Nude Photography: Models Share How Not to Be Creepy (NSFW)

Do you feel like getting into nude photography? Well, here’s how not to do it in a creepy way.

Nude photography can be a sensitive subject. Whilst there’s nothing controversial about the human body, the same cannot always be said about a photographer’s intentions. For many, their motives are honest and they just want to create. However, for others, it’s sad to say that they’re looking for cheap thrills and ways to take advantage of a vulnerable situation. There’s also the camp that has all the best intentions in the world but still manages to tick the creepy male photographer box. So if you’re new to this or need to reflect on your own approach, here are some tips from The Phoblographer and active models working in the industry.

Check Your Intentions and Keep Opinions to Yourself

It’s kind of crazy that we have to say this, but if deep down you’re entering nude and boudoir photography because you just want to get laid or see some naked women, then this isn’t cool. Your intentions will no doubt be communicated through either your body language or words, and this will lead to models feeling very uncomfortable. Sure, the odd one may be up for some fun and games, but for the most part women want their profession, bodies, and boundaries to be respected – and rightly so!

If your intentions are more ethical and you genuinely want to create quality photography, great, you’re on the right path. But if you find that you’re attracted to your model, and her body and beauty excite you, then you need to keep on top of that. We’re not suggesting there is anything wrong with attraction, but those thoughts and feelings need to be kept to yourself. No matter how much nudity, provocative poses, or perceived sexual suggestions there are in a pose, remember a photo shoot is a place of work and should be treated like any other office in any other field.

Now let’s hear from those whose thoughts matter the most, the models.

Kat Yip @justkat_model

Photo by Belle Prive Photography.

Kat Yip is a model based in the UK. She brings with her over 11 years’ experience in the modeling industry. Now 29, she has been fortunate enough to not have had any major incidents whilst on a shoot. That doesn’t mean she doesn’t know her expectations when working with a male photographer, and that’s from the moment they make contact.

“An unprofessional experience I had was when a photographer asked me if I do nude and I sent him my portfolio with all my work and he asks me if I can send a personal full nude shot for him to see. That was very inappropriate when I’ve already sent him my work of what I do, that’s when I knew it wasn’t right so I just blocked him and moved on.” Giving further detail, she adds…

“It’s also, how they approach you as well like, they compliment you saying you have nice boobs or a nice ass and they talk about wanting to do a shoot with you and they will pay you big money. Those I know are mostly scams or just pervs wasting time. In my experience, a professional always talks about what you’re comfortable working with and ideas when it comes to doing any kind of shoot.”

Veruca Dulce @verucadulceofficial

Photo by Amanda Valentine. @Amandavalentine

Based in Colorado, Veruca Dulce has sadly had some negative experiences during her four years working as a model. When asked if she had had any issues, she told us…

“Oh absolutely. From commenting on my body to actually putting his hands on me. Some photographers get into this for disgusting and unprofessional reasons but for the most part, I’ve been able to check references, confer with other models, and ensure my safety by having someone else with me on the shoot.” Moving on to how a male photographer can make her feel reassured…

“I need them to be comfortable with me having an escort. I need them to keep the language professional and not have him push my boundaries. Inappropriate comments, touching, taking shots or asking for posing I’m not comfortable with and any boundary pushing is unprofessional.”

Evelyn Devere @evelyndevere

Photo by Henry Vance.

The most experienced model we spoke to, Evelyn Devere, has been working in the industry for 13 years. Whilst during that time she has mainly had a positive experience, she spoke candidly about some of the inappropriate encounters she has had along the way.

“Overall, I think I have been fairly lucky to avoid the worst situations that one can experience as a nude model. And I say lucky because especially when I was in my teens and early 20s, I definitely put myself in some really stupid situations that could have gone badly. That said, I have still had plenty of experiences where photographers made off-color comments: unnecessary comments about my body and their attraction to me, implications that the photos they took would be used later for self-pleasure or distributed amongst their friends. One photographer slowly directed my movements so that my vulva would be exposed to him–knowing that I choose not to shoot those photos, and assuring me that he couldn’t see it when I expressed discomfort. There have been other times where after the shoot, I hear the photographer’s racist or misogynistic views, and I would feel very uncomfortable about having exposed myself to him, knowing that he clearly did not respect me as a person.”

Photo by Gregg Lambton-Carr.

Evelyn shares ways she ensures she remains safe at all times, and some of the big no-nos from male photographers.

“If I feel like the photographer might be creepy (but not dangerous), I tend to try to book a shoot with another model, so I have someone else with me. A red flag is when a photographer refuses to allow an escort or friend to attend the shoot. A conscientious male photographer will recognize the power dynamics at play and be willing to accommodate his models to feel comfortable in whatever way they need. It’s kind of like the brown M&Ms only thing–many models have found things over the years that that are litmus tests for determining who is safe to work with. Once at the shoot, little things like offering a private room to change and bottled water can go a long way! Also, if it is a paid shoot and the price has already been agreed upon, paying at the beginning of the shoot can do a lot to make a model feel at ease and comfortable going ahead with the shoot, knowing that she won’t have to worry about a conflict afterwards. Photographers should mind their language and refrain from making inappropriate comments towards the model. If they’re serious about their work, they need to treat every shoot professionally–not just an excuse to see some women naked.”

How to Behave as a Nude Photographer Is Not Rocket Science

You will notice a consistent tone through all the comments from the models above. And this is likely to be the same for models throughout the whole industry: no touching, no inappropriate sexual comments, always allow an escort to accompany them when requested, and make sure you have strong references. The human body can be a beautiful source of creativity, and that works best when two (or more) creative people are working together with the best intentions. So take it all on board and ensure you’re one of the good guys.

All photos used with permission. Lead photo by Belle Prive Photography.