How did you find Model Insider and what do you like best about it?
If I remember correctly I noticed mention of MI in other forums and Facebook. While I wish the site generated more traffic, I find the contests interesting and the site easier to use than other model-oriented sites.
What gear do you use?
Other than my first point-and-shoot hiking camera I went the Canon route at the suggestion of my mentor. Starting with a 20D it progressed to a Mark II 1ds and then a Mark III 1ds. Along the way I realized that glass is even more important than pixels and so I now have only “L” glass in my kit. My strobe equipment is Alien Bees - once again, the suggestion of my mentor. I feel A/B’s are the best “bang for buck” out there.
What is your usual genre? Favorite genre?
Beauty and Glamour are my usual genres. My favorite genre is a bit of a niche: beauty nudes. And while I’m an equal opportunity shooter, I prefer to work with models that aren’t inhibited about working with limited wardrobe. I also don’t take on projects that don’t interest me.
How do you find models to work with?
Many contact me through either model-oriented websites or my own website. I’ve learned that there is a considerable amount of networking amongst models – especially the professional ones. They communicate with each other, checking references and getting suggestions for photographers to work with. Also, having my photos in a model’s portfolio generates interest. I also search for new profiles on modeling websites and check travel notices.
Do you provide styling and makeup? Do you work with a preferred MUA?
I’m spoiled – I prefer to work with MUA and hair being done by a professional. I have found that it makes a big difference in the post-processing and the end results. With someone able to be creative with these elements you can achieve much more than just an outfit change during a session. I have been blessed to have the talents of Kristine Frank helping me. By including the MUA and hair skills into the wardrobe and styling choices I achieve a much better result than if I relied on my own limited judgment.
For my own portfolio work a MUA is a given. If I’m responding to a TFP request I usually insist that the model either find or fund the MUA.
Where do you see yourself going in the next year, artistically and business wise?
I’m always looking for improvement. I continually spend time and money to invest in education. To try and make a (small) living derived from photography is an unknown.
Do you shoot both in studio and on location, and do you have a preference?
I shoot both indoors and studio. While I like natural light, Arizona affords small windows where it’s not too hot or too cold, or sunlight that’s too harsh. And given I shoot a lot of nude work, locations within a short drive are limited. So I would have to say my preference is studio.
Do you have your own studio? If not, do you find this a limitation?
I have a home studio. But I’m limited by the size and what I can shoot in there. But I still prefer that to trying to rent a studio.
Do you travel?
Yes, for the occasional location shoot. But I’ve also traveled numerous times for education.
Anything else you'd like to tell the Model Insiders about yourself?
First and primary, I realize I didn’t get here on my own. My thanks to Nick Trapani who got me started. Also, the Supershoots organization has provided some fantastic training and shooting opportunities as well as allowing me to forge some great friendships.