**Currently on over 6,000 Romance Novel Covers!
Romance Novel Cover "Hero" Video Montage
for Photographer Niki B.
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My 2011 Calendar
Actively modeling since 1998 (the past 16 years)
, from numerous fitness and romance novel magazines, retail ads, catalogs, lead in a dozen music videos, television commercials, movies, tradeshows and promotions, to currently on over 6,000 Romance Novel Covers; more covers than anyone in history (Fabio's on about 230 )
. So I'm still a model and always looking out for and helping other models, and know what models need and want to know for shoot information. I'm also a casting director for various music video directors/producers and photographers, I'm sent all over the country to speak at Romance Novel Conventions, conferences and events to give my workshop on branding, marketing, self-promotion, networking, images and cover art, and I write a monthly column for a romance novel review magazine.
Q. As a female model, where do I fit with your RNC businesses?
I'm continually looking for beautiful/gorgeous women to shoot with for romance novel covers from the images we create, to be sold on my romance novel stock image website that is specific to the romance novel industry only, NOT general stock. I am the creator and owner of this company (RNC), the producer, director, wardrobe stylist, theme-creator, set-designer, image-selector, photo editor and male model in all the photos/covers you see in my portfolio on here (scroll up, yes that's me - I am the male model in EVERY image on this profile
) and on my stock image website, I am not the photographer, so please, no messages saying that you have a great-looking boyfriend or husband that you would love to shoot with for novel covers. The only cover shoots I set-up are with me, and various female models from all different ages, eye & hair color, ethnic backgrounds, and heights - believe it or not, the shorter you are the better. And I've been shooting with the same photographer for all my RNC shoots for the past 6 years.
Q. Some of your covers/images are too risqué for me, so I guess we can't shoot?
Each shoot is different and specific to what is needed for that shoot, as well as the look of the female model to be shot, her ethnicity, and what she is comfortable shooting. So what you see for covers/cover-images on my portfolio does not mean we will be shooting the same as ALL of them. We would discuss ahead of time what we would be shooting so that there are no surprises, and we wouldn't shoot anything you would be uncomfortable with.
Q. Can anyone use the images we create?
No. The images we would shoot are not for general stock for anything, which is stated in the image licensing, as well as in my contract/release you would be signing. The images are only for the romance novel industry.
Q. Would I be shooting for one specific cover?
No, always for many covers. I either set-up RNC shoots whenever I want to add more image content to my website, or when I get a Custom Cover Image Shoot
order, which is when an author/client pays me to shoot a specific image they want for their one cover, or multiple images for their book series, which is exclusive to just them and not resold to others. During these Custom Cover Image Shoots
l'll shoot other RNC image sets of different genres and styles with that same female model for RNC content. These additional RNC image sets are the images made available for other romance novel authors, cover artists and/or publishers. It is not worth it for me to just shoot the one Custom Cover Image Set
without doing these additional sets. To help smaller authors, I don't charge very much for a Custom Cover Image, and I spend a lot of time on each custom shoot, pre and post shoot. When I have time, I go through my MM message folders of those who have answered the questions within this profile, and I set-up paid RNC content shoots, without the need of a Custom Cover Image
Q. How much do you pay your co-models?
I pay my co-models a flat rate of $250, accompanied by a signed contract/release, for a 4-5 hour shoot with at least 5 outfit changes.
Q. I'm a pro and have been modeling for many years so can't we do a shorter shoot?
My shoots are not at all like solo portfolio shoots you've done, or even other 'couples' shoots you've done. There is more involved since the images are specific to Romance Novel Covers, so not just any random, romantic or sexy pose will work. There are many specifics to hand placements, arm positions, expressions that have to match between the two of us, body and head positioning, vital key focus points, major do's and don'ts, etc. So it's not like another random portfolio shoot. Every model I've shot with says our shoot was nothing like anything they've ever done before and that they had a lot of fun! Being in the romance novel industry since 2002 (12 years)
, I know exactly what is needed and what isn't.
Q. Do I get any images from our shoot, and if so, how many?
Whatever images I upload, I then send you the watermarked display version of them, so you know which images I've worked on, finished and uploaded. Any of those that you really like and want for your portfolio, you let me know and I send you a version without my watermark, but with my logo in a corner.
Q. What are the different styles we would shoot?
That all depends on your look, your ethnic background, your hair color and length, and what you are comfortable shooting...
ROMANTIC & SENSUAL
- You would be in your own wardrobe you would bring with you, down to implied topless (for SENSUAL image sets) (they are much more preferred for romance novel covers as they can be used for any novel genre/era without the images being dated with specific attire)
. Your 'nipples/areolas' would always be covered with your hair, your/my arms, hands, bed sheets, us being chest-to-chest, etc., and with very romantic, sweet, sensual, and hot expressions. Our chemistry via our expressions and body language is what makes these images!
