For some photographers it is more than the right light and a good camera … it’s emotion, thoughtful planning, an eye for the beauty of the human form, it’s composition and the artistic trials and errors of editing that follows the shoot. Such a photographer is Michael Bilotta. The world of art and art lovers can enjoy the results of his work because he has chosen to make his contribution.
Read more about Michael’s thoughts on his blog.
Michael doesn’t photograph only nude men, his interests are many. But through his work in this area it is impossible to deny the beauty of the male form, the grace and the natural elegance, the compelling lines and sensual components and textures that comprise the human male.
Michael is a native of Maine. He is currently living and working in Worcester. After studying music at Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA, he spent 10 years playing in local clubs as a singer songwriter, writing and releasing two CDs. In 2001, with the advent of digital photography, he picked up a boyhood interest that was not possible to pursue in the days prior to digital: photography and design. Since 2001, he has been honing his visual craft and has settled into a role as a conceptual/surrealist artist in the photographic arts.
See more of Michael’s work or buy a print at his website.
Michael is passionate about his work, techniques and ideas. What follows are his own words.
Nude Male Photography
“I started using models about a year ago. I was using myself for practice and it just became too difficult to be behind the camera and in front of it. I really wanted to shoot the naked body for a lot of reasons, the main one being the challenge, and the art of it. I also gravitate towards a timelessness in my work, and the thing that kills timelessness more than anything else is clothing. It instantly tells you culture, time period, fashion trend, etc. We are all naked, underneath all that, and that is truly a universal. For all those reasons and more, I wanted to shoot nudes. Plus, it certainly cuts down on the wardrobe budget!”
“As I started exploring the world of nude photography, I saw some conventions and trends I was not too fond of, and after a few months of exploring I would almost roll my eyes at some of it. The Flandrin Pose, for example, the one where the model is sitting on the ground, knees up to head, arms wrapped around lower legs, head usually tucked into knees, and yes, it’s a beautiful pose, but it also seems one that indicates shyness and shame of the male genitalia. That was the pattern I was seeing: shadows or hands over crotch to conceal, and very little full frontal nudity. I am speaking mainly of the Fine Art Nude Photography world. There are plenty of novice or semi pro or even pro photographers that don’t do this, but this concealment seems to be the norm.”
“When choosing my first model, I went the route of soliciting on craigslist, and I realized there we motivations behind those responding that were less than artistic, less than honest. I decided I needed a “real” model. After perusing ModelMayhem.com, I decided on Ed Barron (next picture), who is a professional art model, which seemed to make sense – he did this for a living, so obviously he was going to be comfortable posing naked. Ed brought to our first session not only utter ease at being nude, but an arsenal of poses to give me when my ideas ran out – this was, after all, my first shoot with a model, my first shoot with a nude model, and I had just gotten off a plane the night before and was tired! I just wanted to get my feet wet and didn’t get into anything involved with him, I just wanted to get it over with.” “After he left, I started editing, and I really liked what was done. I posted them where I could, mainly flickr.com, and there was a lot of response. Good response. After a couple months, I decided to do more with Ed, and this time had a bit of a concept to explore: mortality, aging, fear of dying. Ed was a trooper on this shoot, allowing me to pour flour and cornmeal all over him, the man was practically breaded! This shoot required more of an actor than a model, and Ed came through wonderfully. He is better than he probably realizes. This shoot really upped my exposure, and gave me some of my first “hits” online, hits being very relative.” “After this, I decided to broaden my portfolio, Ed was most of it at this point. I did back to Continue reading