30 January 2008

On Model Mayhem ... Website problem fixed

The world might just be returning to normal. My web site can again be accessed via an AOL browser. Its been, maybe two weeks and I can tell a significant decrease in my viewership numbers. Still, no explanation of what happened, or if it is prone to happening again.

Anyways, I got to check out a studio for my Las Vegas Art Model's Group to use for photography. It was one built by a videographer who is a member of my group and he's got this thing hooked up. Millions of props, a variety of lighting set ups and sets, and spacious. I can now start the process of arranging MeetUps. I am still waiting word on the studio space for my drawing group. I've signed on with the Contemporary Arts Collective, here in Vegas, and will begin volunteering my services in whatever capacity useful. I've been in talks with the new Art Director there about using the facilities to host my drawing group there in the evenings and weekend afternoons. So we will see how that goes.

I guess my presence on Model Mayhem is starting to pay off. I've been in contact with several models who wish to work with me, but I get several from out of town, mainly California, who plan to visit in a few months. I have not had that same opportunities with models in Vegas just yet, at least not any that seem serious enough to result in anything definite. This is my profile page...I am MM#579934. I am still learning the ins and outs of exposure on this thing. I can't say I am fond of posting announcements that disappear in 4 seconds of posting as other announcements are made which force yours to the bottom of the page and then off the screen. I kid you not... 4 seconds. So many people are posting announcements that you can click off the main screen and then go back and your avatar is already moved on.

So the next way of exposure is posting vane comments on people's pics. Nice pic...Nice port....Stunning...Beautiful...I like this alot!... If you are a model, you're inundated with photogs who comment on wanting to work with you. Basically, you become comment whores along with everyone else. BUT, I think once you have established a presence, things start to roll for you. You get seen more often with less effort. People are requesting to be added to your friends list and your comments fill up with the same mundane "nice port" crap. Its never really any type of critique you can use, but you still live for it. Just the attention is what you crave. But then you sometimes meet some interesting people and exchange in pleasant dialog. You make future plans to meet up at some point and schedule a shoot. I guess that makes it worth while.

23 January 2008

My Friends...This is Trixie

I hope everyone has found time to get around to Chris' Univers d'Artiste to wish him well. As promised, I said I'd post some new material. Its been a while since I've gotten to do new work. I think I introduced Natalie sometime last October or late September. I don't plan to let a span of time like that traverse the continuum of space again without me getting somebody naked. Granted, a contracted project worked me for 12-14 hour days for 3 months in that span, but that's still no excuse. In fact, I am very appreciative of having the job. It payed well and afforded me the ability to jump in into my Canon 40D, which I now have the benefit to enjoy. But still, art Nudes is like Jello, there's always room for that.

So that being said, I introduce Trixie. I, initially, had no intention of posting the work I was able to do with her for out first time. We planned some preliminary shots just to get started and then maybe do some real work later on afterwards, sometime the next week. Well, THREE hours later, I was taking home some pretty good material that I liked. I immediately saw that I could use most everything we did. I tried to tell her to stop posing toward the end, but she'd ball up into something cute and I'd have to fire off the shutter a few times. I then attempted to put the camera away and in the course of conversation I would see another angle of her...back out comes the camera again. The last 45 minutes must have been me putting away the camera and bringing it back out because I would see something new I liked. It was only her driving natural force of hunger that finally abated another hour of shooting. I was trying to exercise better control and not attempt to get everything I liked from her at once. That would have been rude.

