Monday, August 13, 2012

The Cat Has Left the Bag

I've done quite a bit of harping on the notion that once you're naked on the internet, there's no taking it back.  And now, well past a year since I stopped working as a full-time art model, I am reminded of this lesson.

Why, you might ask?  Because this morning, a note in my inbox awaited from one of my favorite photographers.  It was mostly a catch-up note.  "Hey, how've ya been, this is what I've been up to, by the way, a photo of you was in this show/magazine/whatever."  That sort of thing is pretty par for the course for me.

Except in this case, the news was that a photo of me- naked- had appeared in Times Square.  On a jumbotron.  If one was to concoct the most ridiculous possible hypothetical scenario for where a nude photo could end up, this would probably be it.  "What, it's not like a nude photo of you is going to end up in Times Square, right?"  Ha!

And it's not as though the photographer planned for this to happen.  It's not like we shot that series with the plan, "Yeah, baby, this is headed straight for Manhattan!"  It got accepted into a show.  That show grew into something more ambitious.  And kept growing.  And then a year later, there it is.  Times Square.

I've had something roughly similar happen as a photographer, too.  Photo gets accepted into a show.  From there, photo makes its way into another, much larger show.  High-resolution digital copy that had been sent for promo of the first show gets shuffled around for promotion of the other show, and suddenly, my photos are making an appearance in a magazine.  I am very pleased that others made the judgement calls along the way that led to this, but make no mistake, I had minimal involvement- or even awareness- in this happening until it was a done deal.

So thank fucking goodness that the model I shot who popped up in a magazine had the good sense to specify that she didn't want her face showing in any fetish-flavored photos.  And thank fucking goodness that it's no secret amongst friends and family that I'm a nude model.  Because some cats are much trickier to get back in the bag than others.

I really cannot say this enough.  Images are potent.  Sometimes they do sneaky things.  Sometimes they pop up where you don't expect them to, long after you'd expect them to have disappeared.  Make your decisions accordingly.


  1. As always an intelligent and insightful post to your blog. Thanks for your willingness to share your experience and lessons learned.

  2. Thanks for posting this. I've had several younger girls apply to some of my calls for nude art models thinking it's an easy way to get started. That it won't make it to main stream media, etc...

    i'll remember this to tell them in the future.