FOR A LIMITED TIME ONLY... I am offering a "miniature" version of my full blown photoshoot
Here is what you get:
3 studio hours
3 looks - choose up to three concepts from fashion, glamour, beauty, mood art and fine art nude
Professional hair and makeup
Photos potentially used in my book (due out spring 2017)
Limited Time Only - Book now to secure your shoot
Price only $225 (reg. $495)*
*$50 deposit at booking
*All shoots will be conducted either on Wednesdays or Thursdays at 9am or 11am.
* Submissions will be made to a minimum of two magazines, but no guarantees made for acceptance
*Model Release required of course
*Offer is only open to models...not female portrait clients
Why am I doing this? This campaign offers elements that are beneficial to both of us and will sell out very quickly. I am building content for my upcoming book, especially in the artistic nude genre. Additionally, I am offering content to my professional digital artist group made up of the most respected fine art composite artists in the world. Your images may possibly end up in some amazing art pieces.
Can’t afford $225?? Get the fee waived...
I am willing to waive the fees for shooting content strictly for my fine art nude book. Concepts will include up to full nude shots in a classy, professional and very artistic manner. The moodboard for this shoot may include topless or bottomless fashion, full nude and/or implied mood art, dark beauty black and white vibes, bodyscaping and more. No glamour. The only exception to the fee waiving is that the model will be asked to pay $50 to cover half of my professional hair and makeup costs ($25 deposit on booking).
Allie Summers Cover of Tenebrous Magazine
Some models just have that special quality that sets them apart from the pack. Allie Summers is one of those models. This photo of Allie was recently featured on the cover of Tenebrous Magazine. Tenebrous is a periodical that features only redhead models. Other photos from our shoot were feature on the rear cover along with a 12 feature spread at the front of the magazine.
Allie and I will be hosting a workshop for photographers and models in November. Details are to follow. You can view all of Allies images here.
Model Jami Watts
I am really loving the artistic nude images that photographers around the globe are creating. So many great ones like Tait Phoenix, John P. Dunnigan, Lawrence Drayton, BmanPhotos, and many many hundreds more. I am especially inspired by the fine art nude photographers posting on 500px...my favorite photography sharing site. I have always injected classy nudity into my images, but mostly in a beauty kind of genre. For most of the rest of this year, I will predominately shooting fine art nude in black and white format. My ultimate goal is to create a table book using these images. If you are a model also interested in this genre, please message me and we'll talk.
This set of photos was shot with Jami Watts in December 2015 and I have been sitting on most of them. The video below consists of unedited images from our shoot. I hope you enjoy
Allie SummersAllie Summers
Not all photos are a huge hit on social medias. In fact, this photo did not get a single comment, and very few likes on Facebook. Pretty much the same result from twitter and Instagram. But who cares...I like it and that is all that is important to me. I will say, this image got a very high rating on 500px, which in my opinion is the best photo sharing site in the entire world for photographers.
Anyway, I love the mood, the vibe and Allie Summers is one of my most favorite models. We will be shooting again in the fall...it will be great as always.
I was thrilled when Kathy Richards (publisher) contacted me asking if she could publish Ashley's photos in Surreal Beauty Magazine. I don't often do magazine submissions, but am always willing to give up photos when approached by magazines. I love to see the models get published.
The model in this video is amazingly graceful. If you have this skill I would love to shoot with you. I can envision shooting this in the golden hour on a beach. I would shoot both video and stills. Please contact me.
Its always nice to see your work published in print. I am especially excited to be featured in Photography Masterclass Magazine. If you are interested in subscribing to this really well done magazine, you can get a free three month subscription here.
Poetry in Motion SeriesModel VikTory
There are three kinds of photos. Good photos, very good photos and great photos. I appreciate them all. I am occasionally asked what it takes to create a "great" fashion art or fine art photo. So, I am going to share what I believe it takes to make a GREAT photo. You will probably notice the simplicity of this answer...it's actually pretty straight forward. Since I shoot models...this article is about shooting models. Right?
First, you must have a great, beautiful, professional model. A professional model knows and understands how to position her body relative to the camera POV. She envisions how the lens is "seeing" her pose. She knows where the light is coming from and adjusts her pose accordingly. A professional model poses without hesitation or reluctance. She just brings it...taking chances. Actually an entire blog/article can be written on this topic, but these are a few important points.
Poetry in Motion SeriesModel VikTory Secondly, you must have an experienced professional hair and makeup artist. Don't fool yourself, for your photos to stand out, this is a critical component of process. Seek out great hair and makeup artists and pay them. Let your HMUA's get creative. Trust their artistic skills. Try not to direct your MUA too much...let the art flow from the professionals.
