Capturing the artistic nude
Start with an understanding of your creative vision
You can only be creative and artistic once you have formed a vision in your mind. each photographer will have a their own unique way of dreaming up images, as a result of their own influences and experiences.
once you have a vision in mind the first step is to make a sketch of it. a bit like the songwriter who wakes up in the middle of the night and has to scribble on a piece of paper some lyrics, your photographic vision needs to be written down as no doubt it will disappear as fast as it came.
once i have the initial idea the next step is to source the location. if it’s an outdoor location i always visit and take photographs prior to the shoot. This is so that on arrival with the model we know exactly where to start.
one of the most important things to bear in mind is the time of day you plan the shoot. decide from your sketch what type of lighting would benefit the image, then plan the shoot around that time of day. if you decide to shoot in the studio similar considerations need to be taken into account, i.e. what style of lighting is required and what sort of background is needed. of course props and accessories all need to be on hand.
Before you begin the shoot chat with the model as it’s imperative that they understand your vision. Without their cooperation and interpretation there’s a good chance the image will not even get off the ground.
once all of these factors are sorted we can then get down to creating a fineart nude image. There is no right or wrong way to start the shoot; i always go on gut instinct.
i’m always looking for that connection with the model, making sure that they understand what’s required of them from the shoot. it’s called the decisive moment, pressing that shutter at exactly the right time, when the lighting is right and the model is in the best position. it’s the difference between a great photographer and someone who’s just taking pictures and simply hoping for the best.