Image Sets (for those who want to do these - this is NOT Adult/Porn, it's a Romance Novel Industry genre)
- With Erotica images (NOT REQUIRED)
, you would start off in lingerie/underwear (that you bring with you)
, and down to implied topless and possibly implied nude; like shower/bed shots (IF YOU ARE COMFORTABLE WITH THAT)
, but with 'women parts' always covered. Our really hot and passionate expressions and body language is what is needed for these images. Again, if you want to do these, as they are very popular and much desired. Since some models are not sure if they are fully comfortable with these, I shoot a range from what I call "Soft-Erotica" and "Hard-Erotica", but all still classy/tame enough to be on covers of romance novels sold on public bookstore shelves. Also, I have a very well-acquired reputation to maintain, so I never post anything that ends up looking too sexual.
, Example 2
, Example 3
, Example 4
, Example 5
, Example 2
, Example 3
, Example 4
, Example 5 (Example 5 Cover)
NO NUDITY will EVER show in ANY of the images, not before or after; implied images are IMPLIED. If something is showing while we're shooting, my photographer will tell us so we can cover it BEFORE he takes the shot; I want as little Photoshop work as possible, as I do all the post-production work myself. Our poses would be similar to these: Sexy 'Couples' Images
as well as the images in my MM portfolio; depending on the styles we discuss we'll be shooting. So a message to me saying "Sorry, I don't do nudity", only means you didn't read my profile, as I don't do nudity either, which I just explained. "Nude" means you are showing yourself completely nude with nothing hidden/covered. Being nude, but your nipples/breasts/genitalia being covered with something is what "Implied Topless" and/or "Implied Nude" is. It is in my contract that no nipples, areolas or genitalia will ever show in the images.
Q. Do you provide the wardrobe?
That depends on the image sets we'd be shooting, which would be various genres/looks determined by the wardrobe I have for you to wear, as well as whatever wardrobe you have to bring with you listed below. For the most part I only provide any historical attire, as it is impossible for me to have every size of every other type of contemporary clothing that could be shot in.
Image Sets (usually Caucasian/non-ethnic)
- These are typically Regency, Renaissance, Medieval, Viking, Highlander, Victorian, Western, and Prairie, so we would be in periodic outfits/wardrobe that I would provide. However, if you have any, please bring them.
ROMANTIC, SENSUAL & SEXY-EDGY, EROTICA (you would provide any of these contemporary items)
- lingerie (preferably all lace pieces, not thick or padded push-up bras)
- Bras just like this: http://photos.modelmayhem.com/photos/12 … f309ff.jpg
(where the lace is flat to your skin - when you are wearing anything lace/sheer that you can see through, you won't be facing the camera - I can't/won't show nipples at all in my images)
- full lingerie sets w/garters, sheer stockings (not saloon/go-go dancing fish-net)
http://romancenovelconvention.com/Model … e-Sets.htm
- heels (only open toed)
one solid color, preferably black, red, white
- one-piece negligees
- sheer & silk/satin robes (again, with sheer outfits we would be chest to chest)
- cute boy-shorts
- different cut/style panties
- jeans (even if ripped for Sexy/Edgy Contemporary sets)
- jean shorts/skirts
- high boots
If you don't have many of these things, just bring whatever you do have and I'll make it all work. One girl claimed she read my profile, yet showed up with just what she had on and said "Oh, I thought you provided all the wardrobe"
, but I still made it work with what she had on; shots of me taking off her clothes, and the rest all implied with sheets, towels, robes, and just our body parts covering each other. She wasn't expecting that, but that's what happens when you say you read the details, but really didn't
- You can also bring whatever else you think may work, but nothing costume-looking; no sexy-nurse or sexy-maid Halloween costumes, as they are not realistic for what actual maids and nurses wear who are written about in the novels.
- Baggy blouses that can hang over a shoulder are GREAT! Many of today's tops and dresses can be made to look like tops and dresses from hundreds of years ago when put together with what I wear, how much of it shows in the images once I crop them, and what the cover artist later does with the cover art.
COWBOY/COUNTRY (if you have these items/outfits we'll shoot this as well)
- jeans (ripped and not)
- cowboy boots
- plaid shirts
- earth-tone color tank-tops
- 1/4 sleeve & t-shirts (plain)
- long frilly Spanish looking skirts
- jean shorts and skirts
- cowboy hats (not costume colored; pink, white - but REAL looking cowboy hats)
- anything else you have that looks cowboy/country, but simple, not busy; busy is distracting to the eyes and draws away from our connection/expressions
- jean and/or leather shorts/skirts
- leather pants
- tall boots
- leather jackets
- crop, tube and tank tops
- leather, lace gloves
- anything else you have that looks biker/tough-girl looking
OTHER GENRES (Vampire, Native American, Military, Detective/Spy, Wedding, etc.)
