“It was twenty years ago today Sgt. Pepper taught the band to play….”
Twenty years. That seems like a long time, doesn’t it? I guess it is. Can you think of what your life was like twenty years ago? What your hair was like?? What your waistline was like??? (Okay, maybe we should avoid that last one.)
I don’t know about you, but I remember what I was doing twenty years ago today. August 19, 1995, was a Saturday, and I was up in Woodstock, New York, attending a workshop on fine art nude photography. It was something I had never done before.
The previous year, I had received an MBA in Finance from NYU’s Stern School of Business. I had gone to school part time for four years, including the summers, to get my degree, while still working my day job full time. It was not easy, but I did it because I felt like I needed to do it to improve my career possibilities. (I was wrong, because it didn’t help.)
After four years of doing what I felt I needed to do, it was now time for me to do what I wanted to do – and that was getting back to my photography. So, when I went to the photo expo at the Javits Center in Manhattan in the fall of 1994 and found out about the Center for Photography at Woodstock’s weekend summer workshops, I thought it might be a good idea to try some.
The first one, of course, was something that I couldn’t imagine doing on my own: nudes. I had thought that photographing nudes would end with that weekend, but I met another photographer who introduced me to other photographers and instructors, and that started the ball started rolling.
It has now been rolling for 20 years, and it continues to roll.
In the beginning, most (or all) of the nudes that I photographed each year were done at workshops in places like Woodstock, New Mexico, California, Italy, France and even New Jersey. Later, the workshops became less important as I began to photograph models on my own and with friends, most importantly my good friend Dave Levingston from Ohio.
In the last few years, I’ve followed Dave L’s idea of taking models on the road with me for some photo expeditions to Canada and Iceland, which have accounted for the bulk of those year’s photos.
This year, though, I haven’t done much art nude photography. My recent trip to Ireland was my big trip for the year, and I’ve been making an effort to save some money, too. In fact, I’ve shot just three rolls of art nudes this year – a total of 30 photos. Still, 20 years is a landmark of sorts, and I am planning to do some special photography on this occasion, which I will hopefully write about in a future post.
They’ve been going in and out of style But they’re guaranteed to raise a smile…….”
As I have done for the past five years on the occasion of my anniversary, here’s a survey of my art nude photography, with one photo for each calendar year that I’ve been doing it.
It’s really up to other people to decide if my photographs have been going in and out of style, but I do hope that at the very least they will bring to you a smile. 🙂