Thursday, September 10, 2009

It's not about being pretty

Awhile back, fairly shortly after I'd started modeling, I was chatting with a friend about my work with photographers. She commented something to the effect of, "The goal is to make you look good." I fish-mouthed for a moment before gathering my thoughts enough to tell her that it wasn't about making me look good, but about creating something visually interesting. It might entail me looking pretty, it might not.

I've found there to be little room for egos in the world of art modeling. In fact, I try pretty hard to keep mine out of it. It's all too easy to get caught up in how any given image makes me look, but that's not what matters. What matters is how well the image stands, how well it draws in the viewer. And it doesn't have to make me look pretty to do that.


  1. I like what you say in this one ~ As a photographer~ and one who is getting more and more into artistic nudes, a good artistic nude MUST convey a feeling~thought~or response~ Well said!!

  2. I once had a graduate student, while the class was critiquing their paintings from the last month, ask me if I had to look in the mirror when I went home to remember what I looked like. ;o) It always amazes me how artists and photographers change how I perceive myself.

  3. Hi Kari,
    Just wanted to say I'm enjoying reading your blog. I've been and still am a Fine Art Nude and Erotic Photographer based in Perth, Western Australia after leaving Los Angeles, Denver, CO (where I was born), Frankfurt Germany (educated), and Fort Collins, CO (University). You have the perfect mind set that I try to teach the models here. It's not about beauty but about form, design, a feeling that is non sexual. So many get into nude modelling here to try to get into the men's magazine. Trust me, I've shot that for a living for quite a while and this style of modelling is what usually comes back to haunt you, not the artistic modelling.
    If and when I come to the States and especially Colorado (as I have family there) would love to catch up for either a chat or shoot or both.
    If you ever want to experience Australia, drop a line, I can be reached at; website is

    By the way I used to live in Loveland, CO while working at Teledyne Water-Pik and was shooting then at Horsetooth Reservoir... Take care and nice meeting you.