Wednesday, October 1, 2014

About Modeling

It has been far too long since I added a blog post here, and for that, I apologize.  My full-time job has been taking more and more of my time, and the kids' activities even more.  Modeling jobs have seemed fewer and harder to come by with my current schedule, but I still take what I can get.

Two or three years ago, I was approached by a fellow model at the University of North Texas.  He wanted to produce a book for models detailing the profession and loaded with photos of sample poses.  I loved the idea and immediately signed on.  At first, the book was to be strictly for the models at UNT, but he also had ambitions for making it more widely available.

We did a photo shoot in one of the empty drawing studios at the university in mid-May, just after the spring semester had ended.  I did examples of short gesture poses and what would be longer ones while he snapped photos.  He had tried to get a rotating platform, but that idea had proven to be impractical.  Instead, I turned 45 degrees for each pose to get four different angles.  I did quite a few solo poses, poses with a female model, and poses with another male model.

For whatever reason, the university art department, which, according to this model/author/photographer, had at first seemed enthusiastic about the idea, soon seemed to lose interest in the project.  Still, this fellow model talked about producing a more widely available book.  Unfortunately, life intervened as it so often does, and he had to move a bit further away.  We still communicated sporadically via email, and he finally got a few spiral-bound copies of the book printed and sent to the models who had participated.

He had planned on retouching the photos to remove the backgrounds and put more highlight on the model and the poses, but he hadn't had time to do that yet.  The photos in the book I received were dark, grainy black and white images.

There were a total of seven models of various shapes and sizes photographed for the book, three males and four females.  I think I was, by quite a few years, the oldest model in the book.  When I look at my copy, I am struck by the pure beauty of the pure human form, the lines and shapes.  We are truly amazing creatures, and it sometimes makes me sad that society insists that we keep ourselves covered at virtually all times.

The book makes me proud of my almost 30 years as an art model, and it also makes me want to do my own book.  I envision a project that is part memoir, part how-to, and part photo-journal.  Rather than photos in an empty studio against a plain backdrop, I would love to illustrate it with color photos taken in an actual drawing class, with students and artists busy working.  Maybe one day...

Here's a sample page from the book I received from my former UNT colleague.  Out of respect for the other models who participated, I chose a page that featured only my solo poses.  Needless to say, the image is not quite safe for work.  Click on the image to see the full size version...

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