Be warned – this post features nudity.

I wasn’t intending to post any of these images to my blog originally, but they seemed to take on a life of their own as you shall see.

A couple of years ago a woman I met on a date contacted me later to commission me to shoot some pictures of her, including some nudes; she’s been a yoga teacher for many years, and although nearing 60 was still in good shape so wanted to record this before time caught up with her.  We left the nakedness until the end of the day’s shooting, and despite capturing some shots earlier in the day that I was very happy with, these final shots were poor.

I was disappointed in myself and for my subject, but there were a number of reasons for the failure:

  • By leaving it to the end of the day my model was tired
  • The location we had chosen, whilst dramatic, was very cold
  • We hadn’t fully agreed what sort of shots she would like beforehand

In these circumstances I think she just wanted to get it over with and so did I!  The failure got under my skin, if you’ll excuse the term, and so with the freedom of being single this year, it was an aspect of my photography I wanted to nail and so I’ve worked with models several times this year leading up to a session with a model called Joceline a couple of weeks ago.  Though she has a YouTube channel entitled “Joceline’s Twilight Years” she still has a couple of decades on my unfortunate client, but with a background in ballet, she too is in excellent shape.

This time I was prepared.  Heavily.  I had ideas aplenty for what I wanted to shoot, so much so that in four hours we didn’t get through them all, and I’d planned sets and lighting too (all in my lounge!).  I was largely delighted with the results.

There was a small exception though.  I’ve long been a fan of an image by Rudolf Koppitz that I saw in Bradford’s National Media Museum featuring a nude set against a dark background provided by three women cloaked in black.  On the day I aimed to recreate this with a composite of 4 images of Joceline, but I wasn’t happy with the result.  Sitting at my Photoshop screen I was determined to produce something a little more creative, and it occurred to me that some shots featuring an outfit straight from IKEA (lampshade and curtain) reminded me of ladies day at the races.  It wasn’t long before I’d produced this spoof image.

And that might have been the end of it were it not for a conversation with a superb floral artist at the other end of the country initially about a series on BBC 4 about Japanese art, including Ikebana, which she also produces.  Our conversation initially focused on serious elements of composition, minimalism and negative space, but at some point I shared the nudes above, including my Ascot pastiche.

Which is when she threw down the gauntlet of producing something for the forthcoming Wimbledon championships, without copying the famous 1970’s tennis girl poster.  Naturally I responded.

 
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4 thoughts on “NSFW (Not Safe From Williams?)

    1. Thanks Eduardo, all are processed differently of course, but in the case of the Ascot one, there was already a slightly purple colour cast to the sheet, which didn’t match the “hat” so I rather than fight it I decided to apply it across the whole image; that then inspired me to do the same in green for my tennis image.

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