Inspiring Boudoir Stories – Kendall’s BRCA 1 Journey

Turn your scars into art through a BOUDOIR SHOOT!



A cancer survivor's boudoir photography session.

I sometimes sit staring into space as I process the GRAVITY of meaning a boudoir shoot emBODIES for not just my clients, but also myself.

I believe we are more than just the physical form we take in this lifetime.


Yet, our bodies play such an integral part in our existence.

Of course, there is the most superficial perspective: the physical beauty of the human form – the color of eyes, the length of lashes, the fullness of lips, and the brightness of a smile… the texture of hair, the line of the neck, the curve of the lower back, and on…

Our features give us a sense of identity. A uniqueness and way of seeing ourselves as special in our own right.


Yet, sometimes our bodies betray us.

It can come out of left field or hit us straight on.

But the blow lands nonetheless…

I don’t want to say the word. It has hit close to home and affects so many lives every day.

F- C**cer That’s what I’ll say.

However, when that comet hits, what a feat it is to not just survive it, but full-on CONQUER it. While we’re at it, let’s take it a step further and make something beautiful out of it, shall we?

I’d like to highlight a particular client today – Kendall. Kendall is such a bright light. She possesses a unique radiance. I’ll let her tell this story in her own words:

Beating cancer and thriving.

“At 45 I had a hysterectomy. Due to my family history, the doctor suggested I get the BRCA test. (My mother had lost both her breasts by the age of 33, and family history on her side ended there as she was adopted.) I came back positive for BRCA 1, the bad one. I was at an extremely high risk of getting ovarian and/or breast cancer. So I elected to have preventative surgery and a double mastectomy. They removed all breast tissue including nipples, as saving them would still have put me at a risk for cancer. I was left with ugly, red, and angry-looking scars.

I often joked that it look like the angry brow emoji on my boobs. So I began looking into having cover-up tattoos. I met with a tattoo artist, Amanda Herren, who was interested in getting started doing mastectomy cover-ups. I left the whole design and colors up to her. Of course, she asked what I liked and what colors I liked, and she knocked it out of the park.

Gorgeous tattoos! Even so, I felt like I’d had all of my femininity stripped away. I didn’t see myself as sexual, I had no female parts left. I thought for my 50th birthday, maybe a boudoir session might help. Oh my goodness, did it ever! It is wonderful to feel sexual again. My husband has opened up the email that has the proofs so many times, one would think he is a little obsessed. Nova, thank you so much for bringing my feminine side back.”


A BRCA 1 survivor turned her scars into art through boudoir photography.

I am sometimes quite overwhelmed and at a loss for words when I feel the weight of each client’s experience and what it means to them. GRATEFUL. That is the word that comes to mind. I’m so very grateful for the trust clients generously extend and just to be a part of their journey, no matter how brief.

Our relationships with our bodies are a lifelong journey. Some years may be more challenging than others. But the relationship we have with our bodies is just that – a relationship. It deserves time and attention and special care… it deserves love. We deserve love. From others, yes. But, especially from ourselves. I’ve said this to many clients – loving ourselves is a practice. It’s an act. We must speak to ourselves with love. We must do things for ourselves with love – anything from 15 minutes of extra sleep in the morning, to doing our nails, to yes – capturing ourselves today and celebrating our unique beauty in this physical form, and all the bumps and bruises…and complicated surgeries, and pain, and recovery, and scars left behind.

Boudoir photoshoot by Lilac Dream Boudoir.

These are just a few of the dozens of stunning images from Kendall’s photoshoot.

Kendall, thank you for sharing your story with me and allowing me to share it with others.

I am deeply moved, grateful, and in awe… I am INSPIRED.


Empowering photo shoot with Lilac Dream Boudoir. Confidence-boosting portrait photo session with Lilac Dream Boudoir.

Portraiture by boudoir photographer Lilac Dream Boudoir.

See more from Lilac Dream Boudoir here:


Instagram @lilacdreamboudoir

Facebook @lilacdreamboudoiraz

Private VIP Facebook Group @lilacdreamboudoirvipparlour

Amanda Herren Tattoo Artist @amandaherrenartworks


Ready to book your own boudoir shoot? Email me at or call/text me at (480) 571-2066. I’m looking forward to hearing from you!

  1. Kendall says:

    You leave me speechless 😊 what an honor to have met you and your amazing crew! Thank you is not enough. You are a treasure and an advocate, to prove we all have a beauty that begins with the glow within.

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