtaking experience for them. When couples come to Durango to get hitched they often plan many adventurous events and activities the week of the wedding to truly experience all our area has to offer. I wanted to create a completely unique experience for our brides.
That’s why we are now offering Adventure Bridal Sessions!
These specially-priced packages are available to Alexi Hubbell Photography wedding clients.
Hows It All Work?
You may select between editorial/fashion/documentary style, full-on boudoir/fine art nude, or both!
Packages are available to all current/new AHP wedding clients
Your package total can be added to your wedding package and can be paid off in the same way as your wedding package
You can choose to have a separate invoice and payment plan if this is a surprise for your partner
You can choose to pay for your package in-full or make payments (with a $150 down payment) up until 30 days of the wedding
Images become available after the package has been paid in full
If you are a bride getting married out of the Durango area and you have hired us to travel, we can plan your session for your wedding day, wherever we may be.
When Should I Schedule My Adventure Session?
You may schedule your session anytime before the wedding and up to 2 weeks after
Products are available 2 weeks after you pick your images
You may schedule a session when you are in the area for the planning stages of the wedding (same for engagement photos and it helps us get to know each other)
If you live in the area you may have more options for scheduling than destination brides
You may also schedule your session for the week of the wedding or day-of (see packages for day-of options)
Week-of and day-of products and images are available after the wedding. Day-of sessions are only offered indoor unless your venue or getting ready area has a space for us to shoot at outside.
What Should I Wear?
Whatever you desire
Bridal accessories/wardrobe like hair pieces, vales, garters, bridal intimate, and even the gown.
Another fabulous gown
Hiking boots/athletic shoes and flip flops for our small treks
Sunscreen and Sunglasses
Overclothes that are appropriate to the season and our crazy Colorado weather
Bridal Adventure Session Packages
Add-ons and upgrades such as additional locations, all day shoots in harder to get to areas, additional images and book pages, Fine Art Italian leather albums, and Retro Viewfinders are available.
Let's get started planning your Durango bridal dream session!
Fill out the form below!
We are searching for an outgoing, social-media-savvy woman to be the face of Alexi Hubbell Photography AKA Durango Boudoir, for the remainder of the 2018 calendar year! Applicants should be ages 21-55 with an active social media presence and large local following.
We are looking for a personable, body-positive, passionate, extroverted woman who will be proud to make her boudoir photos public via her own social media accounts.
ALL sizes and shapes welcome! NO professional models needed! In fact: a brand ambassador is not at all the same as a model! The ideal brand ambassador has connections in the community and knows other women that would benefit from our services - sharing messages of hope and empowerment with our images. If you are looking to build your modeling portfolio, please do not apply! You may send us an email requesting to be put on a model list if that is what you are hoping for. We are looking for women that care about our message and helping women to love their bodies.
If you are selected for this opportunity, you’ll get free photo shoots and limited free digital images, plus branded social media images, discounted print products, and commissions for booked referrals.
You will be required to post our photos and rep our brand through social media and in-person networking. You will also be required to be active in our facebook group and other our Facebook pages. We may also ask you to join us at studio events and expos to meet other women and share your experience.
I want us to be a team and invest in each other! Please read the rules and follow the submission guidelines below.
Rules to Enter:
1. You must be *local*. You must live in Durango, Mancos, Cortez, Farmington, Dolores, Aztec, Ignacio, Bayfield, Pagosa metro areas. This also means you are able and available to get yourself to my studio in Durango and also do outdoor sessions at various locations, at least 2-3 times during the year.
2. You must be willing to sign a full model release.
3. You must be over the age of 21.
4. You must be comfortable posing in lingerie and posing for nudes.
5. You must be female.
6. You must be reliable.
You will be wearing a combination of your own outfits and our studio wardrobe. We may have 1 or 2 creative shoots with themes.
DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS IS APRIL 1ST, 2018. Brand ambassadorship will run from April 1, 2018 – December 31, 2018.
ALL applicants must fill out the form below.
You will be contacted by Alexi Hubbell Photography after the submission deadline of April 1st, 2018
Men assume women dress a certain way to appeal to their wildest desires and fantasies. I don't know about you, but I wouldn't wear an outfit I cared nothing for simply because a man liked it. They are an afterthought. Or no thought at all. Just as women do not get beautiful photos of themselves to appeal to a man's wet dreams, but to our own inner desires to be seen and see ourselves as the goddesses we are; the goddesses that go unnoticed. When will they realize that we don't do it for them? We do this for US.
How often are women asked what they were wearing after an attack? How often are we cat-called while walking down the street, feeling pretty and free? How often do unwanted advances come your way because of something you wore?
In honor of Women's History Month, I would like to share with you a monologue that touched me on a very personal level from the incredible Eve Ensler, as heard in The Vagina Monologues:
My Short Skirt by Eve Ensler
It is not an invitation
that I want it
or give it
or that I hook.
My short skirt
is not begging for it
it does not want you
to rip it off me
or pull it down.
My short skirt
is not a legal reason
for raping me
although it has been before
it will not hold up
in the new court.
My short skirt, believe it or not
has nothing to do with you.
My short skirt
is about discovering
the power of my lower calves
about cool autumn air traveling
up my inner thighs
about allowing everything I see
or pass or feel to live inside.
My short skirt is not proof
that I am stupid
or a malleable little girl.
My short skirt is my defiance
I will not let you make me afraid
My short skirt is not showing off
this is who I am
before you made me cover it
or tone it down.
Get used to it.
My short skirt is happiness
I can feel myself on the ground.
I am here. I am hot.
My short skirt is a liberation
flag in the women's army
I declare these streets, any streets
my vagina's country.
