Working with a Pregnant Body
All right so we're going to go into working with the pregnant body I've been talking all day about the fact that have all these little videos about babies that I want to show you because we had extra babies today we took up a little extra time so I'm gonna move those two next week tomorrow I gonna move them to tomorrow so don't panic we're gonna finish up with pregnancy and then I do have some work on charity that I do want to share with you and yet I will let you know somebody handed out tissue already so I wanted to give you a strong mess sieged today and so I want you all to be prepared for this my goal is not to bring anyone down it's actually teo to bring you up to be very honest with you but it is an emotional journey so I do want you to be prepared for that andi want clothes today with that little piece on charity every show I've ever done I've clone always close the show show with charity it's important to understand that the foundation of my company is built on a charitable pr...
inciple so we're gonna leave the little heavier message today because then that way tomorrow we'll keep it nice and chipper and happy but to me the entire reason that I'm here for this three days is the message that I will give you after this segment so people all right but before we get there let's talk about working with a pregnant body because we had the experience today of having a pregnant woman come in so the third style that we were talking about where news remember we talked about traditional and we talked about fabric wraps the third would be news now nuits could be a lot of fun um well it's a big fun because you're dealing with a lot of body and obviously proportionally it could get a little interesting so big is definitely the key word now there's a comfort zone for both the client and the photographer there if you don't feel comfortable shooting nudes then don't accept jobs where you're photographing nudes period if a client does not want a photograph of new, they're not going to ask you probably to do it don't it's okay toe ask them if they're interested and that's why we do these three slide shows for our clients we actually have slide shows put to music and we show them but I always tell the client before we show them the slide show what their going see and I always preface it by saying the next live show is our nude series do you have any interest in doing a nude siri's in your pregnancy and if they look at me and say oh absolutely not no way we say you know what then let's not even look at the slide show no reason to do that. There could be two reasons. Number one, they're not interested because their bodies not in the right condition, they feel number two. It could be something that it's an issue personal issue to them, a moral issue, whatever it is, I don't want to have offend anyone or make them watch something that they may consider not appropriate. So if they say if they decline in that state now, if they're on the fence, if I could say there, if I could see that like, I don't know my arms are kind of heavy, I'm not really. Then I could say, you know what? I give you my word, you're gonna love what I do or you're not going to see it. I will never let you see something that I don't think is absolutely beautiful and trust me, I've been looking at images for twenty five years. You're going to be beautiful. So if I'm telling you you would look beautiful is a nude, I give you my word, we'll take care of you if you're not comfortable that's fine, too, and I let them make the decision at that point as well. Um, not everybody is gonna want a picture like this it's something that, you know, when somebody requested finding placement to put the body haven't you gotta have somewhere to go in a situation like this we were just playing around doing some artistic news she's not going to make a seven inch port of portrait of that I promise you um that doesn't mean I haven't done that before the most frightening picture I've ever done in my entire life was a song sixty inch three quarter nude pregnancy with her arms up this way so three quarters here in here I just would like you to know that at sixty inches that was five times life size so it was actually terrifying when we took it out of you can imagine I still have nightmares about that she was putting it in a private dressing room in her home I just wonder what that child must feel like every time she has to walk into that but it's something that it is possible I mean as an artistic nude there's nothing wrong with it I'm not I'm not saying that it's wrong it's just that um standard portrait rule just so you know this is kind of a little tip out there in a wall portrait portrait should uh the images the subject's face should be no bigger than the face of a clock or I say your hand so that goes for everything right no bigger than the basil glock for anything bigger than that is very frightening so keep that in mind um an image like this when we're working with news, the truth is I didn't just lay her on the floor and put a light on her and say, um, you know, and I'm gonna stand up and walk for this one, but I didn't just put her down, lay on the floor and say, you know, clique got the shot I'm not an over shooter ever I tell people all the time not to be an overshoot er think about what you're doing do not push that shutter unless you really mean it. You saw me do that today you saw me literally watching a baby's expression going it's coming it's coming it's coming and bam! Now that shot you will never see me do this ever that comes from film days but with pregnancy it's a little different because with this you know I laid her body out and let her and then I literally go bam bam bam bam! Skip that skip that skip that bam! Back on, I will circle a body until I find the right light light because everybody is different and everybody handles their weight differently. Some women are way out here's some women carry this way someone get very chesty someone get very heavy in the arms and so every single price pregnancy is a unique session now angles are very important and I'm gonna bring myself up so I can see the angles are very important because this is how we can slim the subject's body depending on who she is now in this case, this woman here came in its a very popular shot we shoot this all the time she came in, she had perfect everything perfect arms, perfect body perfect size, her proportions