read the info about my Model Marathon, you are up to date. After two
hours, Brooke & I were finishing up our one-on-one sitting together in
the natural light of the back
stairs. Right on time, Victoria rings the front doorbell. I
stop working with Brooke long enough to bring Victoria in & show her
around. She says hello to Brooke (both models are from the Seattle
area & they were acquainted with each other). I show Victoria a
room which she can use to get ready, return to Brooke to finish up the final
roll of images on the back stairs, and by that time, Victoria is ready to
go. So, we get started.
I was a
little bit nervous about this part of the day: while I had an
opportunity to get to know Brooke gradually (as you can see in her "Getting
Started" page), I was asking Victoria to dive into the deep end
immediately. But Victoria was terrific -- she's an experienced pro (see
her web site here or see her One
Model Place profile) -- she was ready, warm, and took to the concept
immediately. (By the way, Brooke has a One
Model Place profile, too).
here was my thinking -- most of the two-model images I've seen were
either highly sexually charged or were of two models that were visually
unrelated to each other. I was clear that I wanted something
different. My instructions to Victoria & Brooke were...
sensual but not sexual,
with supportive physical contact,
I took a test exposure with the digital camera (this
image on the left), and I think they did an excellent job in achieving a
feeling of intimacy without sexual overtones. What do you think?
(I'll admit that the
exposure (the digital camera was set on "manual") wasn't
perfect -- it was somewhat overexposed. I cleaned that up with my
image editing software, applying the sepia tone at the same time).
The film images which follow were exposed correctly, but I'm learning
that improperly exposed digital images are difficult to
I'm human -- some men are "breast" men; others like legs,
but I like abdomens, and I especially like Brooke's muscle tone
shown in this picture. I also like the "jog" to her
thing happened after this exposure: Victoria suggested that
both she & Brooke could look at a spot on the wall behind me
& to my left. I stopped that -- maybe it's just me, but I
don't like images were the model is looking off into the
distance. When I see pictures like that, I wonder what's
holding the models' attention. So, I ask both models to take
- Give the
camera eye contact,
- Look at
something within the image boundaries, or
- Close their
I had never
articulated that before, even to myself, but as soon as I said it, I
knew I had something. Such is photography -- you've got to
examine what works, verbalize it, and use it as a guideline.
If you can't talk about it, you'll never learn from it.
don't know about you, but I like the eye contact much better.
So, I ask the
models to exchange positions, and we make a few more
is a favorite image from this portion of the Modeling Marathon.
I like the serene smile on Victoria's face, the light on both models'
faces, the jutting of Victoria's hip, and the position of Brooke's
leg. And I like the physical contact. I have to admit that
I didn't have much idea of what to expect other than trying for
"sensual but not sexual", but these models exceeded all
Usually, I've got
to know a model (i.e. have worked with her at least once) before I try
something like this, but in this case, their experience made this
possible. They were immediately comfortable with me and with
each other, and that greatly helped me. Thanks, ladies!
to heart my request that they keep their focus within the image or
on the camera lens, Victoria took it upon herself to turn around
& give me some looks at a totally different shape. That's
another thing an experienced model will do for you -- she'll take
instructions easily, will embrace the overall thought, and will keep
moving to provide you with variations of the concept. That's
important enough to reiterate: when
working with an experienced model, the model will keep moving &
will keep showing you variations; your role as a photographer is to
convey the overall concept, select the variations being shown to
you, provide the model feedback, etc. When working
with a less experienced model, the model tends to stay still &
expects you to guide them into the pose you want -- that makes for
slower sittings & often produces poses that look unnatural.
I especially like
the light on Brooke's face & her hand on Victoria's waist.
is a digital image I made of this variation. Like I mentioned
earlier, I had slightly mis-set the exposure manually, yielding an
overexposed image. Some notes:
- At this point,
I lack the digital editing skills to "fix" images that
are slightly off.
- I couldn't
tell you why the "colorizing" of the color images from
the digital camera comes out more coppery than
"colorizing" the scanned film & paper images,
despite using the same settings.
- If I am to
continue to use the digital camera to check the lighting, I
should also be more careful & make sure I set the exposure
Again, I get
feedback from viewers -- many of you find this site
instructive. Thus, I'm committed to showing not only the
"keepers" from a sitting but also sharing some of the
mistakes or failed experiments -- after all, these are as
instructive as the successes.
the traditional materials of film & paper.
these images don't quite work for me. I can't quite say why --
the light is very nice, the models are gorgeous, and yet it just
doesn't work. What do you think? Oh, well -- they can't
all be winners.
Okay, two final
images, using a different setup:
flew. There was an hour between Victoria's arrival & Brooke's
departure, but Victoria needed a little time to get ready (during which I
made the final solo exposures of Brooke), and Brooke needed a little time
to get ready to leave (including time when I made sure
that her ride was here to pick her up), so in reality, we didn't have a
full hour of posing time together. But that's fine -- we had plenty
of time to expose three rolls of film. Some assessment notes:
than the basic "feel" I wanted in these images, I really
didn't have much of concept for these images. This was, in part,
because I didn't really know either of these models. But the
experience of both models & their comfort with each other
compensated for my lack of preparation.
some reason, I expect images with two or more models to do more
story-telling than images of a single model, and these images don't
really tell a story. The models (and some images) are very
lovely, but the story is absent. Something to think about for
wasn't enough time to try more than one lighting setup, which was
essentially the same setup Brooke & I used for her last solo
deserves kudos: she arrived ready to go & willing to dive right
in. That was terrific.
just me, but I don't feel that I really know
what a model looks like until I've photographed her. I don't know
why, maybe it's because that I have a certain style, and I rarely get to
see models posing for pictures with a similar style. So, first
sittings with new models is mostly a "Get Acquainted"
session. I look forward to working with either of these models