Thursday, June 22, 2006


I’m currently (sort of) making a living doing something that can be interpreted as risky. I very, very rarely go to shoots with an escort, and a lot of the people I shoot with I’ve met that same day.

However, in the eight or so months that I’ve been modeling, I’ve never had a negative experience. This leads me to believe that I’ll be okay in the future, provided that I keep my wits about me.

Since I’m interested in expanding into slightly more sexual and light fetish photography, I thought it was a good idea to draw up a list of things I won’t do (penetration, pain, explicit spread shots), and a couple of common-sense things (ask permission before touching me to help rearrange an outfit, business relationships should remain as such, etc).

I sent this list to a photographer I was interested in working with after we had exchanged several emails. This was primarily tasteful bondage photography. He wrote back saying that while he agreed and followed everything in my list, he interpreted it as “hostile,” and assumed that I was in a bad place, and would prefer not to work with me.

That’s certainly a downer. I asked a friend who’s a writer for advice, and he helped me add some details that make the list not so abrupt, but I’m still pondering something. Hopefully, something like this won't happen again in the future.

How does one draw the line between being safe, and being friendly and easy to work with? How can I look out for myself, and not become paranoid, or worry about being exploited?

These questions are hardly exclusive to what I’m doing at the moment. As young women, it’s easy to feel vulnerable. It’s not just that society tells us that we are- it’s that we know people who it’s happened to before. We all know someone who’s been taken advantage of, who’s had something slipped into her drink- or, maybe, we are her.

How to deal with this is on my mind, but I know that I can’t let fear stop me from doing things that I enjoy doing, and have every right to do.

Photography by Mike, taken in June, 2006.


Anonymous said...

nice shoot great light
wonderful tits

12:57 PM  
Boredguy said...

I think your comments sound pretty fair to me. The photographer who viewed them as negative has the problem not you.

Your open manner comes through in your poses - in life doing what feels right, is usually the right thing to do.

1:19 PM  
Anonymous said...

I think this is the a huge flaw with email "communication". A lot of the time the meaning behind an email will be loss. It's easy to get the wrong idea or meaning behind what someone is saying or attempting to get across when the only mode of communication is email.

I prefer face to face or at least a voice contact when something needs to be expressed and understood by to parties.

I do think that, from other post here, that you can be a little abrupt.

"Like I've said, I've blogged about this before..."

Saying this in this fashion on a blog that you posted and someone is responding to is not necessarily wrong or mean but comes across in a negative way.


2:05 PM  
Gary M Photo said...

Perhaps if the information were on a webpage along with other policies (travel costs, scheduling, preferred delivery method for images, etc) you could send every photographer to that page as a matter of course, it might not seem like the comments are directed personally at any particular individual.

In the roughly seven months since we shot, you are the only model who asked for a "sit down" before the actual shoot. I was happy to do it, and it's certainly within reason, but it was a bit out of the ordinary, simply because most people don't want to take the time. It's hard enough getting a model to show up for a shoot ONCE, let alone hoping she'll make it to a meeting THEN a shoot at another time.

The higher up the ladder you work, the more likely the photographer is going to want to meet YOU first in person to get a real sense of your personality and your appearance, then they'll be able to tailor the shoot to maximize your strengths. These photographers also want to weed out the flakes, and the ones who look nothing like the photos in their online port, because they don't want to waste their time shooting someone who isn't going to look good in the final product. Also, the big guys frequently work with an assistant and/or MUA, in part to protect themselves from accusations from models, like a male doctor having a nurse present during certain exams with female patients.

That said, a long list of "demands" can be off-putting to legitimate photographers, as it does imply mistrust and a suspicious nature. And the type who would violate your guidelines certainly will not be dissuaded by a list of things you don't want them to do, so maybe you're better off not giving the creeps any ideas.

5:17 PM  
B said...


I look forward to the things that you will be doing. It is way more enjoyable to see a naked thinking person, than a vacuous mannequin.

To add on to what the photographer said, it seems like all potential photographers should view a web-based portfolio of you, which would have the no-go's in the general mix of details about you.

My brother dated a woman who models part time. She has almost the identical limits you have. Her page draws a hard line on those limits and it doesn't seem to have stopped her.

11:21 PM  
BAC said...

Trust your instincts ... they have served you well so far. If something feels wrong, it probably is. If setting boundaries makes you too "negative" for someone, then maybe it's best not to work with them.


12:49 AM  
mnmjr. said...

From what I've read in this blog over the last few months, I have a hard time believing you'd say anything in a derogatory manner to a fellow artist, but I do know how easy it is for words on a page to be misinterpreted for lack of "tone". It's one of the reasons I prefer to actually speak to a prospective model on the phone at least once before a shoot -- it establishes a more personal feel to the work [that i feel is necessary to create good erotic images] and allows both parties to "clear the air" on what is and isn't allowed. I don't consider myself a "creep" by any means, but I have been dissuaded in the past by a poorly-worded or harshly toned expression of a model's limits...I've talked to a lot of other photographers about this and most of them say the same thing: Why bother with a hostile, paranoid model when there are so many out there who manage to conduct themselves without projecting an aura of fear? I'm not saying your email was either of those things, but it's definitely easy for this sort of communication to be misunderstood.

8:46 PM  
Anonymous said...

Did i mention those nice tits

9:07 AM  
Christine Mitra said...

I think it is quite unreasonable for someone to percieve you as hostile ... Your list seemed very fair...

8:31 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home