Third. The intangibles. You MUST have at least one of these: A great location, prop, wardrobe or concept. You can't just say..."go stand there" and expect to have a great photo. Sometimes all it takes is a simple prop. Maybe you have found an amazing vintage dress to build your mood board around. Location, location, location...this is the hard part, for me anyway, but can make the photo. Imagine a concept that will invoke some sort of emotion or something that tells a story.
Last, a great edit. You have your great model, a creative MUA, the intangible and directed an amazing photo shoot. But, the edit is the final piece of the puzzle that MUST be skillfully crafted, interesting and has an some aspect that makes the photo pop. Practice and study every day to improve that part of your trade.
If you don't have all four of these elements in your photo, you will probably have a very good image. Not every photo we create will be a "Great" photo, but it should always be our goal.
View more images from my shoot with the amazing model VikTory here.
Once in a while you meet people that just radiate talent. Aurora O'Brien is one of those people. Her passion for art is evident in everything she does. From modeling, to painting, acting, her cosplay booths at Comicon, and now her book publishing. Aurora and I have collaborated on several modeling projects in the past and are planning something epic for this fall. We met for lunch last week to discuss these plans and in general just talked about what we love...ART. Its always a pleasure to sit down with such a talent and share our passions with each other.
I would like to encourage you to support this wonderful artist and grab a copy of Aurora's sketch book. See for yourself the talent exploding from the pages. Click on this image to go to her page. The images further below are iPhone pics of some of the pages I snapped from my copy.
We all love a photo that tells a story. When I shot this image of Carmen Bay, I used a brown egg to kinda match her skin tone. However when I looked at it on the computer it just did not work. So, I decided to put a while cracked egg and other objects in her hands to see what might happen. Each photo tells a different story. Which is your favorite?
With the "egg" concept (not my original idea, I have seen multiple versions of the basic concept), we can create a different story just by using a different caption. I normally like to let the viewer of my photos develop their own interpretation, but observe how the story changes as you read different captions: "A true friend is someone who thinks that you are a good egg even though he knows that you are slightly cracked"; "I always like stories where someone gets egg on their face"; "Probably one of the most private things in the world is an egg until it is broken"; "The goodness of a good egg cannot make up for the badness of a bad one"; "An egg is always an adventure; the next one may be different"; "Don't put all your eggs in one basket".
For the second version of the image, I decided to put a bird nest with a couple baby birds in her hands. You can create your own interpretation, or if you are old, like me, you might remember this phrase: "A bird in hand is worth two in the Bush". Yeah, I like that one.
For something completely different the third version blends an artistic nude photo with the cosmos. Why not? After all, what does the artist do? He draws connections by tying invisible threads between things. He dives into history, be it the history of mankind, the geological history of the Earth or the beginning and end of the cosmos. Right?
I love story telling with photography. I think there is a place for humor at times. If an images draws ANY kind of emotion then I feel that is a successful image. You can comment...I would love to hear YOUR story(s). Oh, and you can see more of Carmen in her gallery.
Trench CoatZips upward from below breastsSplit in front and back
We all do it, right? Browse through the thrift stores for a hidden treasure. Props, clothing....weird shit? I have a shoot coming up tomorrow with Carmen Bay. I always love working with a model that is proactive in planning the shoot. We have been in contact for this shoot for months now. The last few weeks we really stepped up our communications and developed a phenomenal mood board. We both hit the thrift stores and here are a few of our finds. Added to the equation that Carmen has a very creative spirit and a "do whatever it takes get the shot" kind of mentality, we should really knock out some cool art.
Skull and beak
This black faux leather trench coat zips from just below the breast line and is split open below the zipper in front and back. Goodwill price: $12.99. Maybe we'll add a black mask or blindfold, or some kick ass boots...or some other cool props.
And check out the hawk/eagle skull that Carmen found at her thrift store. THIS is how you plan for a shoot. I can't wait to get into the studio, and I know you can't wait for the photos. Win Win.
Drea Nicole Beauty
About six months ago I made the decision to get in one "Beauty" look at the end of each photoshoot. I wanted to commit to improving my "beauty" editing skills and techniques. Perhaps the amazing edits we see on covers of Cosmopolitan, Vogue and other publications intrigued me enough to want to get a small taste of how to edit beauty.
So, for those who do follow my work, you have seen a portrait vibe beauty shot from almost all of my shoots. Fashion art, fine art, mood and artistic nude is where I live and where my heart is, but this "beauty" work has grown on me. Trust me when I say while I will never reach the level of the graphic artists that edit for the major magazines, it has been a blast to practice and learn what I now consider 'decent quality' basic beauty editing skill.
I am learning that there is a fine line in female portraiture where the image is highly glamorous but yet natural and exceedingly over photoshopped. In my edits, I try to leave some natural skin features such as lines, moles, etc etc. For me, it's important to never blur the image as a skin retouching technique.
