I like to put my personal twist on boudoir photography, unlike any others in the Nashville area. You could call it boudoir fusion, Foudoir / Farrell Boudoir ( See what I did there? ), or maybe just Farrell Gallery friendly. LOL. Amber and I ventured to this abandoned house that had actually caught fire in the upper level some time ago. We wanted to do some mix of implied nude and boudoir, given a more alternative boudoir and nude style. There are no fancy pillows here, but the unique and weathered, distressed setting really provide a compliment to her alternative style. She has beauty but isn’t a flowers and kittens type of gal. Now, it was my job to provide some sexy but elegant photos to compliment her style. These are the non nude ones, which are great because it leaves something to the imagination but it shows confidence, they’re sexy, and have mystique.
What better than to use the textures of the doorways and windows for some photos more on the nude level? But yet still somewhat concealed. It was a fun and adventurous shoot that we both enjoyed and boosted Amber’s confidence with a good photoshoot experience, which is win win!
I couldn’t believe how lush and green the fields were that day at that farm in Kentucky, so I thought we’d show them how city folks define working the fields 🙂 I believe these were alfalfa fields, was perfect height to provide some interesting cover for the model, as well as some interesting foreground to compliment the model’s curves as the sunlight kissed her body. I used some different techniques for these harsh late afternoon lighting conditions. It was interesting to use this perspective and horizon lines along with the flow of her body, hair, and expression. And hope we didn’t run into snakes, lol. The gnats were out in full force. Oh the things we are willing to endure working in disheveled locations 😀
For most of these I used the Elinchrom Quadra with a beauty dish and a variable neutral density filter, so the subject would be lit and have backlighting from the sun, and the background would be darker. Creating that point of contrast. A good way to heighten the mood and drama of nude photography.
This was all natural light, and a neutral density filter at 3 stops, to create some silhouetting and the backlighting would provide a high contrast brush light on her shoulder, back and butt. Strategic placement and angle of the model so the sun follows her curves.
I loved the graceful stretch of the model’s body accompanied by the negative space and vanishing perspective of the fence posts on the left.
Almost like a morning stroll in the country being one with nature, free spirit.
Welcome to the Dilapidated barn nude series 1, compliments of model Grace Stone and Franklin KY. I always feel a sense of tranquility there, away from traffic and city noise and parking hassles, etc. Makes for an un-distracted creative experience especially doing artistic nude photography outdoors, or partially outdoors. The sun was peaking in and out, and there were holes in the roof of this barn, and the sun hit the rafters and created an interesting shadow and light pattern, so I went all natural light inside the barn. Light, shadows, and the curves of the female body, all working together in harmony.
I love using different angles and leaning of the body and carefully composing the image to make all elements of the photo tie together. The textures and colors of the location really add depth and contrast to the soft beauty and innocence of her body. The flow of her hair and her soft skin, position of arms and fingers help with added caress in the photos.
This next idea was a very impromptu one, wasn’t sure which way I preferred it so here are 2 different post production renditions of the same image, would love your thoughts on that.
There were rolls of barbed wire fencing behind the barn, another wonderful contrast to go beside her body. I think it goes together like chocolate and peanut butter! I hope you’ve enjoyed, it was nice for both the model and me to feel free and inhibited and just get into creative mode.
I think most of us know it isn’t by default, but it certainly is a beloved art form for many of us. Whether artists / painters, female form and artistic nude photographers, glamour photographers, etc. or enthusiasts, we all have our own vision of what is art. Nudity is art if captured thoughtfully, at least in my opinion. I’ve seen, admired, loathed, and critiqued many nudes from other photographers. You can have a very imperfect subject captured well, as far as lighting, angle, mood, composition, etc. and you can also have a beautifully sculpted model captured poorly and generically. Art is subjective. Good and bad can be too. But being a photographer of the female form for over 10 years, I take it seriously and I know my vision before starting the next shoot.
