Thursday, January 3, 2013

Is the grass really greener on the other side? NSFW

Those who know me a little also know that i teach a lot of workshop about model photography and lighting with my colleague peter but i had to know if the grass could be greener on the other side...

So i did a bit of industrial espionage and followed a group workshop.

The Workshop was with 2 professional photographers who work a lot for the dutch Playboy, as i understood there are 2 teams working for the dutch glamour and nude magazine, one of them is Toonen-wientjes and the other team is the 2 guys that gave the workshop, Patrick and Rene.

We had a really good and very experienced model, be sure to check out her website if you would like to see more of her work

The group of students was a bit too big for a workshop, more than 15 photographers is really a lot for 1 model, but it created time for me to have a chat with Patrick about his work for Playboy and the way they work and create their images.

what struck me is the way these commercial shoots are organized, there's really a lot of last minute improvisation and the lighting setups are often very simple, often ambient light only or with the help of a small reflector. There's always an artistic director working for Playboy on the set, he gives a direction to every shot.

Poses are often repeated and if you check out the magazine you will see how it is in fact really repetitive between different shoots without being an exact copy off course.

The girls they shoot are often really beginners and are scouted especially for Playboy or come knocking at the door and want to get published in Playboy, every shoot is preceded by a small test-shoot with the model where they decide if the model will get cover, centerfold, non centerfold shoot or she might be rejected if the pictures do not appeal to the publisher

The most important things in this kind of shoots are =
1.  A model with the correct "girl next door" look and willing to go for the full Monty off course
2.  Styling of the model, even when wearing almost nothing there's always a bit of styling and it's important
3.  Location must breathe "money" "luxury" "expensive"

the rest is combined talent and hard work!

I also offer you some shots form the workshop, due to the nature of the used light and the way i wanted the results to look there was heavy post-processing, something that is very usual for this commercial glamour style photography. NSFW pictures, click on read more !