Jene is so right when he says that every photo shoot is a learning experience. You need the right combination and it starts with the photographer. First because you pick the model, you have an idea what you want to achieve and you give direction. Jene thought that I should have been more assertive. I felt that this was a model of his choosing (it was) and she was lovely. But models aren’t all alike and you need to direct them in order to get the most out of them. I started my inner sanctum series with self portraits because of several reasons. I didn’t have a network of models nor did I know how to make my needs known, I wasn’t totally sure where I was going with it and I didn’t want to waste money. As difficult as it is to do self portraits, it was easier to get the most out of the model. I knew the emotions I wanted to capture. Then I did a couple of group photography session where I was the lead photographer for 30 minutes, getting to direct. This was a more affordable way to practice (shared costs).
Last July I hired a male model who was originally a fashion model and through several emails realized that this beautiful french model understood what I was going for.
Next I hired Shawna who was a actress – she worked with me and came across with the emotions I was looking for.
For some reason, when I told this lovely young model that I wanted tension, angst, emotion I got very little. Jene said I should have yelled at her to get her stirred up. Well yelling at someone doesn’t always work but maybe next time I’ll try that. I look to bring a sensuality out along with emotion because they both well up from within and for me become stronger images. Maybe she is too young and can’t bring the feelings out because she has not experienced them fully. The old saying you don’t ask a boy to do a man’s job comes to mind.
She is a fine art model and it shows (like Jene said – in the softness of her hands and the lack of tension anywhere. But she is beautiful to look at and I can truly appreciate her fine art quality.
Don’t get me wrong, beautiful figure studies, playing with light laying softly across the landscape of a body is an art form and I don’t mind having beautifully lit nudes in my portfolio. As an artist and a human with a form of my own, I appreciate the beauty frozen in time to get lost in. The highlights and shadows that draw your eye in and over the image. I may look at it from a different perspective than some. BUT it isn’t getting me any closer to completing my series “Inner Sanctum” (Will it ever be complete – no, new images are always added as they come along, but what I would like is for something complete enough for a solo exhibit if I am ever discovered as an emerging artist) I could pull together 30 images BUT they don’t all have the “wow” factor that’s what I’m looking for).
Sometimes you just ‘gets what you gets’ (as Popeye would say with his cheh, heh, heh chuckle). In the beginning I asked if she had looked at my website to see the type of images I was trying to create. She said she had, but I’m sure she looked at many photographer’s sites. There are a number of images that I do like and maybe over time when I’m not being so harsh on myself I will look at them differently and find some compelling images that I think are fantastic. Sometimes the sheer magnitude of weeding through the editing process is overwhelming because one looks for images to discard. (for me a negative mindset is needed to be critical of my own work) I do get a lot of technically good images -when you have a youthful model with a good complexion and toned body, who can pose and well positioned lighting you almost can’t help getting decent shots. But that’s not what I’m all about.
Each artist reveals a part of themselves in their images, I am developing my style and want what is shown to reflect me as much as possible. My feelings, the way I see things. This photo session wasn’t a waste of time or money because I did learn from it and did get some images that I think will fit my needs. Maybe I should gather up all the beautiful fine art nudes and make a body of work in that catagory. I certainly have plenty of those and Keira’s images did add to that. It’s not that I’m complaining, she is a wonderful fine art model, a sweet lovely young woman. Oh well! Another place and time perhaps.