After Sunday’s nude session I was both eager and anxious about sharing the results with my friend and mentor down the hall. He’s been a great teacher who has made it a habit to share his positive thoughts before sprinkling in any much appreciated criticism. I say “appreciated” because if it were not for those much feared critiques. I would have never grown or learned to improve on the things that have been holding me back. Imagine the combination of relief and glee I felt when he remarked how good the pictures from that session were and why. Going as far as saying that this was the best work I’ve done to date. Declaring that, as I move forward. This should be my portfolio. That school was out and I had graduated. The End.
It’s not often when I ask a friend to model for me. Let alone, strip down to her bare essentials to help me tests ideas, such as boudoir set ups I’d like to do in the future. So when it came to asking one particular girl to help me out. At the very least, I was fully expecting a flat out rejection. When she surprisingly agreed. I did everything I could to make her and myself feel as comfortable and pressure free as possible. My goal for this particular session was to project a sense of warmth and intimacy. A mix of subtle lighting, varied backgrounds and a great rapport with my model friend. I think we did a great job. And while my setup will need some adjusting. I’m grateful for getting the opportunity to work with someone I enjoy spending time with.
During the week or so before our session. Melissa and I spent hours exchanging ideas about our upcoming session and what we were both looking to achieve during the short window of time we’d be collaborating. During that time, she shared a number of images taken by other photographers. None of which, in my very humble opinion did her any justice. Basic things such as lighting and keeping her beautiful eyes under dark shadows. So during the final days before our session, I assured her that while I was just getting back in to studio work. She would leave that day with photos that would put her in a better light.
From the moment we met. I couldn’t help but think”This isn’t the woman I’ve been talking to for the last week or so.” Her presence and personality were glowing. Her beautiful eyes and smile, yet to be highlighted by the cameras lens. There was a look and a spirit I wanted to portray. My goal for the shoot was suddenly revealed. Due to my usual nervous, anxious nature. I tend to talk a lot. In this particular case. I was so intrigued by her story. I just shut my mouth and listened. I was surprised by how many common interests we shared. The chemistry we shared during the shoot eased all of the usual nervous knots and anxiousness I get when beginning a session.Having been raised by a Mother who always appreciated and shared various art forms with me. I grew to love and appreciate women with curves. Maybe it was the Latin influence in our home. I don’t know. I’ve always been one to go with the “Good things come in all shapes and sizes.” Beauty isn’t a one size fits all affair.
As of late I’ve been getting a lot of requests for boudoir, nudes and work that leads towards the sexier side of portraiture. One of the key elements I’ve worked on is lighting. I’ve played around with window light and on board flash with varied results. However, bringing my Studio lights into the bedroom has given me the best results. I love shooting nudes and such but I want to keep it as artistic as possible. Anyone can photograph a naked woman. Doing it artistically and tastefully is another thing all-together. Chemistry and the trust of and with the model are essential. Lighting is extremely important. I love that people feel comfortable enough with me to be natural and not hyper aware of the fact that there’s someone with a camera in the room. I see a lot of raunchy and sex driven photography on sites like Model Mayhem, which is fine and well. Just not where I want to be. For me I want to keep it more artistic. It can be sexy but it doesn’t have to get raunchy. I’m all about the sexy.