the Male Nude

My little brother is quite hench. But I can forgive him because it makes him a brilliant subject for art nude, and furthermore he was willing to shave his whole body, get the coach with me to Bedford, spend the whole day doused in oil, and get back only just in time for the gym.

Were it not for having a bodybuilder for a brother I probably wouldn’t have thought to attempt the male artistic nude for ages. As it is, these are my first very serious studio nudes. So thank you Gabriel for providing me with something unusual which I might not have otherwise tried.

Anyway, here he is, the great hulking oaf of 17. This photo is entitled ‘Impact’, but any better suggestions would be appreciated…


This second shot is a tribute to Gregory Brown‘s celebrated photo of me on a chair. My lighting isn’t as precise as his, but I like the result. I’ve called this one ‘Arrowhead’ because straight lines and the triangles are all about pointing and a sense of upwards motion. As with the Gregory Brown shot of me, this one took many attempts to get the pose just right, with many details to remember and more bodily strain and discomfort than you can detect from the photo.


Third, we have one which is an echo of this shot I took of Gabriel a year ago on a beach in France, called Pebble on the Beach. But this time because his hair blended in with the chair, he was able to hang his head down and show the whole of his back. This one is called ‘Pedestal’, and it’s all about abstracting the human form. The angle simplifies the body so much, but then again the shape would be even simpler with a non-muscly model. The internal structure of this chunk of body makes it interesting enough to be isolated.


And lastly another funny abstract one, for which I had to spend a bit of time editing out some bum fluff. Other things that have been involved in the post-processing for this shoot have included chopping off genitals (I said it was usually better to do these things in real life to save having to do it in photoshop for every single shot), and editing out several messy tattoos that his friend had given him a few days before as a joke, including among other things a penis, a love heart, and an unfortunate attempt at a Star of David which came out as a rather different religious symbol when the artist got the number of sides wrong.


And this is also all thanks to Maximus for letting me use his excellent studio. I used a grey paper backdrop throughout the shoot, shining various lights onto it to create variation in the background, which was fun. I’ve never had so many different flashlights, grids and reflectors too choose from and keep track of, and I think I ended up using pretty much every light in the studio at some point or other.

About Rebecca Tun

According to me, I like lists. View all posts by Rebecca Tun

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