First off, to get a good beauty shot you MUST have an amazingly talented professional makeup artist (in the case of this photo Dania Blanco). If you don't start with good makeup you will probably not have a great outcome. In this image of model Drea Nicole, much of what I am talking about is visible. Obviously the makeup is good. Secondly, Drea has uncanny perfect skin so the editing process is half done before I even start. If you look at Drea's arms, stomach and chest you will see alot of natural skin featuring.
On the face, there a few things in the photo worth mentioning. The specular highlights in Drea's eyes are the result of the tri-flector kit that I use for all of my beauty shots. I turn off all the studio lights and while looking into the models eyes move the reflectors until I get the effect I want. For the skin I clone at a very high opacity over imperfections, being careful to not blur any pixels. Dodge and burn are beauty editors best friends. By burning under the cheek bones, around the eyes and jawline you can mold the face and accentuate the makeup. Its the D&B that creates depth in the face and makes features and highlights pop.
Beauty editing is just a matter of practice. Anyone can do it. Its a skill a photographer can sell. You can't easily sell art...unless you are really good, and I am just not that good. But you CAN sell portrait work. My plan is to hopefully sell female portraiture in order to fund my other artistic dreams.
This is something I have been thinking about for a while now. Whenever I create an image that I totally love and then try to find a place on the art to stick my watermark, I find myself asking “why the hell am I doing this”?. The bottomline, for me at least, is WATERMARKS LOOK UGLY AND GET IN THE WAY OF THE ART.
So, I have decided to do something that I know my fellow photographer friends will question and think I have lost my mind.
HERE IT IS: From now on (or at least until something happens to change my mind) all my photos will be licensed Creative Commons Non-Commercial. That means, as long as I am given credit and a link back to ColbyFiles.com, anyone can use my images on their blogs, wallpaper, personal use – anything – as long as it is not used commercially.
Why am I doing this?
Okay, so here are some of the reasons:
1) Watermarks look ugly. Plain and simple.
2) I don’t have to maintain two versions of each image – one with a watermark and one without.
3) I choose to quit worrying about my images getting stolen.
Legitimate companies do not steal images to use commercially. So I don’t see logical fear there. As image search and recognition technology gets better and better, there will be no need to watermark things from a copyright perspective. In a very short time, we’ll be able to use online tools to find the original creator of an image. There are already services, like Google Reverse Image Search, and an app called TinEye that can help me easily find bottom-feeders that DO use my images commercially.
"Haunted" with Drea Nicole
The bottom line...It does not matter. if someone wants to steal your image they indeed will. If you don’t want your
images to get stolen, don’t put them on the internet. Simple as that.
I have registered most of my images with the copyright office and will continue until I get them all registered. I might be wrong, but if someone uses an image commercially without a proper license, it might be an easy lawsuit. Even then, I suppose the bottom feeder could claim they simply “repurposed” my art under the Fair Use provision of copyright law. So again, if we don’t want our images to get stolen, don’t put them on the internet.
4) More Google Juice
NOT using watermarks and using creative commons might encourage more and more people to use my image freely for fun, which in turn might increase my web traffic. Plus, if more people link to my images, the more Google juice that flows down the river, right?
5) Advertising via the watermark? Who cares?
Fact of the matter is, I will never make much money doing this. Instead of getting noticed by the watermark, perhaps the link backs might result in some print or download sales, and perhaps some paying portraiture clients. But, to think that my watermark might help me get noticed by someone that would like to shoot with me? Ridiculous. Let’s be real...if someone likes a photo, they can look in the description field for the credits information. Almost all social media platforms have my name right next to the image, even if it’s shared. So much for the advertising argument.
6) Lastly...THE EGO. GET OVER IT.
Besides the reasons stated above, perhaps the biggest reason I have watermarked my photos is my big fat ego. What a joke. Who do I think I am? Picasso? Ansel Adams? “Look at my amazing photo and see my logo?....that’s me”. LMAO. The important thing should be that the viewer enjoyed the art...or not.
So, I am turning a leaf. From now on it’s all about the art, just the art and nothing but the art. No logos. No watermarks. No chest pounding. No grandstanding. No more big deal about copyright infringements. Instead, if you like it...use it. If you like it...make it your wallpaper, use it in your blog, repost, share it, whatever you want. And if you are an upstanding member of the arts community, you’ll give me credit and link back. BUT MOSTLY: Just enjoy it.
In April of this year, my good friend and fellow photographer C. Edward Brice and I, took a couple models to the Imperial Sand Dunes near Yuma, Arizona. We encountered interesting weather, had amazing clouds, and basically everything just worked. Though the photos appear to be in a hot desert, it was actually rather chilly. We had rain and the wind was blowing. Our models, Madison Kaapke and Jami Watts were real troupers in getting past the elements and helping to create these amazing photos. This entire series is featured on my website under the "Featured Series" tab...or just click here.
As always...I would love to hear your thoughts. Just click the "Leave a Comment" tab.