It’s taken years of developing my craft and getting critiques, (which by the way should never end in one’s career) before being cognizant of all aspects of the photo. Whether high key or low key lighting, shadow placement, hand, arm, leg, and neck placement, arrangement of fingers, overall mood, it all works together. When you have one without the other, it seldom is a complete work (in my opinion of course). I saw one photo from another photographer with a beautiful nude subject, but her being nude was the only strong point of the photograph. Nothing interesting about the lighting, deer in the headlights expression and stiff pose. So close but so far away. When considering whether it’s successful art or not, always ask does this look like someone who appreciates the female form as an art form, or a guy who saw boobs for the first time, or is only in it for the boobs, etc. The photos always tell it. My 2 cents, worth what you paid.
Bodyscapes are close ups of a specific region of the body, as some have been seen in my previous Roadside Motel series. Depending on the body and proportions of each unique subject, angles have to be thought out. Bodyscapes aren’t usually done perfectly straight on, because that can make a body look stodgy and in some cases truncated. There are body mechanics that come into play, that any reputable nude or boudoir photographer should know! Just like when you do a headshot , pick the better side and go slightly to that angle. If the subject is heavier, shoot from a slightly higher elevation to make the face longer and make the chin area less problematic.
As the body curves, the way the lines of the body follow each other and how the photograph is composed, as well as how the lighting adds to the mystique and drama of the bodyscape, all of that adds to the success of the photo. Mystique and abstract nature of the photo are two reasons why bodyscapes thrown into the mix are a great compliment.
I chose this angle and lighting combination because the brush light from the window provided some contrast and still kept the low key lighting and shadow drama I wanted, for higher contrast and added mystique. The light followed the muscles of her upper back and the arch of her back and butt captured the fullness of her butt. This exact angle wouldn’t work with every subject but you get the idea.
With this one, I still wasn’t directly behind her but still more direct and less angled than the first one. If she had a bigger butt, this angle wouldn’t work as well, but the added directness did help make her butt more full, but not stodgy. The way the leg folded over and the torsion of her vertebrae compliments the curves of her butt. Just my thought process, but bodyscapes are cool and a good addition to any intimate photo session in my opinion.
We went back and forth about that bedspread from the 1990’s, do we leave it or not….we both agreed there would be a certain charm with it to compliment the also dated room. But also wanted to change the mood of the photos a little and a simple neutral bedspread works better for this. There is a nice mix here of contortionist poses that signify a classic artistic nude work of art, and a bit more alluring but natural candid feel of photos.
Of course with private clients who haven’t done this before, I would keep it basic but yet creative and elegant. Below is a perfect example. Candid, confident, sexy, upbeat, and easy to position the subject. I love natural looking elegant nudes where the subject feels at ease, when they don’t it shows in the photos.
Now we shift to a vertical base, all relatively easy looks to pull off for any client, done uniquely with each unique subject of course. These are all as primal as photography can get. A model, a camera and lens, and a window.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this roadside motel series, be on the lookout for more 🙂 To book your personal session, trust Nashville’s fine art nude and boudoir photographer for a fun and flattering photoshoot!
Welcome back to the Bates Motel sister location 🙂 Before we even began shooting, we looked around the room, and took it all in. Similar how I do abandoned buildings. The dated bedspread, the tv straight from 1993, and a very old coat or garment rack half heartedly screwed into the wood paneling walls. We were thinking, PERFECT! We’re going to use this! For a location intimate photographer, it’s important to notice every detail of your surroundings, no matter how slight the detail, and use what grabs your attention. Not every eye would see this room the same. This is another exercise of making a beautiful photograph with capturing the female form in it’s elegant simplicity, even in a motel room most people wouldn’t want to stay in.
I told you we’d find a use for that wall rack 😀 Shape and the artistic nude female form, light and shadows, it all comes together.
Another very random feature if this room was a fairly long nook in the back of the room, very linear, maybe 8 feet deep and 4-5 feet wide. There was nothing in there except a table and no chairs. So, we made a use for it. I’m sure those walls could tell a lot of stories, but probably none like this. Such a linear space, to keep some mood in the lighting, was a challenge. For this shoot I used a continuous ring light that mounts on my stand and has a flexible mounting neck, so I placed it directly above her. The rest of the shoot was done with the ring light strategically placed for some lighting contrast along with the little bit of available ambient through the window. But this worked to keep it moody and soft lighting, yet not be flat like on camera flash.
I hope you’ve enjoyed part 2 of the roadside motel series.
