Thursday, September 30, 2010


Kellie is a friend of Jade Vixen, and Jade brought her by when they were traveling together. The main reason for shooting was to do a dual suspension along with Katelyn. Kellie has a lot of tattoos, and while  that may not seem out of place among other images posted in this blog, it is something relatively new to my body of work in general. The reason that tattoos are conspicuously absent from much of my work is certainly not because I don't like them- I do, actually. The reason is that most of my influences come from classic masters, and I've always wanted my images to have a timeless feel- so I've always either avoided using models with tattoos, or made sure not to show them. I've always had the same policy with contemporary clothing, hair & makeup- I've seen some otherwise great images from the 80's & 90's that look painfully dated simply because of the clothes, hair or makeup. Lately it seems that all of the most interesting models, or models that are the most uninhibited, have many tattoos. Not to mention body modifications, body piercing's, scars, et cetera. So I've kind of given up excluding these things from my work, and I've actually embraced them. I still tend to stick with vintage looking hair, makeup and lingerie, though. I honestly don't think that there have been any great new strides made in those departments in the last 30 years. I'm very happy with the recent work I have been doing, but only time will tell which will hold up better- my newer work (which is also digital), or my older work in film...

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Percolate is Jade Vixen's sister. Percolate and Jade couldn't be more different than each other in real life- ironically they often look remarkably similar in my images of them. That probably has more to do with the fact that I like to create personas in my images- many of the people that I photograph are often portrayed as more of a reflection of myself than themselves. Most people that I photograph are typically a little taken aback when they see my images of them (in a good way)- even though they were there for the shoot! They simply are not used to looking at themselves in the way that I portray them. My images are an illusion rather than a mirror. I've photographed Percolate many times, and I typically have created glamorous pictures involving elaborate makeup with her- because she's actually very laid back and doesn't wear makeup. These images are a little closer to her actual personality, but they are still definitely a persona...

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Dessa & Jon

Dessa is someone that I've photographed several times before, and Jon is a friend of hers. This shoot was actually a lighting test/ dry run for a much more elaborate shoot for a sexual lubricant advertisement. It featured two different models and another photographer the next day (as well as two more assistants, a makeup person and creative director). The advertisement shoot was similar, but more posed & romantic, rather than spontaneous or intense like most of the images posted here.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Shower series

I started the Shower series about three years ago, when someone who hired me asked if I could photograph her in the shower. I've since done some intense and/or explicit images, as well as some beautiful and/or romantic ones (which seems to describe the two alternating variations of my work lately), but that particular shoot was actually one of the most intense shoots I've ever done. Most of the shower shoots were shot in the 2nd floor shower, which I built from scratch about six years ago. In the past year I've been shooting in the 4th floor shower, which at first I didn't like, but it has been growing on me. Both do have the benefit of being open at the top and rising up twelve feet, so that I can shoot from up above, as well as light from above. Eventually, I'm sure that I'll move on to some fancy tub or other shower, but I'm still satisfied shooting in the new shower for the moment.

Below are some favorite out takes that I have not posted before.

Thursday, September 23, 2010


Over the past couple of years, I have been doing suspensions in my studio in collaboration with Ian. He is very experienced with rope bondage and suspension. In the BDSM world, "full suspension" refers to suspending a person's entire body off the floor with the aid of ropes, chains, or cables. A typical full suspension is an advanced and somewhat risky form of rope bondage. It involves the use of elaborate knots, and many practitioners use modular rope segments that can be quickly released in case the subject experiences a loss of circulation, unwanted pain, or loses consciousness, etc. This is one of the reasons that Ian does the suspensions. Besides that I'm not really experienced enough to do suspensions, it wouldn't be wise for me to be oblivious to someone's safety while I'm photographing them. Most of the rope work that is photographed on the floor, however, are things that I have done myself.

One of the reasons that I began an interest in doing a series on suspensions is that, both in books and surfing the net, it is very hard to find many well-made photographs of suspensions. It's not difficult to find well-done rope work, but the combination of great rope work and images seems to be greatly lacking. So it seemed to be something really worth taking on. After this portfolio builds and expands (I'd like to move the setting outside in trees, for example), I'd like to perhaps get a book published on it.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


For those who don't already know, Kinbaku is traditional Japanese bondage which translates literally as "the beauty of tight binding". It is also often called Shibari, which translates as "to bind". A nice bonus of practicing Kinbaku are the marks that are left behind afterward. While the rope itself is very obvious, I think that the marks left behind tell an interesting story of what already happened.

I don't have much to say about Amaya since Ian the suspension guy brought her by- and I only worked with her for about an hour on this shoot. I don't recall much conversation. I haven't seen her since- I can't say that I really know her at all...

Monday, September 20, 2010


Dessa is a former cutter-  someone who practiced intentional self harm and the direct injuring of body tissue without suicidal intent. I've photographed women who were cutters before, but never with the specific reason of wanting to document it. When I initially met with Dessa, we were both a bit apprehensive- she because her scars were always re-touched out, and I because I wanted to make sure that my images weren't like sideshow pics. I was also worried because I tend to be wary of someone who might not be in the best state of mental health. Turns out that all fears were unnecessary- we are now good friends and we have always both been very happy with images that we've made. Sometimes, I actually remove her scars if I think they take away from an image, but I don't do any re-touching if they seem to strengthen an image. She also happens to have one of the best tattoos that I've ever seen- the orchids that wrap around her side and over her left breast. I tend to have a intense dislike for tattoos over the breast (or face)- it seems like a taboo that is best avoided. But I think that it works exquisitely on Katelyn.

Saturday, September 18, 2010


Fayth is someone with whom I've done a couple of suspension shoots with. She is from Florida, but she passes through Philadelphia every year right before Christmas. So it seems that we do an annual shoot now. This shoot was a quick shoot without a suspension. I had just started shooting in the new shower, and was complaining that I thought it looked too institutional compared to the beautiful tile of the former shower. So she asked if I had some heavy duty pliers...

Friday, September 17, 2010

Adrian Louise

Adrian Louise is someone that I just recently started working with. I have not really taken on anybody new in the past year, and I tend to be apprehensive about doing so. This is because I'm very happy working with the few muses that I now work with, and who never let me down. Well, Adrian Louise is awesome! I've worked with her twice now, and plan to keep working with her!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


Kess is a powerhouse in a very petit package. She is also like a monkey- she can climb anything, as exhibited in a couple of the window shots. She is extremely quiet- we rarely say much when shooting, but she is definitely quite the muse. Like Tanya Dakin, she has worked with so many photographers, and everyone gets something a little different from her. It's easy to get a very glamourous image out of her, despite the fact that she is half the size of a super model. I prefer to try and extract the soulful facial expressions that are just waiting to be tapped into.

Friday, September 10, 2010


Mer is one of my closest friends. She is probably my favorite person to shoot with. Shoots with her are always very laid back and typically 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.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Tali DeMar

Tali DeMar is a burlesque performer based in L.A., who specifically hired me to do a fetish oriented shoot with her for her website-  We also did some pin-up stuff, but it was the grittier (yet classic) Bettie Page fetish imagery that she was really looking for. She is a blast to shoot with, and I can't wait until she swings by Philadelphia again.