Thank You for Letting Me Tell Your Story

visual storytellingMotivations… 

I’ve encountered so many in my years of celebrating the personalities of people though the magic of photography. The most interesting motivations go beyond merely recording one’s likeness. Doing a photo shoot does not always require a practical reason or even a need. There does not have to be a special occasion to sit for a photographer.

I just love getting people in front of my camera. To provoke reactions of joy and surprise and wonder can be very fulfilling. I love helping to express the emotions and aspirations of human beings. A little coaxing can bring out something wondrous and poignant. I love capturing a brief moment in someone’s life, like a still-frame taken from a motion picture in which they are the protagonist of their own story.

I am a storyteller. I am a problem-solver. I am a connoisseur of beautiful light. I am a photographer…

I’ve photographed hundreds of women in particular. Many have been professional models, who inspire awe with the way they use their facial expressions and bodily motion to strike poses and create moods. I’ve also photographed hundreds of everyday women and girls next door who are housewives, soccer moms, entrepreneurs, and business owners struggling to overcome insecurities about their bodies and their sensuality.

Beautiful smiling girlWhy do they pose for me? If they must have a reason, other than it just being fun as hell, here are a few I’ve heard…

To celebrate her sexiness and share it with her partner while he (or she) is serving overseas in the military or just craving intimacy closer to home…

To create a truly one-in-a-million gift for that impossible-to-buy-for someone…

To pursue a goal of seeing how far they can take their efforts in acting or modeling…

To enjoy the feeling of strutting into a room and doing something exciting and, perhaps, a little scary. Her audacity is rewarded with keepsake photos that forever capture how she looked while happy with herself and her body…

To commemorate a milestone in life and prove to herself that she’s “still got it”, whatever “it” means to her…

To experience the transformative power of beautiful lighting, a makeup artist and the adrenaline rush of tapping into a side of herself that is normally hidden…

Sometimes I get to share my portrait work with you. Sometimes it is intensely private, done discreetly, intended for the eyes of one special someone only. I’m grateful whenever the people I shoot with agree to let me share their images on this website or my social channels.

Women come in all different shapes and sizes. Differences deserve celebrating. Each individual brings with her a unique perspective on what is sexy and beautiful. Whatever that is, my aim is to coach her to look and feel at her best.

I once had a friend remark, “You don’t want to photograph me: I’m not one of these skinny models you shoot with!”

I reminded her that she is one of the most beautiful and attractive people I know. People seek her out to become friends on Facebook because of her warmth and humor and her relentless self-acceptance. Trust me, no one is perfect. I’ve seen the stretch marks, the blemishes, the scars and the flab, even from those who seem flawless. I capture the fantasy, the illusion. Photoshop, clothing choice and delicate lighting can do wonders to minimize whatever someone feels self-conscious about. I love asking someone what her favorite features are. A dazzling smile or a wit that shows in the eyes are just as alluring as symmetrical alignment of the cheekbones or whatever. Some people are gifted with genetics or work damn hard to attain a look they feel good about, but regardless of how we look on the outside, the real beauty lies in the human spirit.

The greatest compliment someone can pay me is to say, “I can’t believe that’s really ME in the pictures!” The second best compliment is when they say, “I was nervous about doing the photo shoot, but it was actually so much fun I didn’t want it to end!”

There’s a subtle art to connecting with someone who feels vulnerable in front of an intimidating camera, engaging in conversation and letting her know she’s made a new friend who only wants to bring out the best in her. It is a rare honor and privilege to meet someone who “gets me” about this photography stuff and shares my craving to create something mega-cool and worthy of our time. I find it deeply enriching to capture people in my art. I enjoy bringing it to my own work and while experiencing the photography of others.

To everyone I’ve photographed across the years, thank you for sharing your time and your likeness with me. Thanks for allowing me to tell your story. It is a gift I cherish, and I hope that as the years continue to pass, our collaborations grow more and more fond in your heart and memories.