An old one from the vault...
Sunday, January 25, 2015
Monday, December 29, 2014
Mer is one of my closest friends, and she is probably my favorite person to shoot with. We've done every type of shoot together- pinup, fashion, portrait, abstract bodyscapes, as well as many erotic shoots. Shoots with her are always very laid back and usually without any agenda- pick up the camera and shoot. I always get something good, but if I didn't I don't think that she would mind, which is why I never feel any pressure. Not that I usually feel much anxiety over shooting anymore. I used to get anxiety about any upcoming shoot, but nowadays I only get anxiety about something that has to be done exactly right with a very demanding client. Still, shooting with someone new, I always feel a need to really impress them (not necessarily a bad thing...). The fact that they perhaps have never done a shoot before only adds that much more pressure. I'll call this set the "Meira Eyes Closed Series".
Sunday, December 28, 2014
These images might seem a little out of place with anything else in this blog. They were intentionally part of a shoot with Sonia, and I've been dedicating a portion of many of my shoots to shooting these images. They're for my bodyscape series, which I have not shown anywhere on the web but here, although some were incorporated in my body painting show at Mew Gallery a couple of years ago. btw, I hate the term body painting, but I can't seem to come up with anything better. The lighting, texture and mood are the same as everything else here, so I suppose that they do sort of belong with this body of work.
Wednesday, December 24, 2014
Ajaye has my favorite kind of eyes to photograph. In a portrait they are soulful and expressive. In erotic images they are bedroom eyes- sleepy, yet they draw you in. From the very beginning eyes have been the main focal point in my photographs of people, and that has never changed. I can always help someone's eyes connect to the camera better with a few tricks, but there is only so much that I can do. In the end, either someone's eyes connect to the camera or they don't. That is why it is only every so often that I create a portrait where the eyes simply get a intense visceral reaction from most viewers. It's a constant frustration, but when I get it, it's such a joy. I don't care for cliches (does anybody?), but "the eyes are a window into the soul" none the less applies to many of my images. The eyes are the best non-verbal indicator of our emotional and intellectual state of mind. I don't even know if I believe in humans having actual souls (I've met a few that definitely do not), but that doesn't matter. Photographs are an illusion, and if the illusion of seeing into the soul is there, then that illusion is what matters to me.
Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Tuesday, November 25, 2014
I've been feeling a deep affinity with Egon Schiele lately, an early twentieth century Viennese artist. His world was not the glittering & decadent world usually depicted by his contemporaries- but rather instead a grubby, base & seedy world. Schiele's erotic art is not as sensuous as that produced by his mentor, Gustav Klimt, nor is it as erotic. As with all Schiele's work, his erotic figures are twisted and distorted. His pictures convey the idea of sexual experimentation, often tinged with disappointment or regret. His work is not easily defined by any single artistic movement. He was a unique talent who created a truly unusual style, decades ahead of its time.
Thursday, November 20, 2014
We live in sucession, in division, in part, in particles. Meantime within man is the soul of the whole; the wise silence; the universal beauty; to which every part and particle is equally related; the eternal ONE. And this deep power in which we exist, and whose whole beatitude is all accessible to us, is not only self-sufficing and perfect in every hour, but the act of seeing and the thing seen, the seer and the spectacle, the subject and the object, are one.
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
Wednesday, November 5, 2014
Friday, October 31, 2014
Sunday, October 19, 2014
I've always tried to maintain a strong lock onto the eyes. Normally, there is a natural rhythm of looking at people and looking away. When it feels right, we can hold our gaze a little longer, relishing a simple moment of human connection. We are naturally drawn into images by eye contact. There is nothing like that feeling of a tie bound by an invisible thread, as in sharing a unique moment with them. It’s very hard to articulate and explain in words that feeling that connects you to a subject, either in the viewfinder or on the printed page. When that connection is there, its obvious – and doesn’t need words to explain it, we feel it.
Monday, October 13, 2014
One of my all time favorite photo books (and biggest guilty pleasure) is Revenge by Ellen Von Unwerth. It's a little (6 x 8 inches) limited edition book, bound in black linen. I don't like to judge books by their cover- but just looking at this cover, you know that it's going to be a treat inside. While there is a general narrative arc (taken as "excerpts" from the diaries of the nubile young heroines), Von Unwerth primarily uses stylized black and white photography (think Helmut Newton meets Man Ray) to tell the story of how the Baroness "disciplines" her newly orphaned nieces. It is not a very original story, but Revenge is really not about the story. What little narrative there is, is executed with a tongue-in-cheek panache that sets the winkingly saucy tone of the book. And the eroticism in Revenge really does have panache. The models are gorgeous, the clothes (when there are clothes) are gorgeous, the set (a glorious mansion and its extensive grounds) is gorgeous - all in the style of the lovely pornography of early 20th century France and Italy. The sado-masochistic elements tend less towards real pain and suffering and more towards the discomforts of dominance and submission in a campy, Paris Vogue sort of way. You can't help but laugh, but you also can't put it down - it's just too damn pretty. Though I find the pleasure of reading Revenge to be more aesthetic than erotic, I certainly can't deny that it's definitely pleasure all the same. Revenge is a sexy little volume, all the more so because it doesn't take it so too terribly seriously. If a book could wink, this one would.
Friday, October 10, 2014
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
This is from a series that remind me of old-timey boardwalk photographs- except that they more resemble actual vintage images, rather than being campy or hokey. I find it interesting there is such a fine line between being genuine versus stereotypical, and I like trying to walk that tight rope...