Graduation Day

04-30-17 Montoya7729AMAfter 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.

Ask a Friend

LuLu (1 of 1)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.

 

LanaII (1 of 1)

LanaIII (1 of 1)

geek-1-of-1

Show Me Your Softer Side

Iya-2969I had worked with Iya a number of times through the years. I’d seen many sides of her personality and beauty. Uncovered layers of her personality and character I never knew existed. All while building a level of trust and friendship that made me  feel as comfortable with her as she may have become with me. So when Iya returned for from her trip to Russia I invited her over to catch up and put some of my new ideas to work.

Iya softer side-3082Though I had done my share of Boudoir Photography in the past I had recently found myself engrossed in a book by author/photographer Christa Meola titled  “The Art of Boudoir Photography. Within the nine chapters Meola covers a wide array of subjects including, but not limited to posing, movement, lighting and communication. All with great detail, imagery and easily understandable text.

Iya B-2964As Iya arrived I explained my ideas and vision while expressing my hopes to show a side of Iya my camera had rarely captured. Since meeting and working with Iya I’ve been able to capture many of her strengths, beauty and naturally sexy look. Yet I’ve never been able to capture the soft and often funny side she often reveals in private. I don’t specifically remember her reaction that day but I do remember the relaxed pace and approach to taking those images. Moving from the lights and backgrounds of the living rooms studio. We moved to the bedroom, relying on the soft natural light coming through the widow late in the day.

Iya C-3077During those few hours we shot some beautiful images while capturing some very intimate and unguarded  moments. It was by far the most laid back and natural session we’ve done together. One I’ll look back on as the day I really allowed me access to Iya’s softer side. Thanks Iya.

Happy Returns

Since last weeks session with Denise the two of us have been in constant contact with one another about working together on other projects. Every now and then my phone lights up with an image, shortly followed by  “Look at this.”  “I want to try this the next time we shoot.” MercedesI’ve been really inspired these days to work with different people, try new things and experiment with different concepts and lighting.     As the winter begins to thaw and signs of spring just starting to show.     I feel energized and confident that I’m moving in a good direction. I’m meeting new, creative people who are open minded and love living life to the fullest. Photography, art and being a photographer allow me to communicate, create and relate on levels I would never be able to otherwise. Only the future can tell just where life takes me. For now, I’m extremely grateful to be where I am.

Happy Thanksgiving.

I don’t get to see my family very often. Holidays and Birthdays for the most part. Being that my parents divorced when I was six, I’ve gained an extended family of step and half brothers and sisters. Though we’re all very different I love them with all my heart and look forward to the time we get to spend together. Here’s a few pictures I took with the new Canon 7 D.

Mike and Jackie.
She's a total sweetheart.
My Brother Matt. The most chill person you'll ever meet.
Brother Mike
My Father and Matt.

Roksolana invades New York City.

My shoot with Roksolana (Lana for short) was both fun and heartfelt. As we were sitting in the office talking she told me about her recent move to Brooklyn from the Ukraine. Her love for modeling, art and New York City. There was a certain warmth and ease to her personality. I told her about my current town of Hoboken which she knew very well, being that she has been working with an artist there. I was very engaged. In speaking I couldn’t help but notice a pronounced scar on her chest. When I asked her about it she openly spoke about having been fitted with a pace maker. Something that seemed insane at such a young age. She told about the issues she had from a very young age. I immediately identified considering what I went trough with having a brain tumor at a very young age. It wasn’t as much as sad exchange as it was a triumphant one. Both of had overcome and adversity at a very young age and were living happy, full lives. As for the session that followed. She was so natural and instinctive. Few of the shots were posed. It was just the two of us conversing and exchanging stories. Exchanges like these are a major ingredient to why I love what I do. Here’s to you Roks.

P.S. Lana, if you read this. The reason I didn’t photoshop the scar out of the picture is I thought is was an important part of the story, your beauty and your experience,

The People you Meet

Photography has always been my way to meet the world. To introduce myself and  get ot know people I may not be bold enough to otherwise. To say things I would never be able to say with words. One of the reasons I started this blog in the first place was to tell the stories about the unique people I had been meeting and to tell the stories behind the images. Photography and portraiture has allowed me the opportunity to meet the world.

Thursday I met a woman whose cultural background was as diverse as the places she’s traveled. A recent transplant from the West Coast Suzanne is a mix of Arabian, South East Asian and European. Not to mention that she speaks a number of languages including Cantonese, Mandarin and Russian. I learned so much in the short time we spent together. Being around people with such diverse backgrounds and experiences is so important to me. We talked about our favorite destinations and how I dreamed about my next possible travel spots. Places like Vietnam, Cambodia and Morocco. I may not have been able to go there yet but I’m happy to have met and photographed people who have.