Sunday, January 30, 2011


It's a term that gets thrown around, often in a somewhat derogatory way, to describe those of us who spend time on both sides of the camera. Some came to modeling through photography, and others of us came to photography through modeling.

I always find it fascinating to see the differences and similarities in somebody's work, depending on what side of the camera they're on. I find it especially fascinating if I'm already familiar with their work as a model.

When working as a model, you're fitting yourself into somebody else's vision. You still have the leeway to pick and choose whose visions you help bring to life, and which of those visions you add to your portfolio. Personal artistic preferences, marketability, any number of considerations can influence that decision. You can certainly glean insights into somebody by the modeling work that they choose to display, but it doesn't tell you everything.

When working as a photographer, you're in the driver's seat. I love seeing what models do when they fully hold the reins of creative control. While many photographers will offer to shoot model's concepts, I've found that I'm often better off shooting my ideas myself. I can't help but wonder if others have had the same experience. Shooting your own concept allows you to build, adjust, refine it from the ground up.

To see somebody's work as a model, you see who they are through the lenses of others. When you see somebody's work as a photographer, you see who they are- what compels them, what they find captivating, inspiring- through their own eyes.

Or at the very least, you learn what they find visually interesting.

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