My short skirt
is turquoise water
with swimming colored fish
a summer festival
in the starry dark
a bird calling
a train arriving in a foreign town
my short skirt is a wild spin
a full breath
a tango dip
my short skirt is
But mainly my short skirt
and everything under it
This is why I chose to be a boudoir photographer:
"I’ve been insecure with my body my entire life. My weight has fluctuated from dangerously thin to overweight and finally now, back to a healthy weight.
Durango Boudoir has helped me regain my confidence. I cannot get over how beautiful these pictures are. Alexi, you are truly an amazing human for helping me on this journey.
Here I am. And I feel fucking beautiful." - Miss H
We all have our insecurities. It's time to take back our confidence. It's time to rise up. It's time to take over the world with body positivity! Thank you, my dear for sharing your story!
I feel pretty confident in saying that 2017 was the Year of Women. This was a no bulls**t type of year. This year, women took a stand, spoke their truths, and made impacts in various social, political, and intellectual areas. 2018 is already proving to keep rolling right along for us badass mamas. I’m sure by now we all have seen the Golden Globe speeches and, if not, google it now! I mean, Oprah’s speech? Can I get an amen?!
I know our journey as women of the world will be long and riddled with obstacles in the years that follow. I believe that movements and sociopolitical change, like what we have witnessed in the last year, would not have happened without a whole lot of confident, self-accepting women, who came together to speak their truths.
With that in mind, let us focus on a few things to keep us women headed in the right direction this year.
Here's an awesome list of 5 things we can put into practice, to ensure we have a totally bitchin’ 2018:
1. Be Nice to Yourself
Say what?! I know. Easier said than done, right? But I'm going to be firm on this one. For too long, we women have built others up while simultaneously, tearing ourselves down. Being kind to yourself is the hardest suggestion to put into practice and the most important. Building a confident-self and achieving acceptance and compassion for the phenomenal creature that is you, is not an easy objective. There are no shortcuts. But, to begin in the right direction, start each morning by telling yourself one thing you love about YOU. It helps to look in a mirror while doing this. Next try to block negative feelings and thoughts you have toward yourself as soon as they enter your brain. If you are about to call yourself stupid or fat, stop right away and try to really practice mindful self-love; replace those negatives with a positive. If you wouln't say it to a friend, don't say it about yourself.
As Sarah Silverman tells her friends anytime they say something bad about themselves, "why would you say that about my friend?".
2. Surround Yourself with Badass Women
I'm not implying you go out and get a Harley and only hang out with biker babes. But I wouldn't judge you if you did 'cause biker babes are pretty badass and if they share in your core beliefs, that's where it's at. What I mean is, make sure you surround yourself with women who know their worth, who strive for greatness, who will collaborate with you on creative endeavors, who share your pursuit of passion, and who generally, know what it means to live a full life. That's badass. Try joining workshops, book clubs, writing clubs, pottery classes, or take dance lessons. Just get out their and meet some rad chicks. If your town doesn't offer activities you enjoy, create your own group or workshop and mindfully attract the right people to you.
3. Stop Comparing Yourself to Others
We need to go into this new year with our heads held high. We need to say, “here I am, world! I’ve got something to offer”. We cannot do that if we are still comparing ourselves to other women. Your body, your career, and your choices are your own. You need to own them and embrace them. When we compare ourselves to other women we are saying that we are not enough, that the grass is greener over there, that those other women have something we need. I implore you all to give comparison a rest this year. Start focusing on improving yourself for you. Set goals only you want to reach. Individuality is what will set you apart and give your life a purpose. The world does not need you to be like everyone else. Stand out from the crowd and embrace your uniqueness. Stop comparing with other women and start collaborating with them instead.
Treat yourself the way you want to be treated. See yourself the way you want to be seen.
4. Accept Compliments
This goes back to number one on our list: be nice to yourself. Part of being kind to ourselves is allowing others to be kind to us as well. The next time someone tells you that you did good on an assignment or that you look particularly lovely that day, don’t respond with a put-down. Instead of saying, “I could have done better” or “I didn’t even have time to do my makeup today”, simply say, “thank you, I appreciate that”. Then, take a deep breath and take that in. Hold onto that positive energy and store it up in your confidence reserve. We need to learn to start accepting that we are good, smart, pretty, funny, or kind. When people are paying you a compliment, they are reflecting what they see back at you like a mirror. Accept the fact that they see something worthy of praise. Don’t let the fear of being narcissistic and egocentric get in the way of accepting a kind word from another. Like I said before, we build others up all the time...take the compliment, dammit!
5. Speak Your Truth
I feel like I could lead a congregation here at this point. Can I get another amen?! Every time I hear a women speaking her truth, I’m usually raising my hands to the sky and shouting, “preach, girl. Preach!” When we share our experiences with others we become storytellers. When we share our struggles, our journeys, our knowledge, and our convictions we are giving power to ourselves and others who are listening. We connect to people we never knew and open doors full of endless possibility. It can be downright terrifying at first to put yourself out their, exposed to the world, but you never know who may have a shared experience or similar story to tell and may have been too afraid to stand up and tell it. By telling your truth, you are empowering not only yourself, but you are empowering others to do the same. There is much strength in truth, and in numbers. We all have stories. We all have truths. What’s your truth? Go tell it.
Now, go and grab 2018 by the ... horns!
We are in the process of creating a small, half day workshop to learn how to cultivate our confident selves! We are looking at dates in March, 2018 and would love to see all of you there!
Stay tuned for details!
And until then...
you are smart
you are worthy
you are beautiful
you are enough