We first talked about doing the shoot maybe mid-December and I conducted my first two interviews with her. We hit it off well and agreed to shoot, but thought it would be best to wait til after the holidays settled. I could tell right off that she was a person of great character and ideal for my to shoot on an ongoing basis. Spirit and a willingness to give are the two traits I can ascribe to her that I most admire. This girl is willing to work and has a sincere interest in becoming part of an artistic process. Its my hope that she, and maybe a few others, can help me develop my trade. Models like her, give me the opportunity to experiment and try new things. Her contributions just over this single shoot were invaluable. I was also thankful to her husband, for being so understanding and willing to "lend" me his pride and joy to create something I can now share with you all. I will be posting several of her images up on the blog. You can also see some on my website, TLNeasley.com, as well as on my profile on deviantART, which will be uploaded maybe tomorrow. Some will be the same, some will be different. I think I have 37 on my website but out of about 350 shots, I have edited it down to about 160. So they will be popping up all over for a spell. Thats not counting the set from our next shoot planned soon. I have also been contacted by a few other models who have expressed a desire to work with me, so we'll see how that goes as well. By the way, AOL still hasn't fixed the thing that causes my website to re-route to something else, so use Internet Explorer or Firefox to access my site.

On another note: There must be a huge interest in mail modling konserns, and errekshuns is almost always the main subject. I intentionally misspelled that so as to not draw attention from search bots. This has resulted from my 13 November 2007 posting on the discussion. I got enough requests on the matter that I responded to help mailartmodelz get over that concern. Good gracious, I really don't want to answer any more questions about that and I am almost certain 30 percent (or more) of my blog hits come from searches that regard the subject matter. My blog is on top of those search results. I guess I can't be mad at anything driving traffic to my blog, but I am pretty sure not all these mail modling konserns have to do with someone who is a modle worried about what to do if he gets an errekshun. What do you think?

22 January 2008

Get Well Chris!!!!!!!!!!!

I'll be posting new pics later this week. I still have to finish some last minute edits and title them! But right now I wanted wish my friend, Chris St. James a speedy recovery. As if you didn't know, Chris is the man behind the super-bad nude art blog "Univers d'Artistes". Chris supports the work of photographic artists who specialize in artistic expressions of the nude. He does this by featuring art from the most famous and highly acclaimed photogs as well as the unheard of, like myself. In addition, you can find valuable resource material on his blog as he keeps it updated and adds to it constantly.

So ya'll show your support and wish him a quick and complete recovery. Show some love, dammit!

13 January 2008

AOL is the problem... not ifp3.com

Apparently, my website host is not the problem. Its the AOL browser. You can view my site on Internet Explorer or Firefox, but for the moment, not AOL. For whatever reason, its re-routing all ifp3.com content and everyone's webpages to the JBoss site. I am still trying to find out what the deal is, so in the meantime, keep that in mind and sorry for any inconvenience this might pose.

12 January 2008

Website down, plus Matter and Nimoy

It would appear that my website host, ifp3.com is down at the moment. When you click on my site, all you get is a Welcome to JBoss page. Well, rest assure that I have not gone into a new line of business. I checked my bank account and my bill is paid up with ifp3.com, so that's not it either. From the looks of things, everyone who uses this online webhost has the same page pop up. So just give them a little time, I am sure they will sort out this mess, refund me for the downtime, and all will be back to normal!

But since we are both here, I may as well use the time to post a few things. Jordan Matter ... I came across his website when a nudist site posted my link on a page of nude resources. Browsing the links, I ended up finding New York photographer on a link promoting topless equality for women. I had no idea that it has been legal for women in NY to be topless! I am a big fan of the artistic nude. Number 2 to that is the topless woman. Spending time in Germany,France and Spain has cultivated that notion. After a discussion with a woman in France, back in 1989 or so, I became enlightened which led to my distaste for bras. I know some women feel they need them, and maybe rightly so, but as a personal preference, I hate bras. I do not care what anyone says, a man did not invent the bra, unless he was kidnapped, locked into a basement, and made to do so under force.

I digress... Jordan Matter has made a niche out of photographing topless, (or top free) women in public. He's got one image of a young topless girl who appears to be showing a cop a brochure or getting directions on a map. I shake my head in disbelief just talking about it. (Dave R. you never told me about this). Its been my desire to do public nudes since I started on this journey, but I have always been fearful for the welfare of my model. I don't know the rules to this here in Vegas, other than the fact that if you get caught, you go to jail. But even if you don't get caught at the time, and you post pics of yourself doing public nudes, an illegal act, do they still come after you? I can always say I photoshopped the model into a public scene but really...who needs the drama.

