I took these photos of a friend two weeks ago, near the Potomac river, in a quite private spot away from the public.
My wife assisted me with bouncing light to the model, and retouching her hair and makeup. This was an informal photo session, we made a little bit of planning with a different idea in mind and we ended shooting nudes, which turned out to be fantastic, thanks to all those rich textures given by the light and trees that were around us.
Nude photography is not as easy as it seems to be, it requires experience in direction and lighting. Even the most beautiful bodies can cast weird shadows and look awkward if lighting is not managed well or if model is not directed properly.
I took hundreds of photos that day, but just few came out very well. One big factor was the natural light, I can’t control its intensity nor its direction, so I had to move constantly and change my point of view to explore different angles and lighting setups, while my wife was helping me reflecting light with a reflector, or shiny panel that fills in unpleasant shadows. The model was actually quite patient during the photo shoot given the amount of spiders, mosquitoes and other bugs in that area. We were prepared for that environment, but you can’t avoid spiderwebs and other things while moving in the forest.
Another factor that impacted the photo session was the confidence between the model and me. If the model is not used to do nudes she will take time to feel confident and look relaxed and natural, and the photographer will take time exploring poses and angles, and suggest things to the model so photos look more harmonic and elegant.
These photos have very little retouching. I usually shoot in color and then adjust black and white tones with Adobe Lightroom. A better option is shooting in RAW format, which allows to have more control over the original photos.
As I’ve mentioned in other articles, I like adding grain to my photos so they look as film.