When we came across Toronto-based photographer Tiomi of Blair Ann Photography Studio there was something very special with what she was capturing through her lens. There’s a certain confidence and elegance that radiates with every image she puts out. When we chatted with her it was pretty clear that she too deserves to have the spotlight.

Tiomi doesn’t just offer editorial-worthy images of her subjects. She also offers an experience and exercise in self-confidence and positive affirmations that comes from the heart. In her latest project she did a call-out for women over 40 years of age to participate in a series of photoshoots.

Her intention was to provide a platform for women to see themselves for who they. Who they are apart from the many hats that society expects of them as women. This caught our attention as we are heading into the month IWD recognition. Now she’s pushing forward with even with more women.

Tiomi just launched her 50 & FABULOUS PROJECT.

She’s currently searching for 50 women over the age of 50 who would like to empower themselves through a contemporary beauty portrait session. You can read all about it on her site https://www.blairannstudios.com/50-and-fabulous

“I am a mother, a daughter, a sister, a friend, a wife and a business person who juggles life everyday!” said Tiomi.  “We are not singular, we are complex, sensual, desirable and vibrant beings. I wanted to showcase our beauty and tell our stories.”

Being photographed by a professional photographer can be intimidating. Tiomi makes her photo sessions fun and considers it as a self-discovering experience. “To have your essence beautifully documented, visually presented and reflected back to you is a beautiful feeling,” said Tiomi.

From this project of photographing 50 women of all ages she noticed a collective desire to connect as women and to be seen. “We want to feel beautiful, heard and understood. That’s the energy I hoped to create during my portrait sessions. I wanted to hold a space for my clients without judgement, so their light can shine through.”

In these times, we’re flooded with social media images.

It’s hard not to compare our lives with others whether we admit it or not. But these women aren’t doing this for the social media likes and she’s clear about that. They are doing this for themselves. She reminds us that what we see on TikTok and Instagram may look perfect but there’s often a lot that happens behind-the-scenes even when they appear “real”.

“We are all human and we are all the same,” said Tiomi. “The packaging may be a little different sometimes on the outside. Celebrities, models, actors & actresses are often masters of their body language and micro expressions, combined with professional hair, makeup, styling and beautiful garments, you create a visually beautiful scene. However, understand that this is designed, crafted, and not by accident.”

Tiomi tells us she has 2 young daughters, Blair and Ann. She hopes her work will help guide and shape their view of the world and themselves in a positive way. “I hope they can understand that outer appearance is the practical way of conducting and navigating our world and society, i.e dressing appropriately for the environment and those standards and trends are constantly changing, however, it does not equate to their self value.”

When it comes to taking photos many of us are really not that confident in front of a camera. What tips does she have for us?

“I’ve learned from my years being a portrait photographer that the discomfort of being in front of the camera comes from the lack of visual feedback with a hint of fear of the unknown. For example, when you are looking at yourself in the mirror, you have visual feedback, you can adjust and move according to that visual feedback, it is not as easy to do that when standing in front of the camera.

A large portion of what I do during the photoshoot is posing guidance, I show my clients how to move their bodies by mirroring me,” said Tiomi. She also share many tips and tricks on her social media through reels and videos @blairannembrace — Definitely worth checking out!

So what’s her secret in making all her “models” look so confident?

She explains, “A photographer captures the way they view and see the world! It’s very simple for me, I see my clients this way, so I capture them this way. I simply just guide them in posing and styling to how I already see them.”

What is she looking for in her latest project?  When searching for models, it’s more of an energy match for her. “It must resonate between me and my client, when the energy resonates, magic can happen!”

And as a photographer what does she wish people would know?  “That it’s not about me at all, I set my ego aside to hold a space for my clients to shine through! I simply just utilize the skills and tools that I have learned as a photographer to capture the essence that is you.”

For fun we asked her who she  could photograph anyone, who would that be and why?

“I would love to photograph Empress Wu Zetian(624–705), who was the first and only woman emperor of China. With her exceptional intelligence, extraordinary competence in politics, and inordinate ambition, she ruled as the “Holy and Divine Emperor” of the Second Zhou Dynasty (690–705) for fifteen years.

I find her absolutely fascinating! Against all odds in a completely male dominant society, she took charge and led a nation with exceptional poise. At least that’s what historians have documented. I would love to travel back in time if I could, meet her and photograph her!”

To find out more about Tiomi and her latest work at Blair Ann Photography Studio, visit  blairannstudios.com  BTW she does amazing headshots too for business and portfolio needs.