Posts Tagged ‘ beauty ’


Adding a new name to those featured here, a recently added Flickr contact, Ali Azimian gets his first outing…

While this may at first appear to simply be a gorgeous portrait shot, it is far more than that. Yes, the subject is a beautiful lady, and that fact alone helps make the image appealing. But it is the right half of the image as negative space that ensures the eye is directed at the model.

The high key processing is an interesting feature, as it largely masks the subject’s features, leaving only the subtlest outline to define her nose… it becomes a process of discovery to obtain definition. This then leaves the face defined by eyes and mouth – a sharply focused triplet without distrcation, the whole wrapped in a border of mostly softly blurred hair.

A stunning entrance; subtle yet powerful.


Something Noir

Next up in this return to posting, a stunning piece of model lighting from my friend Andy Poupart. Providing the form, the seductive Julie.

It’s quite obvious from the outset that this image breaks compositional rules. Not only is Julie positioned between the primary and secondary golden rations on the right side, her body language is providing a definite sense of movement in that same direction – through and out of the frame. And yet, the pose works powerfully in combination with the lighting and black and white processing.

In part, this is to do with the smooth yet powerful contrast across her features. Also, it is aided by the rough texture of the wall which acts as counterpoint to Julie’s soft form. That the lighting is clearly brighter out-of-frame to the right also helps provide validation for the sense of direction – dark an wild as she is, she cannot resist the light.

But the strongest element that allows the breaking of the rules to work is the arm that anchors the whole in the bottom left corner. It provides not only the anchor, but also a leading line and solid diagonal, as well as being one side of the most prominent triangle in the composition.

Another clear masterpiece.


We return now to Canadian photographer Sandy Phimester, and his film-based work with local models.


While I could look at the two images here independently, and comment on the strength of each’s composition, it is the combination into a diptych that has real power. With its convergent leading lines and more pronounced contrast between subject and setting, the right-side image is quicker to draw one’s attention. The female form, is side-on silhouette, is undeniably captivating. But Catherine’s pose provides the element of direction to redirect one’s attention, back to the left, and the tighter portrait.

Therein, while the contrast is between elements within the model’s appearance; a full range of tone giving depth to her form.

The balance between the two images is, itself, masterful composition. Contrasting contrasts. Both black and white, yet so very different. Both capturing the essence of Catherine’s beauty.

There is more to the composition of an image than what is within it. There is the world it occupies…

The Question

When it comes to stunningly lit images of models, Andy Poupart is one of the most accomplished photographers I know; technically faultless, with a great sense of style.

Tell a story, they say. Make the elements of your image interact in a way that tells us more about what is going on that the simple placement of subject matter within a setting. With studio-based model photography, that directive is perhaps more important than ever; the seamless grey/white background provides little context of its own. There is only the model, and her interaction with the camera, or perhaps a few props.

Here, the key to the composition is that interaction. Both Pearl’s gaze, and the so-light touch of her fingertips create a connection between her and the stool. There is a sense of direction inherent in her pose; predominantly (given her height) vertical, but with a horizontal component inferred by the juxtaposition of the two subjects. That the subjects are places on the horizontal golden ratios (one almost through through the centre of the stool, the other straight down Pearl’s centre line) also helps with the interactive balance (the scene would simply not have worked as well had the spacing been based on thirds).

There are two further compositional elements that make this such a strong image: the very subtle S-curve implied from the model’s pose, with head and leg providing the offset to the clean vertical of her torso; and the cleanliness of the setting, the minimalist studio environment that provides a sense of encompassing negative space – not so much on the sides, but the emptiness behind Pearl.

A most stunning lady in red.


Marcus Lam (DodogoeSLR) has only one previous mention herein, but that is largely because he doesn’t post enough. When he does, many are impressive shots, as this not-really-ex.


There are many things one can do with portraiture photography to make the the image really stand out. Most involve a slight twist on the standard view of a person. Here, there are two of those techniques used, and several other compositional elements that make this an excellent work. The most obvious differentiator here is the use of a landscape rather than a portrait view of a subject who is, essentially, upright. This provides borders in the form of the negative space background, allowing the eye to wander sideways a little, but always be drawn back to Erica. The second twist is the choice to light her back, throwing the face into high contrast, and allowing the overall form of her perch atop those heels to dominate over any overt femininity.

While those two aspects may be the elements that make the image stand out, it is the compositional elements that keep one glued to it: the prevalence of triangles (head and bent arm; body to extended hand; tighter body and leg shape), and the way they interact with fine but stark lines, which bring the eye upwards to that devilish smirk.

It may be a simple shot, but it is subtle; enticing.

Every angel is terrible.

It has indeed been a month since last featured something from Jessica Islam Lia (evening sun.) This, though, demanded attention.
Chiaroscuro portraiture can be a very expressive, emotional medium. The ability to capture the lines that make up emotional visualisation allows the image to be simplified – only the bare minimum presented. Here, the use of extreme lighting and dark clothing allows the model’s face to stand out in an empty field; an area given dimension by the lighting on the wall.

Her sombre mood and stark beauty combine to a dangerous allure: powerful and mysterious; the pent up potential to be terrifying. This is enhanced by her placement within the dark portion of the tonal diptych, and the placement of her eyes so high in the frame, looking down on us from the secondary golden ratio.

Truly captivating beauty; there is compulsion to abase myself before it.


When it comes to model photography, one of the best I know is Andy Poupart (andy_57); he not only captures his subjects looking stunning, he adds strong composition.

There are several factors that make this image more than just a wonderfully image of an attractive girl. The first – the most obvious – is the lighting. While Liz is strongly lit all around, there is a sinuous line nearest the camera that is in shadow: her hair is ablaze on one side, her face glows on the other, yet there is still a mood of mystery in the shadow between. (Could this classify as a particular form of diptych?) This is a lighting technique used much in film – slightly confusing as it is rarely realistic – but one that really captures personality and presence.

That shadow line gives us the first instance of another feature that makes this image work so well: the S-curve. It is an emphasis of the same curve in Liz’ pose: strong but gentle tones of femininity.

The last major compositional element at play here is present no less than seven times: the triangle. The subtlest are the two halves of Liz’ face, in light and in shadow. The area of her hair and face is the third, and this is a subset of the one between hair and elbow. Two more are formed by her arms, with the last being the tight musculature of her abdomen: a powerful example of seductive physique.

Additional to this, we have the lighting, creating a blue aura behind Liz (on a perfect golden ratio line, as it happens), lifting her out of the plain darkness of the rest of the background.

Compellingly sensual.

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