I got together with Sarah Jane, a muse and friend of mine, to do her senior portraits, and we decided to also do a styled, but dark artistic photoshoot. As we have before, and will do again, LOL. She is a talented theatrical and special effects makeup artist, so we combine that with my knowledge of long exposure photography to do a successful conceptual photoshoot. These were done at a cemetery in Bowling Green, just before sundown. We literally had maybe 30 minutes for her to throw makeup on, get her contacts in, tatter her dress, etc. and for me to get the tripod and camera ready, etc. Gates would be locked at sundown, but we made it 🙂
These were all captured with my Fuji XT-1 and zeiss 32 1.8 . This one was a 2 second shutter speed.
I had her make a couple abrupt motions and stay still in each transition, 4 second shutter speed.
This may look like extensive post production, not really. My Photoshop skills are more skin and people repair and color / black and white work, far more so than background manipulation. I did no work to change the “ghosting of the subject” I simply played with highlights and shadows a little, played with colors, film grain in some, and used either or both a PSD texture background with scratches and another with a textured building with cracks in it. In which case, I add a layer and adjust opacity and add as a background layer. Just mainly to dirty it up and add a little background texture but not change the overall photo or subject matter. The Zombie apocalypse in Kentucky has come. 🙂
I only offer a very limited amount TF, trade or collaborative photoshoots. When I do, I am careful to make sure that model has the right look for the project, our styles of work would benefit one another, and our terms match up. If we’re both investing our time and talents it may as well be worth our efforts, right? One topic I’ve seen come up multiple times in various online model and photographer community discussions, travel expense for collaborations. I saw one topic where the model asked if she could ask for gas money to travel to a photographer 50 miles away for a trade shoot. Of course she got a myriad of answers.
Of course a lot of it depends on who approaches who about the shoot, etc. but if both parties don’t equally value the shoot, why do it? There have been times I’ve traveled to shoot with a specific model and I never asked them for gas money. If it were a true collaborative shoot. Other times they’ve traveled to me. If a private client, I add any applicable travel expense to the job. My answer to this model was, is it worth a 50 mile trip to have this photographer’s work in your portfolio or not? If not, why do the shoot?
If it were me, I’d think it’s a bit petty. Even if I don’t vocalize this exactly as I’m writing it….My thought would be, I am collaborating with you when clients pay a minimum of $300.00 for me to shoot for them. And I’m not asking you to help me pay to heat and cool my studio, wear and tear on camera gear, time spent retouching photos after you’re long gone, etc. We all live in the same economy, but if you can’t suck it up and cover 15 or 20 dollars worth of fuel for our shoot, clearly you don’t value having my work in your portfolio. It keeps things on an even playing field if no money is exchanged, we all have our investments in our crafts. If one paid the other for travel, it’s not a true collaboration or TF shoot. If it’s a condition to do the shoot, it’s up to both parties to decide.
I met a new aspiring model recently who was in need of some portfolio development, and was interested in exploring boudoir and implied nude photography. But she has had a couple disappointing experiences and needed to discuss first, which was smart. I explained to her that as she finds herself as a model, she will be conscious of angles and know her own body better, and will know more about vetting photographers and freelance assignments. She knows that part of her search criteria for a photographer involved in intimate art and female form has to understand body angles as well as building trust with the subject. Especially before a subject or model has lots of experience being photographed in any stage of undress, they are vulnerable and it’s the photographer’s responsibility to provide a good experience. That doesn’t mean be a white knight, etc. But just to respect the fact that they are trusting us to be discreet, not cross lines, and to capture them in a flattering light.
We used the Hotel Preston near the Nashville International Airport. Hair and makeup artistry by Jordan Breetz Nashville.
The hotel offered a nice furnished boutique setting especially since it was a little chilly outside to use abandoned locations….and this particular setting fit her look better. I offer hair and makeup and option to use boutique hotel for my clients’ boudoir shoots. The goal was to capture mood, beauty, softness, and sensuality, yet retain elegance. Female form in it’s glory.
I hope you’ve enjoyed the boudoir and implied nude photos of Kaila, it was rewarding to me that she was pleased with the photos and experience she had, win 🙂
This is a different part of the safety discussion than the whole tired escort debate, bringing butthurt boyfriends and chatty friends to save models from the big ogre evil pants photographers, le sigh, LOL. But more rather physical safety for both the model and photographer at the location. Basic location photoshoot safety. My particular choice of locations makes this a pertinent discussion in that extreme I suppose. It’s my job as a project coordinator and photographer to prepare my subjects for potential hazards. That by the way a location like this isn’t my pick for every client or model, it doesn’t fit everyone’s look or the end result styling they’re going for.
I’m no white knight who has to over protect the damsels in distress….they’re not children and I don’t treat them like it or mollycoddle them. But I’ve seen photographers ask models to get in cold or nasty water with no thought of them getting sick or hurt, etc. Total other extreme…That’s tool-ish. But some care should be given. When I use these abandoned and distressed locations, sure it’s fun and creates a dramatic mood to the photos, as well as a nice contrast with the beauty of the female form and subject matter. But there are dangers. Debris, broken glass, nails, needles, etc. strewn about the floor….nails sticking out of the walls, etc. exposed hazardous materials etc. Poking, cutting, or falling hazards exist. I always let them know that possibility and look over the shooting area we are using before bringing them in. But they know the risks. And we together determine they’re worth the reward. I encourage them to be very careful about where they go barefoot or not do it at all. Just a little chivalry and not to the point of knighthood. 😀