On another note, I picked up a copy of Carrie Leigh's Nude, at my local book stand over the holidays. It's still back with the porn mags, behind the counter and laid flat so you can't even see the cover. Its available upon request. Anyway, I was glad my bud Dave Rudin got to make the first issue and I could see that the magazine had quality material in editorial and interview content. As before this second issue was no exception. I was particularly intrigued by the Leonard Nimoy interview. Granted, I have been a fan of Spock and Star Trek for years. But this was really the first time I got to see Leonard Nimoy and not visualize him with pointed ears. I had no idea that the man has been a photographer since before he was an actor. I was one of the ignorant who figured he picked up a camera after his acting days are over and pointed it at a naked girl. The man built his own first enlarger as a kid out of an old metal lunchbox and a spare camera! He goes on to describe his love for the print since before, during, and now even late into his acting career. I can't say "after" his acting career, because I am pretty sure a new Star Trek is coming out and he's in it. Well, I have seen his work before and can relate to his efforts to take on challenging and even non-popular subjects like the project he did on overweight women, The Full Body Project, which is in the magazine. I had seen these images before while browsing a library. Well, that's enough for today, me thinks, especially since that's two major posts, two days in a row. Don't wanna spoil y'all.

11 January 2008

Next Evolution of Photography

NPR (National Public Radio), had an interesting piece today that consisted of an interview by noted National Geographic photographer, Sam Abell. You can listen to a mp3 version of this 35 minute interview by clicking => HERE. RealPlayer or MediaPlayer will suffice. Mr. Abell is in Nevada to be the keynote speaker at Ceasars Palace for the "An Evening with CLASS! , 2008", in support of a fundraiser for a high school organization. In the KNPR interview, he talks about many subjects of interest. In an answer to a listener's question regarding post-processing software, he reveals that he is strictly a film photographer and does not use digital software to alter any of his photos other than to create digital reproductions of them. He has a deliberate philosophy regarding his craft, but a rather dismal prospect on the future of photography and photographers. It would seem he believes this may be a dying profession, going the way of the cassette tape, or at least that's my opinion of his remarks.

I too have began to wonder about the business of photography as we know it. Camera technologies has been in a perpetual evolutionary state since the camera obscura and the daguerreotype. The advent of multiple exposure possibilities from emulsion coated a paper or plastic rolled substrate (a roll of film) instead of a single "one shot at a time" plate was seen as an advancement. Instant film by Polaroid was seen an advancement, just as the digital censor was viewed as an advancement. Photo purists have already began to lament the onslaught of the digital age, but Abell comments that the art and craft of the photography is dying much faster than what we might imagine. He discusses the advent of videography as a new tool that is quickly gaining ground as the preferred method of still capture. Abell recounts how it once took him 14 months to "get the shot" on a particular shoot for which he was charged. This sort of dedication would be absurd today. No longer is there a need to wait for the right moment. Video of the same scene allows the ability to become more selective with image capture.

I recall reading the Helmut Newton autobiography where he discusses taking maybe 10 images for an entire shoot. It was either in that book or the HBO documentary "Helmut by June". Now photogs will use a digital SLR with a huge CF card from which they can select the best image from amongst a choice of hundreds or even thousands. It would appear that the new age of photographers, or rather videographers will not even need to do that. The ability to record video footage and then select the choice still image reduces the propensity to pull a muscle in your trigger finger from releasing a shutter a million times for every shoot. Is this really the future of photography? How much time do we have left before the art of fact SLR becomes an artifact SLR? Photojounalists will feel the impact much more than the photo artist, but is it simply a matter of time?
The need for the print will still persist for long times to come. People still want to hang a picture on the wall. The question remains with regard to how the image capture will produce it. Since photography is constantly evolving, can videography be a welcomed advancement? It is the print that is most important, which is what photogs strive to produce. We want to show our interpretation of the perfectly exposed print. That's why we do it. We want as many people as possible to see our prints. Therefore can it be said that serving the needs of the print outweighs the needs of the photographer? I know what I would argue, but then again, my bias may disallow a more objective perspective.