Will be discussed per model, depending on your look and what is needed at the time.
Q. Do you provide a make-up artist?
You require minimal, if any, makeup. You need to have a fresh, clean, natural face without excessive colors, foundation, or extras such as hard liner, dark-solid eyebrows, thick-fake eyelashes, etc. (eye-lash extensions and very natural-looking fake eyelashes are fine). These images need to look natural and timeless. We all know what era specific make-up and hairstyles are from (examples: 1980's), so images with those specific styles could only be used for stories of those decades.
Not wearing era-dating make-up is essential, as many/most images are cropped to torso, or tight into our faces to focus on the chemistry/expressions, so images need to be created to be available for many genre covers of many eras (notice the very little make-up, and how the make-up is all skin-tone colors):
, Example 2
, Example 3
, Example 4
, Example 5
, Example 6
So you would be doing your own make-up, AND ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY NO FINGERNAIL POLISH AT ALL. Commonly worn fingernail polish wasn't invented until the 1920's. So if you had on colored nail polish, our images would not be able to be used on 75% of novel covers (before contemporary)
. If you have a French manicure then your nail tips have to look natural in length, not long - I prefer natural nails. Remember, this is not a glamour shoot, but do bring your make-up for Sexy-Edgy Contemporary, Biker/Tough-Girl, and/or Vampire sets we may do, where then you can smoke-up your eyes, increase your eyeliner, lipstick, etc.
Q. Do you provide a hair-stylist?
Same as with make-up, you require non-styled hair. Your hair has to be hair that would be seen/worn in any and every genre/era.
- Long, thick, full hair is best. Hair is a prominent feature on romance novel covers. If you're a blonde, but have dark roots/dark eyebrows, we wouldn't be able to shoot until they matched your main hair color.
- If you have straight hair, I may ask you to come with it curled or in large curlers (not tight spiral curls)
, so that your hair will be wavy to start. As your curls fall out, you'll then have a different look for us to shoot.
- If you have hair extensions, PLEASE WEAR THEM ALL, not just two little pieces. If your images in your portfolio show you with long, thick, full hair, then that is what is expected when you arrive. If a hair-stylist did that for you, or you no longer have your extensions, then I need to know this before we schedule a shoot.
Q. Where would the shoot be?
All indoor shoots are typically shot at my house studio in Chatsworth/Porter Ranch (Los Angeles)
. If you are in from out of town and staying at a hotel, we could shoot in your hotel room instead, as this would give our images different backgrounds, and would also make it easier on you. It does not have to be an expensive/elaborate hotel, as the background and furniture shown is very minimal and kept simple. Outdoor shoots are around the L.A. area depending on the theme/genre and the weather, which I would let you know when we confirm which genres we are to shoot.
Q. Do you have a problem with me bringing someone with me?
Not at all, you are more than welcome to... as long as it is a female and someone not on a deadline to leave if you want to shoot longer. No boyfriends, husbands, male assistants or male friends (I know your male 'assistant' or 'friend' is really your boyfriend)
as it completely prevents you from using the expressions and body language needed to pull off these images. I've allowed it in the past and had completely wasted shoots because the girls were afraid of what their man would think with them using these poses and expressions on another man, so they held back and pulled back in every shot. I've been doing 'couple' shoots for 16 years, so I know what works and what doesn't. I think my resume and the amount of female models I've shot with (over 200) and continue to shoot with, speaks for itself
And I've yet to ever have someone bring an escort, other than a model's mother about 5 years ago as she was the model's only ride and she was totally cool, and another model's female cousin about 4 years ago, as she was the model's personal hair stylist - Both the mother and cousin ended up falling asleep on my couch anyway.
Q. Can I shoot any genre I'd like?
That all depends on your look, wardrobe we both have, and your ethnicity...
- Are able to do a full range of all genres, depending on their look and physique.
AFRICAN AMERICANS & ASIANS
, etc. (IR = InterRacial... a very big genre)
- Typically, are usually only used on very Sensual and Erotica covers, as African American and Asian women write these stories and they tend to be very sexual with their story-writing, almost always writing Erotica stories. So the covers need to tell their story. However, I'll still shoot a range from Romantic on up, with African Americans and Asians, and even some Historical sometimes. But we would still have to do up to Erotica image sets (even if just Soft-Erotica)
, to still give the IR authors what they mainly need for their Romance Novel Covers.