were perfect, so it was just a matter of those butterfly fingers we kind of shows you today the very light soft fingers we laid her. She is just laying flat on the floor with a few pillows and she has sheets and sheets and fabric wrapped all over her. So in a case like this it's it's, super easy, her care and could and comfort is, of course, of most importance. It's easy to get a pregnant woman down, not us he's necessarily to get them all up so don't just say laid out because it's not a scene because you think if you haven't done it before and when they're getting up, it is very hard. When you're pregnant, your body literally goes numb, your legs go out on you, you lose feeling in your legs very quickly, so getting down sometimes is easy and sometimes getting up can be very hard to be courteous make sure you ask them are you okay? Can I help you? Let me let me help you up. Just don't even give them choices because women tend to be very strong and dominant, and sometimes you just need to say hey, look, it's okay to be helped a cz? Well, so with her was easy. We just laid her down, wrapped her up in this session was good to go. This is a little different. This woman actually came in for a consultation, and she was carrying quite a bit of weight. She was having some problem with her sugar levels during her pregnancy and was carrying a probably closer tio two hundred and eighty pounds, and that was nowhere near her normal weight. So she came in for the session and her husband, by the way, I have to say it was the most adoring person he's, one of those rare husbands that just absolutely doted on her and loved her so much, and I was so breathtaking. But we're in a consultation, and she is telling me she didn't even want to be there. They had been to the hospital at a class at one of the note llamas classes that scene my work in the hospital, and he really wanted her to do a pregnant. He thought she was the most beautiful thing in the world and as did I, but she did not feel that way she felt she was many, many pounds over her normal weight so she couldn't even see herself in herself so as we sat through the consultation and at this point I was doing the consultation we sat through the consultation and discuss clothing options and we talked about different fabrics and things and I knew there was a weight issue we talked about dark being the best choice I didn't talk about that with her but in my head I was making decisions on what I would do um but he gave her some options for clothing I said you could bring a dark top but I had even asked her do you want to expose your tummy or do you want to show no tummy and she said, oh no tell me no exposure nothing I'll just keep my shirt on so now I'm in my head good okay we're bringing black clothing on a black background we're not gonna have a tummy I mean there's not gonna be there but she also was carrying not of round she's very square very heavy and so I had my concerns but I asked her to please bring several tops and we would try different things and I promised her I gave her my word that she was going to look beautiful well the day shows up for her session she walks in with one long sleeve black shirt that you know, with, like a tunic type shirt for pregnancy and black pants, that's also brought, she said, this is all I am doing, this is all I want to do, and I said, okay, no problem and of course in my head and doing what we're all doing, which is ok, she's gonna look better on black, you don't want to, you want to eliminate the extra weight because those were my options put around black and fader to dark. Well, there goes the tummy, put her on anything light, and all we're going to do is accentuate her weight, and so I was really little not stressed, but, you know, and certainly the client would know, but in my head, I'm one how am I going to make this work? So of course, I put her black on black, and I'm trying to get kicker lights and accent lights, and then I take her to a lighter back on. As soon as I did that, I knew she wasn't gonna like it because she looked larger, that I knew she would want teo and so I didn't honestly probably thirteen maybe fourteen images and I stopped and I turned her and I said you know it's to be very honest with you uh I'm struggling here a little bit because of the dark clothing on the dark background I'm very concerned I know what your concerns are I want to make sure you're happy but I'm not getting what I really want I'm not able to showcase that you're pregnant and that you're really in this really special time in your life and I know your husband is dying to get something really magical I said would you consider a fabric wrapped wrap and she looked at me and she said no absolutely not and I said okay I said I understand but I want you to listen to me I said first of all do you trust me? And she looked at me and kind of startled and I and she said what I said do you trust I said you've chosen my studio you've chosen to work with me there's a reason that you're here but do you trust me and she looked at me and she said, well, what does that mean? And I said very honest with you I'm not getting anything that I would want to present to you I'm not getting the images that are going to take your breath away actually believe I could do that and she laughed she said nothing you could get with me is going to take my breath away, she said. You probably could make me throw up, but not take my breath away, and I said, I looked at her and I said, okay, well, then, this is the part where you need to trust me because I know I can and I'll tell you this, if you will trust me and you will allow me to wrap you in fabric, I will take my time and do it right, and I promise you, if I see these finished images before you see them, I will be the only one looking at them, and if I see them and they are not breathtaking, I'd give you my word, you will never see them, you will see the images that I've already created and that's it. And so of course not, I wouldn't say prodding, but it took a little while. And, uh, finally she agreed, and she was super well, so we had first made a bra top, and then the difference between her and the other woman is she's actually in a beanbag. And the reason we use a beanbag with weight is, of course, a beanbag new sort of sink into it, so naturally, when her body hit the being bag, the bag itself kind of enveloped itself around her body now, after that we took