Male Vs Female Models

I’m sometimes asked which I prefer–male models or female models. No preference. No difference in how I work with them. However, it’s almost impossible not to notice that my photographs feature female models much more often than male models. I’ve even been accused of using too many young women in my work. I actually use many models who are in their 30s and 40s. Susie shown here is in her late 50s. Here’s the problem: culturally we seem to be more comfortable with female nudity than male nudity. Full frontal in both cases is cause for many people to suddenly turn on their prude, but male full frontal is ten times more shocking somehow.

That said, I think these examples are equally interesting and serene. Both were shot same day, same pond.




Our Lady of the Forest

Catching a reflection on the surface of a pond is fun. Capturing both the reflection and the complexity of the pond habitat is better. In fact seeing the depth and living dimensions of the pond in the reflection gives this photograph a mythic quality, I think. Seems like a goddess has paused for a moment amidst the forest world where she lives and rules. Again you have to look carefully to see that reflections can also be windows to what’s beneath the reflection itself.

I like this photo a lot because it does that.

Photo Accepted in Poughkeepsie New York Show

It’s been a good year so far–lots of my photos going to shows. Wish I was going with them!!!

This is a photo that I’ve had success with before. It’s been in a couple of previous shows. It was taken in a swimming pool and gets it drama–it’s appearance of walking on water–from the fact that I flipped it. It was actually shot with her laying in the water on her side. See image below. Hope you agree that it’s less dramatic that way. How a photo is presented can make a difference.

I like color photos, in general, but lately I’ve taken some photos that are best in black and white. This one, for example.



Making Rain–Wet Studio Adventure

Discovered that Denver has a wet studio. Just like a regular photo studio except that it can handle water. Water from the top like rain. Water from the bottom in a pool. Splash and flash and you get all kinds of fun photos. For someone, like me, who loves adding water to my photographs, it was like discovering candy or ice cream or ice cream sprinkled with candy. You get the idea. Here’s one of the resulting photos. If you want to have the same fun, Google The Old Studio in Denver and talk to Lewis Preston. Tell him I sent you.

In the first photo the model is lying in a puddle while it rains down on her. Warm water, BTW. Model claimed she was having fun.

Here’s a different image from the same shoot. In this case, no rain but milk was added to the pool to give it an opaque look–milky and wonderful.


Silhouette Times Six

I’m no fan of silhouette photos. Most of the time, I think the same image, not in silhouette, would be more interesting so why go the gimmick route? This is an exception because the plastic dress forms, on either side, create a second repeat of pattern and then for a bonus, the dress forms reflect the silhouettes (look closely). Result is six images with two models. Now, that adds up to an image that is more than just setting up some backlit lighting.

The other criteria is that the silhouette shapes need to be eye-arresting. I think these are because of the angled arms and slight hand movement. I like that one model is facing the camera, the other is turned sideways. Even the hair hanging down adds something.

This one is best big enough to show all the silhouettes, even the reflected ones, 11×14 or even larger. It does well matted black or white. It would be fun in a dressing room or walk-in closet. It is modest enough for a public space. Printed in series of 25 prints.

Snow Shapes

OK, it’s been snowing a lot in Colorado. Snow is a huge challenge–keeping it white but not blank. Then there are those pots with their rounded shapes, not unlike the problem of capturing the human form. Besides it’s fun to figure out how to make a good photograph out of simple things.

I like the colors against the snow as well as the shapes. I think the drips inside the pots add interest. This is a found photo. I did not arrange the pots–duh, the snow would have been messed up if I had–but that might be worth noting. I like the simplicity.

Digital capture; digital print. This one does have more than the usual photoshopping. I was working to get the snow right and although it doesn’t show here, there are drifts at the top with well defined snow ridges that show on the print and that I worked very hard to bring out in the photo.

“Snow Pots” ┬áprints big or small, but seems to be better big–16×24. New one, there are 25 prints left in the series of 25.

Fine Art Nude #2

Although this is a color digital shot, I thought it printed best as a classic black and white photograph.

What makes this a good photo? I think it’s the connection between the two models and the fact that they are both focused on something off to the left of the frame which creates both compositional interest and a sense of spontaneity.

What else do I like? The sense of motion, as if they might be moving rather than posed. In fact, the direction was for the models to both move continuously as if in slow motion, in-and-out, back-and-forth. I often give that kind of direction because it avoids the static, posed composition. That also means I have to work to catch the right moment rather than setting something up. As any photographer will tell you, every additional person adds additional complications. It’s twice as hard to get a good photo with two models as with one.

Digital camera; studio set-up, two-lights.

This one is called Hanna and Friend. It can be printed large but my preference is smaller 10 x 12 with a wide white matt and silver frame. It is in a series of 25. This is new work, and the series is just released–25 of the 25 are still available.

I think this one would work well hung in a smaller space like a hallway.

Fine Art Nude #1

This is the icon image at Homo Sapiens Unadorned.

Title: Maskatude

What makes it a worthwhile image? The unexpected, comic attitude.

I especially like the way the photo makes the viewer look twice–those vacant eyes between backwards ears. The hand is also nice, including the shadow of the upper hand. I also like the movement. That butt wants to swing, a nice contrast to the straight, expressionless mask.

The photo was shot in a studio with two lights. Camera is Nikon D90–digital. It was handheld. Except for suggesting she put the mask on backwards, there was very little direction. Model was dancing to music. My job was to catch the right moment.

The print required very little work in Photoshop and has been shown as large as 18 inches by 29 inches (matted size 28 inches by 40 inches) There are 2o remaining in an edition of 25.

It has shown at Camera Obscura in Denver.

Decorating tip: a room where music is played.