I have been shooting a little side project of mine on and off for about a year now. It didn’t have much direction to it, it was just kind of moving at its own pace. I think I now know what I want to do with it.
For as long as I can remember I have loved nude portraits. Not just fashion, glamour or nudes that are meant to draw you in with the attraction of the model. But portraits where the subject opens up to the camera completely. It is the feeling of having nothing to hide. If you have ever seen the work of Jock Sturges you will fully understand. He has worked with nudists for several years, and has created moving portraits of entire families. Yes, there has been controversy surrounding his work as a lot of the time his work is of people under the age of 18. But if you really look at his work it is art and his work is the epitome of non-sexual nude photography. It is just beautiful. Just because someone is nude does not mean it is sexual. Once again, not up for argument, if you disagree just go away now.
I have some ideas for nude portraits coming up here in the very near future. This will not be my normal work, well in style maybe, but the idea is to also bring awareness to issues and causes I believe in. I am still in the planning stage and still getting people on board to help but there is a possible gallery in LA who may be willing to help along with numerous models who may be donating their time to this cause. The cause is based on animal cruelty and getting as many donations to help cover vet expenses for animals who have been neglected and mistreated, abused and left for dead or in some cases used in dog fighting. There are several organizations out there who do this wonderful work of helping these animals recover but it is expensive, right now I am still trying to find the right organization to work with. Hopefully it will all come together soon!
The people who know me know that I am a huge animal lover. I take in strays, rescue dogs and cats, and if I could have enough land and money I would probably open up a rescue facility myself. This is something I personally believe in, I know there are several other people out there who feel the same way I do and those who donate more time and money than I do as well. It is not just about having people donate to this cause, it is also about bringing awareness to it. If you know of someone who is mistreating their own pet, report them. We live in a society of “minding our own business”, in fact people do not report animal abuse, child abuse or domestic violence the way they should. There are those who cannot defend themselves or speak up for themselves. It is obvious when someone is mistreating another living being, and if you feel it in your heart or your gut is telling you that what you saw was wrong, then at least take a closer look and report it if you feel it is wrong. Do not just ignore it and think “it’s not my problem” or that someone else will report it. You are that someone else.
So why nude portraits? Because they are beautiful. And I feel that using beauty is the best way to fight the ugly in this world.