Last month I had the change to shoot with Melissa Troutt again. She was one of the first models that I worked with when I started working in nude photography and the first I shot only nudes with (my prior nude work had been at the end of other types of shoots). When I found out she was coming through Tennessee I was happy to get the chance to work with her again. She was as skilled and talented as I remember and hopefully my skills were a better match to hers this time. Just one photo from our shoot for today as I think it deserves to stand alone.
Things are finally settling down and I’ve been able to get back to shooting of late. A couple weeks ago I had a chance to work with a new model, Laura New. The weather cooperated perfectly after a few cool days, the day of our shoot was sunny and warm enough for outdoor shooting in comfort. The mountain water is still too cold to get into it yet, but we still had a fun and productive shoot. There are several other very nice ones while outside, came back and did some more traditional artistic nudes. Laura was a joy to work with and I hope to get the chance to do so again. I think my favorite photo of the day is this one:
I’m still debating if I’m going to start posting photos with nudity directly to the blog. Not ready to do that yet, so the second best photo of the day doesn’t get shown yet. It’ll be in the gallery in a few days when I get that back up and running.
I think I have all the issues from the site move completed. The blog is back working. Next I’m going to catch up on some posts I wrote, but couldn’t post over the last couple of weeks then get the gallery back working again along with the new site design. Again thanks for your patience while working out the bugs.
East Tennessee weather is really quite interesting in the spring. For example Saturday evening a model and I were out into the foothills on a shoot until within a few minutes of darkness setting in. I wore a t-shirt and she posed nude and neither of us got cold (at least until she got into the cold mountain runoff water). Today it was snowing when I went to lunch. The high Saturday was a bit over 70. The high today I don’t think made it to 40.
In any case after a long time off, partly by choice and partly from outside issues, I’ve finally gotten been able to get back into shooting. I worked with three models over the last week, two new ones and a welcome repeat of one of the first models that I worked with after getting serious, the above mentioned Saturday trip with Melissa. Some thoughts on the sessions and photos will be coming soon, but it feels nice to be back into shooting again.
It’s been about four months since my big manifesto post and I’ve not posted anything since. I felt I probably should explain a bit. After that manifesto I first took some time off to kind of clear my head. As I said in that manifesto I was going to look at moving back toward artistic nude style work. I’d learned pretty early that the number of models in this area willing and comfortable doing nudes is limited. I knew this change of focus would reduce my pool of potential models and was okay with that.
The problem has been that I’ve just had an amazing number of shoots not come to pass over the last two months. I’ve had many shoots scheduled since the first of December and not a one of them came to pass. In truth though I’ve had more frustrations than good results since back in May of last year. That’s not to say I haven’t had some great experiences and worked with some great models, but those unfortunately have been few and far between.
Monday a model that I’d scheduled to shoot with didn’t show up with no warning and no reply to my query to her. It’s left me frustrated and for the first time a little angry. Usually I shrug and write it off as a lesson learned about the model, but for some reason this one irritated me more than normal. There was nothing special about the model and she didn’t seem more talented or more beautiful and there is
My initial thought when writing this was to post her profiles to warn others, but that fell like being petty. In the end I’m just going to chalk it up as another flaky model and move on.
If you’re a model in East Tennessee or coming through East Tennessee who is interested or poses nude and is reliable enough to actually show up and interested in working together let me know. I’m beginning to wonder if anyone like that actually exists anymore.
I’ve not posted in a while, once since August 1 and that was almost a test post on something just too odd not to share. What’s even more unusual is that I’ve not shot that much over the last month. In fact unless a possible shoot on the 30th comes about, I will not have taken a single photograph this month. In fact I’ve only done one shoot since that last entry and that one was just a few days later. It was a great shoot with two models that I’ve worked with before, though not together. I enjoyed it and got some great photos from it.
I fully expected to take a pause for a bit after that shoot as I had a trip out of town followed by a very hectic period in my “real” job. I figured that I’d be back well before the end of the month. Then, some things happened. Some were related to photography and some related to my personal life. There were broken promises and lies. There was even a bit of betrayal. There had been some good things for me this summer, but also a few painful ones and some stressful moments.
Finally I’d just reached a point where picking up the camera didn’t seem like the most fun idea. In fact I struggled through to finish processing photos that I still owed some models from the last few weeks because I just didn’t have any enthusiasm. It wasn’t that I didn’t enjoy photography, it was more like I just wasn’t enjoying what I was doing.
I’ve not enjoyed my work as much this year. I’ve shot more than ever and accomplished some ideas that I’ve wanted to do. The problem is that most of the best work from this summer I couldn’t show here because when I started I made the decision to keep the site PG-13. I don’t think that was a good choice. I do all kinds or work, but I came into photography from sketching and drawing nudes and truly that’s where my interest lies. I might get paid more to take a senior photo type portrait, but in the end I want to create art that I’m proud of and my passion there truly lies in the nude. By denying those on this site, I think I’m leaving out an important part of myself and my work.
In the end I decided to take some time off. One good thing about the fact that I don’t make my living as a photographer is that I have that option, to just not do it for a while. It helps to clear the mind and I’ve done it before. The last time I did it I decided to focus more on my non-nude work. I think I may have gone too far in that direction though. Go to Hugh MacLeod’s page about his book Ignore Everyone: And 39 Other Keys to Creativity (which I have sitting next to me half read right now and recommend). Read item #7 under Keep Your Day Job (it’s number eight in the book) on the Sex & Cash theory. In short you have two kinds of work, the sexy, creative kind (sex) and the kind that pays the bills (cash). I have a good full time job that gives me a bit of both. I do other side work for the cash part. I need photography to feed that creative side.
So I’m going to change my direction a bit.
- I’m going to focus more on nude work, especially artistic nudes, but will still will do the other things. I’m looking for balance.
- I’m going to contact some models that I enjoyed working with and not worked with in a while
- I’m going to go back to some projects that I’d put on hold waiting for people who didn’t deliver
- I’m going to ignore the assholes
This web site isn’t going away. I’m not sure where it will end up right now. It may lose the PG-13 rating and start showing more skin. I have another domain name that I picked up for one of the projects I abandoned when the model I’d hoped to work with it on basically bailed on me after rescheduling more times that I ever should have put up with. It might become the nude site and I leave this one PG-13. This is a work in progress, but I don’t think things are going to be quiet or boring for a while.
Your know it’s going to be an odd day when you get home from work and at the house next door you see two people standing on the roof of the storage shed with a bow shooting at a target a lot closer to the house than I’d ever feel comfortable with. I’m just glad I had a garage between me and them. The aluminum ladder was a particularly nice touch.
It’s been a rough week. My trip out of town at the end of last week was a littel more stressful than one would like and then I come back and almost immediately have a family emergency to deal with. Everything is fine now, but I think I’ve undone all the stress relief the vacation brought me.
I did have a nice shoot with a model today that I’d rescheduled with after we’d had to postpone a few months back. Not much that I’ll be able to post to the blog as I’m trying to keep it PG-13 and most of the work were nudes, but I’ll probably have something. Of course between the vacation and other events of the week I’m quite a bit behind on my photos, including shoots that I did while on my vacation, but should be able to get some things online later in the week.