03 January 2008

A Good Start, I think

This is a favorite quote of mine from a character out of a book I read a while back, but it has always stuck with me. The central character, Milkman (that's what he's called by, stemming from the fact that as a child it was well known that he was breast fed way longer than what might be deemed normal), and some of his friends are being lectured by the Reverend Cooper, set back in the early 1900's or maybe late 1800's. I cannot recall which. Its been a while since I've read the book, but its a good motivational speech to start out a year. Listen closely...

"You see?...See? See what a man can do? Never mind you can't tell one letter from another, never mind you born a slave, never mind you lose your name, never mind your daddy dead, never mind nothing."

"Here... this here is what a man can do if he puts his mind to it and his back in it. Stop sniveling! Stop picking around the edges of this world. Take advantage, and if you can't take advantage, take disadvantage! We live here. On this planet, this nation, in this country right here. Nobody starving in my home; nobody crying in my home, and if I got a home, you got one too! Grab it! Grab this land! Take it, hold it, my brothers, make it, my brothers, shake it, squeeze it, turn it, twist it, beat it, kick it, kiss it, whip it, stomp it, dig it, plow it, seed it, reap it, rent it, buy it, sell it, own it, build it, multiply it, and pass it on -- can you hear me? Pass it on!"

--Reverend Cooper talking to Milkman and some friends in Toni Morrison's book,"Song of Solomon"

01 January 2008

2008 - Lets Do it Again!

I hope everyone got to enjoy the holidays and spend time with love ones. Its 2008 and I am looking forward to the new year. No, I don't do resolutions. My aim is to just keep moving forward. I don't think you need to wait til January 1st to make up your mind or set goals to do something meaningful in your life. Its should be an ongoing process. I want to get better at my photography and present better content on my blog, but like I said, these are ongoing processes that build upon the previous year.

It wasn't easy staying away from all of you. I had to resist the urge to get back to writing despite saying I'd continue after the holidays. I made a list of things I wanted to write about, but I think I will ease into them, instead of blasting you with it all at once. So I will first start out my blog entry of the year with congrats to my bud, Dave Rudin, author of Figures of Grace for being selected by The 2007 Fluffytek Photographic Nude Blog Awards, as the Best Overall Nude Blog of 2007. For that he received a "Golden Fluffies" award. There are many many Nude Art blogs on the web right now and I can tell you that the competition was stiff. Dave taking tops is no small feat.

And also, if you are going to have a blog for nude art, that means somebody's gotta get naked. Congratulations goes to Iris Dassault for best Nude Model Blogger for 2007. I am pretty sure this was probably not as close of a decision as the Nude Art Blogs. It was more than likely a landslide. There are lots of pretty models from which you can choose to make fine art, but Iris takes her talents to another level as a writer with invaluable and relevant content both useful and entertaining to the art photography lovers. Models and Photogs alike can benefit from her expertise which she offers freely to her readers. Now she has added to her repertoire of writing talents, contributors Unbearable Lightness and Tarachin. I don't know about the rest of you but I can't wait to see what the new year brings from the minds of those three.

I am not sure as to the eligibilities or the award selection process, but I know two other bloggers of note that were not mentioned, whom I believe have done the most for the promotion of art nudes, photographers, and models have to be Chris St. James and Michael Barnes. (I know that was a run-on sentence, but I am not being graded here!) Chris St. James handles Univers d' Artistes, which is content laden like a chocolate chip cookie...just chock full of goodness. Michael Barnes is the chief architect behind Art Nudes Blog. You CANNOT call yourself a nude art lover and NOT know Michael Barnes and his blog, despite the efforts of the jackass who's complaint resulted in a content warning advisory on his site. Both of these gentlemen are the Don Kings of Nude Art ... (but in a good way!) So if you don't know, you better ask somebody.

Now everyone join me in extending congratulations to these individuals for their accomplishments and contributions by visiting their sites and becoming regular supporters, subscribers, and readers of their work. They have put an awful lot of time, energy and dedication to serve us and we owe them no less. [Applaud] ... [Applaud] ... [Applaud]