Saturday, 5 June 2010

Glamour Pix: Guys VS. Gals

Since I stumbled across Dita Von Teese, and now am planning for photo shoots with various photographers, I all of a sudden find myself talking to them and guys in general about what turns them on. See, the photographers have certain ideas in mind, my muscles are unusual and inspiring for them, and of course they are trying to figure out how far I would go. Actually: I am trying to figure out how far I would go!

There are rather glamorous pictures which I quite like and there are other, very similar ones which I don’t. I could imagine myself shooting something similar in case one, but not in case two. What makes them so different? I decided to think this through scientifically, and I now believe that I figured it out.

I for instance got two photo ideas explained by the guys:
  • Faceless Nude – a naked woman with a gas mask on
  • Feline – woman in lingerie licking milk from a cat bowl

Hmm...?! The only thing that instantly pops into my mind is a thousand ‘WHY?’s
Why the mask? Alarm while having sex? Fetish thing? Lost her clothes because couldn’t see properly through that thing? Why the cat milk? Isn’t she having a cup? Eating from floor is disgusting and diminishing...

If I would put myself in the middle of a room, naked with a gas mask on, I would not expect to be taken seriously, or not to be raped for that matter.

Of course I get the appeal it may have to a guy. It has clear signals: Boobs and arse right on a tray ready to go, while kitty says: See, I am there already, may scratch a bit but won’t fight, take me now!

I always thought that under an evolutionary point of view the guys would like the hunt, but I may have misinterpreted of what hunting actually entails. Hunting for them is all about the kill at the end. It is about tuning in on a signal: the stag, the pattern of the fur, the boob, the bum; tuned in like a missile with a motion lock. Distraction would be disruptive, and when the kill can be achieved without the hunt, even better. By all means: It is a fair way of seeing things! Whatever turns you on boys!

It’s just that this is not working for me, and from what I heard when talking with my girlfriends: it is not for them either. So if I would commit to a glamour shoot I would like to have photos taken which would turn ME on, and not in a lesbian way. Sorry to blow another one of your dreams. Guys: ... it’s rarely the male form that does it for us ladies... Again, it is just not about signals. Don’t get me wrong, I like to see some eye candy once in a while, nice shoulders, ABS... but that is not what gets me going! Actually, it doesn’t even matter what the subjects in a shot are – as long as they work well together. Thus the next bit is about: What does ‘working well together’ mean?

A guy’s ‘Hustler’ is a girl’s ‘Mills & Boon’

Ladies need the story telling! ‘Context’ is the key word here. Context exists in two ways:
  • Context within which a photo is displayed, and
  • Context within the photo itself.

Reverting back to the ‘faceless nude’ and the ‘feline’, one could argue that in a context less set up these women are not in control, they are obedient and subject to potential abuse. Putting them into the context of a fetish photo book or a themed exhibition it makes sense. Context avoids misunderstanding.

Although I am not opposed to any kind of fetish, this is not what I am interested in. What sets my mind into gear is context within the photo:

The story telling!

A well chosen context can put subjects into charge, and the strength of a subject radiates as strength of the image, creating a strong emotion in the onlooker.

Let me elaborate:

Step one: Imagine a naked woman on a meadow.
Instant questions again: Why is she there, and where are her clothes?

Step two: Put a nice shrub on one side of her, in which her clothes are hanging and on the other side you put a lake.
Ah, of course, she is taking an early morning bath. Hmm, I already can feel the first of the sun rays tickling through the last of the mist, and the soft grass under my feet; I can imagine the cold water around the ankles and the little ‘whoops’ moment when it touches the belly button, and then the big, joyful, tingling splash!

Interesting what a bit of context can do, isn’t it? But we are not finished yet!

Step three: Put a bit of greeneries into the foreground as if somebody is watching her through a shrub.

Whoohoo, a bit of voyeurism... Nice! Getting there!

Step four: Now imagine that she knows that she is being watched.
She can feel the eyes as close as touching, her head swings that tiny bit more when the hair is released, she turns a bit more, stretches a bit further, swings the hips a bit more as she walks into the water; she shows this little bit of attitude and she knows... he is there and can’t have it, at least not right now.

And that is the final turn on:
Time delay!

Not being able to have it straight away. The tease! Which brings us back to Dita.

That is total contradiction to what guys need. To a woman, a single picture with the proper framing and a model with the right attitude can tell an entire story... and it will make her happy!

Now I find myself in a situation where I would like to find out what works for both. Scenarios are needed where the signals are strong, but the story nevertheless is being told!

If you can solve this riddle – who knows? I might even go all the way... modelling wise that is!

1 comment:

  1. Rika

    The two scenarios you relate are, I'm afraid, typical of the efforts of 'blokes with cameras'.
    These people may or may not be proficient photographers in a technical sense, but they are constructing a situation that meets their own 'personal' needs, rather than advances the cause of photography.
    The model will be no more a participant than a stage prop.
    If you are happy to play a part in this go ahead but you should be aware that the perversity of their inclinations is, at best, very thinly disguised!
    Glamour photography is a conscious collaboration between the photographer -usually male - and the model - usually female - to produce images that convey a very commercial, almost a commodification, of sexuality.
    By definition the images will be highly derivative of other images in the public eye because they must fit in with the current trends and styles. There is very little creativity in glamour photography.
    Is this really what you want to be involved in? And will it convey ideas of emancipation, choice and health you espouse?
    For example, the fad for cosmetic surgery and breast enhancement, in particular, is almost entirely triggered by glamour photo styles.