Recently a traveling art nude model who I hadn’t seen or worked with in 10 years, yes 10 years, passed through Nashville for an impromptu shoot. Back then, I was doing some mixed media photoshoots with an abstract artist friend, who body painted her. Then with the photos, I would print, he’d divide them and mount to canvas and paint around them and clear over them. I still remember how fluid and graceful she was in her motions and she only got better with time! After several recent private nude photoshoots for clients that we are keeping anonymous, it was time to work with Melissa again to update our respective portfolios.
Anyone who follows my work knows I shoot and style for the occasion, and often like abandoned houses and other buildings for the textures and overall contrast of beauty and distress. Too damn cold for that now, LOL. If it were a private client and she wanted an elegant boudoir shoot, I’d probably go with a boutique elegant hotel. But I picked a local roadside motel, most would call seedy. It is. But I wanted some distress and the feel of the dark lonely motel room where guests could be passing through workers or down on their luck. BUT we can bring beauty to the shoot with this location just as if it were an elegant branded hotel. That is a fun and unique challenge. Anyone can make a beautiful location photograph beautifully. In this case the subject stood out enough to not draw the eye to the studio. I just went with a more low key lighting than I would have elsewhere. But I love this almost film noir style. Welcome to the roadside motel series part 1. Where the beauty of the female form meets a 1970’s -80’s motel room 🙂
The subject comes up many times about photographers touching subjects and models during photoshoots, not just nude, intimate, or boudoir photoshoots. It’s been discussed in various social media groups and modeling related websites and there will be a variety of viewpoints. I am here to share mine, it’s really quite simple. When I am photographing a model, or a private client for any kind of intimate work, I am asking them for their trust based on my work, reputation, and personality. Many don’t have much time to know me well prior to working with me, only feeling me out in the initial vetting process. I refuse to take part in the silly stigmas that male photographers have to automatically be up to something, always bring bodyguards, all that fear mongering horse shit. But in return, I make sure that my reputation stays above board.
Every subject that comes to me for any nude or other intimate photos comes to me for my ability to capture the female form in it’s simple but elegant beauty. I want it to be a fun, and discreet experience for them. A photographer touching a scantily dressed or nude subject can make even an experienced model uncomfortable. Usually I ask the subject to move her shoulder back, space her fingers apart, loosen her grip, etc. Just simple yet important details to a photograph and it’s mood….and that usually suffices. If I need them to do something complex or if they are having difficulty understanding what I need them to do, I simply ask if I can adjust them. I’ve never been told no. I’ve never asked unless necessary, and it’s fairly rare. And even then, it’s adjusting an arm or shoulder. So in short…touching a subject isn’t usually necessary. But if it is necessary, only do so after asking. It removes any element of surprise and only buys the photographer credibility. Part of the accountability process.
Or other nude / intimate photoshoot. A little free advice on this subject, by your friendly Nashville female form artist. Selecting the right photographer for this very personal project is very important. That you feel passionate about their style of capture of the body, lighting, mood, anything else that is distinctive about their style. Also, their level of respect and discretion towards their clients.
When making these selections, you should be able to give examples to that photographer about what inspires you about their work, whether it’s about a specific angle, lighting style, mood of a specific photo or series. That way they know what motivates you the most and be able to use that to help personalize your intimate photoshoot effectively.
In other words, if you want a specific result or style, that you have seen from other photographers, and see none of that in the photographer’s work you are looking at, it’s a clear sign that you need to go to the photographers who created the work you are most passionate about. Usually, clients who come to me are looking or my style specifically instead of the standard boudoir photographer / pillow arrangers. But it’s happened, where prospective clients show me a slew of ideas they send me on Pinterest or from other local photographers, and most of which, are NOT even my style. In that case, it’s clear that if that’s what they are looking for, we’re a mismatch.
Logic should prevail here, but it’s not about our fragile artist egos, it’s about hiring the right person for the right job. Use that person for their strengths that you are most passionate about. If that person doesn’t have it, and you have other preferences, find a way to hire those people. Going to a photographer and asking them to recreate the work of another is limiting, unfair, and often not do-able. Not to mention rude, though most don’t mean it to be. If a client is talking to me about completing her project, I’d want to know what it is about MY style thy like and want to incorporate into my shoot. It’s a specific choice.