large amount of times taking fabric and tool and fluffing it around her body. In fact, you can actually see if you can see from here on her arm her arm actually goes to there it is quite heavy however we took time to take her hair and the weight here in her arm we put fabric over it and we took this is not even this is probably one third of her stomach and we took that fabric and wrapped it up and I use shadow detail to try to sculpt and create. This is not one of those just squeezer in and take the picture. It took me a lot of time to get this to happen her shoulder goes from here to here, but we've actually just eliminated it through fabric. So this is something that I knew I knew consciously that I wasn't going to take a ton of images but that I was working for a single image. Now you might look at that night confined lots of flaws like the thumb here and I mean there's things that you know, this is not america print this is not a print that is going to go and win a prize. However this is one of those experiences, another one that justice sort of ah showstopper in my world because when she came in for this session when she came in for the sales session we finish this up this didn't take us quite a while we finish it up I promised her I'd talk took it several shots a couple um she left and they came in foot cell session remember I had about thirteen images on black and then I had this image here had a version of this two versions of this two different tonalities of this they came in for the slide show we didn't even really have enough images to do a real slideshow put to music we just put music on and let them slowly dissolve in and out the first images on black I could literally feel her cringing going you know like I could just hear these little noises coming out of her and I just you know I was just like wait for it wait for it this image comes up and it was on a slow dissolve it literally comes up and it holds and her husband goes oh my gosh and he tears up and he just starts to cry and she literally turns to him and she goes that's not me and I looked at her said that issue and she said she kept saying did you photoshopped me what did you do? Did you photoshopped me? She kept saying that over and over and she had two years and he had tears and I couldn't believe it I mean emotionally for me it was this big like harada like I knew I hadn't done it because it was a risk I mean when you're pushing somebody and saying to trust you better know what you're doing because if you fail obviously you're really going to hurt somebody so you want to be confident that you could do this but when you take when you get to that point in your career where you could do that working to push a little bit and get what you want and take somebody's breath away it makes it worth it now out of the fourteen images they I saw this is the only one they bought it's also uh they bought it is a large wall portrait now she would have never seen herself this way she could have never imagined that she could be so beautiful and again it's not a stunning as the one I showed you before with the perfect woman with the perfect body with perfect arms but to me it is the more perfect image because it has literally my soul in it and so let's move on because I can't take it anymore uh popular poses that these are just a few getting the tummy shot that's you know tell me with siblings is just much I have there's certain things that in any type of photography we're gonna do we're always going to do siblings are important finding ways teo showcase the new baby with the sibling is always the challenge. It doesn't have to be, like, full on tommy uncomfortable. I mean, you can see this isjust a little peekaboo top. You wouldn't necessarily even know she was pregnant, but it just kind of gives you that. Hey, there's, a new baby coming along? Um, there's also, um, you know, sculpting the body. We talked about using those those kicker lights, the stronger, more narrow light sources so that we can eliminate the weight on the body is also very important. There's all kinds of different poses that are popular. This is again one of those little bolero tops that we bought that was long sleeves. So this is another fun way to just capture, you know, kind of the emotion in the spirit of the whole thing using window light there. Now we have all kinds of sessions that we dio I'm going to show you a little video of just some studio sessions because I want you to look, this is natural light and studio light, and I'll kind of give you a feel for what I would consider a studio session, no. I'm here to tell you life is a joke is what you think it's for the parcels so just a puzzle to me and every time you think you're not but life tends to happen while used to make it past day dreaming causes taking tension went to my room come teo you get so just do at your love love what you do all right so that kind of gives you a little bit of an idea of studio and you could see every image is unique every image had a different background a different color indifferent tonality um every image is personal now when it comes to location work ah little different if you don't have a studio studio you certainly can go out on location this is something that I mean my goal is usually to create three or four unique looks and typically on location it's clothing changes so there's everything from covered uh you know, different poses we like to go downtown into the city and do kind of a nerd urban eclectic look you can find all kinds of spaces where you could have some fun and just you know, let mom be mom this is the second outfit ah, little more business and but again she's still covered uh here's another outfit just playing around having some fun amusing colors and color palettes to capture the attention and then of course the final outfit just very natural having fun. And again, these air ali, I mean, you could see eighty percent of the shots just got a hand on her belly because we're constantly trying to tell people I'm pregnant. This is, you know, there's a baby in there so it's just finding that look, that feels something that's going to make it magical. Now, when you and then of course, we call this the trailer trash look, you know, out in the backyard with the, uh, we love to do like the street scene and the all the, you know, the stop signs in the polls and just kind of make it look a little less a little more rugged, I think it's, the