Stunning Nude Photographs: Using “The Magic Hours”

This is an exquisite picture of a young model. Even if there was nothing else in the shot to make it special, the simple gesture of her grasping her wet hair makes for an interesting image.

However, what really makes this particular image stand out is the lighting. Fortunately, it’s not difficult to figure out how the lighting was achieved. In addition, it’s relatively simple for anyone to get similar results.

The most important thing is shooting at just the right time of day. However, it’s also important to know that this window of time is very brief.

From the trees in the background, it’s obvious that the picture was taken outside. From the golden glow of the light, you can be certain it was either taken very soon after sunrise or just before sunset (when the sun was low in the sky).

These two times of day are often referred to as The Magic Hours.

However, to get a picture like this, you won’t have an hour. In reality, you might have just a few minutes.

From the highlights on her hair and the rim of light on her body (most visible in the bottom right corner of the image), you can be certain that she had her back to the setting (or rising) sun.

To fill in any shadows on her face and the front of her body, a gold reflector was used to bounce light from the sun back onto her (further enhancing the golden glow).

 

Sign up for the free Inside Glamour Photography newsletter and instantly receive your free report 7 Killer Mistakes to Avoid When Shooting Nude Models!” You’ll find a quick and easy sign-up box at the top right of each page.

 Tips, Techniques, and Ideas for Glamour and Nude Photography

 

What Can You Learn From A Naked And Annoyed 19-Year-Old?

The story behind this picture can teach you a valuable lesson. Trust me, I was there.

I took this shot many years ago. In fact, it’s from one of the first three or four nude shoots I’d ever done. I wish I could tell you that I was in complete control of the shoot and impressed this model with my expertise. Unfortunately, that’s not how it happened.

Like all new photographers, I was struggling to juggle all the variables that a nude photo shoot requires. However, unlike the models I’d photographed before, Tara was very experienced and had little patience for my frequent confusion regarding what to do next.

During one of the many self-caused delays, I looked over at her and she was staring at me with a look of disdain that 19-year-old girls seem to do so well. Still, I couldn’t help myself. I quickly snapped off this shot.

In spite of the circumstances, I really like this picture. It’s not posed. It’s honest. It’s authentic.

Looking back, I wish I hadn’t added the extra grain and the purple tone; but it was during my early days with Photoshop and I couldn’t help myself. Unfortunately, I’ve since lost the original slide.

So what’s the lesson to be learned from my experience?  Simply this:

If you’re new to shooting glamour or nude images, don’t worry about things going wrong during a shoot. Trust me, things are going to go wrong. Simply accept that fact and move on.

And don’t worry about being nervous before a shoot. There’s nothing wrong with a little nervousness. Nerves are proof that you care (or so I’ve been told).

But here’s the good news: Not only can I guarantee you’ll survive the shoot, I can guarantee you’ll learn a lot in the process.

And before you know it, you’ll be the one with the experience.

 

Sign up for the free Inside Glamour Photography newsletter and instantly receive your free report 7 Killer Mistakes to Avoid When Shooting Nude Models!” You’ll find a quick and easy sign-up box at the top right of each page.

 Tips, Techniques, and Ideas for Glamour and Nude Photography

 

 

How to Choose The Perfect Nude Model For The Job

This image is from one of my favorite nude shoots ever. Though the paint makes things appear a bit messy, it was actually a very simple shoot to execute. The model, Jubilee, is one of the most free-spirited and experimental nude young models I’ve ever worked with.

The scene was very simply lit. I simply used four flash heads bounced into four umbrellas to light the set very evenly. This was done so Jubilee could freely move around a fairly large area and still be well lit.

Apart from the lighting, all that was required was putting up some seamless white paper and making a quick trip to the art supply store to pick up some inexpensive paints.

I gave Jubilee the paints, a few foam brushes, placed her in the middle of the large white “canvas” and gave her the instruction, “Do whatever you want.”

From that point on, all I had to do was photographically document the proceedings.

With this type of shoot (one in which the model will be setting the pace), the most important thing you can do is find the right model. Preferably, one who is fearless in front of the camera, likes to experiment, has few inhibitions, and is willing to do just about anything it takes to get great pictures.

Since I had worked with Jubilee many times before, I knew she would be the perfect girl for the job.

From a purely business standpoint, this set of pictures has been one of my most profitable ever.

Not only did I sell the pictures from the set you see here many times over, I also sold images that I took immediately after the shoot featuring Jubilee in the shower and bath washing the paint off her body.

The most important lesson to be learned from this shot is that sometimes the most important talent a nude photographer can possess is the ability to choose the right nude model for the job.

 

Sign up for the free Inside Glamour Photography newsletter and instantly receive your free report 7 Killer Mistakes to Avoid When Shooting Nude Models!” You’ll find a quick and easy sign-up box at the top right of each page.

 Tips, Techniques, and Ideas for Glamour and Nude Photography

 

 

 

Tips For Photographing Very Young Models

This image includes two factors you’ll want to know about if you’re going to shoot glamour and nude  photographs of young women.

I took this shot as part of a set for a magazine that features younger woman (primarily 18 and 19-year-olds).

When shooting nude images of models this age it’s important not to style the shoot in a way that makes them  look even younger than they actually are.

Believe it or not, it wasn’t long ago that publications featuring young models had them posing with teddy  bears and lollipops. Fortunately, that style is very rarely seen these days.

However, you’ll still want your pictures to portray young models as having a sense of youthful innocence. To  help do this, I instructed this model to apply minimal makeup. I also supplied her with accessories that  convey a relatively youthful style (pink hairband and bracelets).

Along with the youthful styling, there is a second important factor in this image that is often overlooked by  many photographers.

At first glance, it appears that the model is resting her head on her left hand. However, in reality, she’s holding her head up so it barely touches her hand. The reason for this is that if she were to actually rest her head on her hand, the left side of her face would – for lack of a better word – have a “squished” look to it.

This potential problem is something you’ll have to keep an eye on no matter what style of photography you’re doing or what age model you’re shooting.

 

Sign up for the free Inside Glamour Photography newsletter and instantly receive your free report 7 Killer Mistakes to Avoid When Shooting Nude Models!” You’ll find a quick and easy sign-up box at the top right of each page.

 Tips, Techniques, and Ideas for Glamour and Nude Photography


 

The One Unbreakable Rule Of Nude Photography

While looking through some old files, I came across this shot of a girl named Kitty. When I saw it, I knew it would be a good idea to include it here. Not because there’s anything special about the picture itself, but to use it as a visual reminder to those of you who do nude work.

As I’m sure you’ve already noticed, Kitty looks very, very young. Though I can assure you that she was 18-years-old at the time of the shoot, she certainly doesn’t look like it. That’s why I went to great lengths to confirm her age before I even considered picking up a camera.

When it comes to nude models, there’s only one type that you should absolutely never work with. Quite obviously, that’s the underage girl.

Never photograph anyone nude who is under the legal age. It’s impossible for me to stress this enough. Before you even consider setting up a shoot with a model, make sure she’s of legal age.

You’ll need to find out what the minimum age is for your particular location. This advice also applies to those of you reading this who live outside the United States. The legal age differs from state to state and country to country.

Photographing an underage girl is a mistake you never want to make. As I’m sure you’re well aware, the legal ramifications can be extremely serious.

 

Sign up for the free Inside Glamour Photography newsletter and instantly receive your free report 7 Killer Mistakes to Avoid When Shooting Nude Models!” You’ll find a quick and easy sign-up box at the top right of each page.

 Tips, Techniques, and Ideas for Glamour and Nude Photography