way we like to go now, in order to get the shot, you have to sort of get in there. You saw me today, I literally could go down on my back and up in a thirtieth of a second, and I move really, really fast. You have to make and create those different angles. So I'm going to show you a quick little video to finish this siri's and kind of show you what it, what it takes on location, the first one I'm outside, and you'll see I'll literally lay in mud dirt. Ants doesn't matter tio get that unique look and the second part of this video I'm actually inside the home and you'll see it's natural light and a reflector and I believe a q flash let's take a look okay right there that's beautiful love that okay let's put your hands on your belly to front your hand goes alone now pull it way back so we open up your elbow a little bit right there beautiful okay got it right there eyes here beautiful nose down a little bit more now no smile thank you okay look back no smile nose back towards that light a whole lot even more and nose down there it is great lean right there yeah that was it but I didn't get it on the other that is amazing now let's get that flowy arms back again looking up nose back up that way oh my gosh uh right there now no smile breathing through your mouth beautiful now touch your nose down and close your eyes that is gorgeous. Well one more okay beautify love that with your eyes open but let me find my focus sorry guys right they're beautiful right there and one more right so you can see um we do whatever it takes teo sacrifice to get this shot you're going to get dirty you're gonna get down I mean if you just stand there and take pictures everything is gonna look exactly the same uh also we like to do location in the hospital we like to actually go out it's a personal choice your client has to want it um certainly have to respect their privacy and you have to have a conversation what their comfort zone is I have had clients that want everything photograph they want to see the crowning of the head they want it all not my favorite um certainly not my assistant's favorite if they haven't had kids I can lose assistance very quick but uh but I also have clients who say stay up at the top we just kind of want to have the emotion of the room we don't want to see anything that I couldn't show my grandma and that's cool too so so you have to know very clearly what they want because sometimes in the heat of the moment they'll change their mind and either say never mind I don't want that or go get it you know and you're like are you sure you sure or you just in a lot of pain right now or what do you really want? So so I have that conversation beforehand say you know what? What you feel here you may not feel there if you tell me here you want me to get everything and then at that point you realize you don't want that just tell me and I whatever you tell me at that point I'm going to do that, so make sure that you're coherent enough that you want me to do that you do have to be a silent part of the moment this is they're special moment you are not to speak or, you know, be obtrusive or say or do things move things around? I mean, this is they're having their baby, so in order for you to be a part of that, even if they're a very good client, you feel very close to them. I still think there's a point where you have to give them their time, um, we do lots of sessions, I mean, everything from, you know, showing the emotion and the pain of the session, the process of everything again, some clients it's all the details, I mean, if you're with somebody having a baby for seven to twelve hours, you kind of run out of things to shoot, you know? And so we're looking around, but just the little pieces, the things the hands that cropping, I'm really and truly the emotion is what we're looking for and it's, there is a value on that much time, and later we can talk about pricing and what would this cost? Because if I'm going to a hospital with an unknown she's gonna have the baby sometime I need to know how long that's going to be if it's going to be you know, twelve hour session I need to be prepared for that my family does and they financially need to have compensated me before I left because I'm not going to go down there saying it's a three hundred dollar session and twelve hours later realize this is a thirty, five hundred dollars session because you're not going it's hard to collect money when they look like that it hurt, you know people but obviously going through capturing the moment from whatever and they want you to capture from is important being there for that first cry is just breathtaking it literally takes your breath away so it's a it's an amazing opportunity we also get a chance in life many times to do special sessions. This was an incredible story of a woman who because she became pregnant I mean, the tests that they do for pregnancy found out that she did in fact have breast cancer. Um she decided to carry the baby which everybody recommended to her that every doctor medical doctor recommended that she did not because she did have to go with the chemo through the first part of her pregnancy ah, what an incredible woman and what an incredible story it was just such an amazing opportunity to, uh to know that you're with somebody who is literally taking the risk of sacrificing their life to save another. So, uh, these kind of things, of course, are very emotional for me, but very empowering as well, she hated her wigs, and so, you know, she hated the hats in the way, but she also, you know, didn't love being bald so that we were just kind of showcasing the trauma that but she was more than willing to do anything. And we found lots of cool, creative ways toe to really showcase had a beautiful body. She was actually a cheerleader for a professional football organization, so it was really a lot of fun to work with her. Ah, but it was really incredible to go through the experience with her and to actually be there with the baby and to see the baby and and to realize what an incredible sacrifice that really was. So there's some amazing sessions that happened in the world and, you know, it's it's certainly an honor to showcase seven part of this, having gone through surgery, mastectomy and and going through the rebuilding process, she had just finished her surgery. So she's feeling pretty proud of the girls and, uh, you know, is definitely ready to show them off a swell.