A message from a Bestselling IR author...
"Jimmy, I really want to thank you for all the IR images you create. As an Interracial author it made it hard to have sensual and erotica covers with a white male and black female. Most times they were just cut and paste. Then your photos hit the world and you changed things. You did what "Fabio" never could do... you are versatile. You go from Regency Rogue, Cowboy to IR lover and every picture is loaded with intense passion and sensuality. I have three releases that will be out in in January and you are gracing the cover of two of them. Please keep them coming.
Yvette, Bestselling Author of IR Erotic Romance"
A few messages from other authors...
I love Jimmy's work. Super nice guy (met him last year at RNConvention) and brilliant entrepreneur....he is THE original when it comes to romance novel imagery sites (there was NO ONE and I repeat NO ONE who did this before he did and everyone else who is now doing it is following in HIS footsteps). He was the first and will always be tops in book cover imagery.
- Author, Cynthia Lucas
Dear Jimmy, I'm a romance author and have been writing for many years. Now that I have the rights back to my books, I'm publishing them online, and have now entered the world of getting new covers, looking for the best stock images and generally trying to find that perfect cover. I've looked at hundreds of stock images over the past year. After I discovered your site, of course I looked at every photo on it. I am so impressed with your stock images. The quality of them, the posing, and most importantly, the emotions that are portrayed, are wonderful.
You always manage to capture love, tenderness, and sensuality in your poses. The hero and the heroine really look at each other, really engage. The emotion and sense of romance were the first things I noticed about your pictures. I connected with them, so I'm sure readers will too. I wish I'd found your site much earlier, but I will be looking for images there from now on. I'm sure a lot of people don't realize that modeling and creating a fantasy is an art form, but it definitely is. You are a fantastic artist. Thank you for your contributions to romance covers.
- Author, Catherine S.
THE 4 "STYLES" OF IMAGES TO POSSIBLY SHOOT:
The word is "Erotica", not "Erotic". The word "Erotic" is always related to Adult/porn, while "Erotica" is a label used in the romance novel industry to describe stories that are more than just romantically written. They needed a single word for it, as they certainly couldn't label it "Stories That Are More Than Romantic"
So don't automatically relate "Erotica" Romance Novel Covers/images (implied) with "Erotic/Adult" images (nude/pornographic).
There isn't any drastic difference between Sensual and Soft-Erotica - the poses can be exactly the same, but the expressions alone could look more seductive, fingertips pushed a little deeper onto the skin showing more intensity, etc.
A model I've booked and shot with 8 times now, 7 of those shoots being this year (2014), because she is so great and open to all styles up to Erotica; meaning we can shoot far more diverse images, I texted her the day after one of our first Erotica shoots to thank her for another GREAT shoot, and for always being open to shoot up to Erotica style images, and she responded saying "I didn't even know what we were shooting was Erotica. I thought it was all just hot & sexy!"
And she doesn't do adult or nude work at all.
I know everyone wants to do Historical, but Historical is a "genre", not a "style" - the 4 "styles" I listed above can all be shot within almost every genre, including Historical. So if you say you just want to shoot Historical... Ok, sure. We'll shoot Hard-Erotica Historical image sets our entire shoot... naked the entire shoot with our Historical wardrobe on the floor around us - Makes you glad you actually read all of this now huh?
DESCRIPTION OF SHOOTING STYLES
Both wearing clothes, looking sweet at each other, soft touches to each other.
Strongly embracing each other intimately, seductive expressions, shirts on, partially coming off, to implied topless.
Implied topless (Soft-Erotica), implied nude (Hard-Erotica); over or under bed sheets, in the shower, hands on intimate body parts and/or implied to be.
- SOFT EROTICA: More of a "making love" look/feel
- HARD EROTICA: More of a "hot/steamy sex" look/feel
(Again, "Erotica" does NOT mean porn/adult or that you are actually having sex during the shoot - If you think that from looking at my images... THANK YOU! I must being doing my job well!
Obviously the more styles you are comfortable shooting up to, the more valuable you are, which can then have me booking you over and over again, as it allows for many more styles/looks from each image set and shoot. I know you have to feel comfortable during the shoot, which is my #1 concern, otherwise it will show in your facial expressions and body language. So read the TAGS left on my profile from models who have shot with me, as they may help you with that
Feel free to contact any of them as well if you want. And for the record, I barely ever do any Hard-Erotica image sets/shoots, even though I have many models willing to shoot those.
Q. Ok, I'm interested! What do you need from me?
Great. Please send me the answers to the 10 questions below...
Please copy-paste these questions below into your response message to me, along with your answers
Which images of yours are the most current for hair length, color and physique?
What's your contact info you check regularly other than MM?
What's your astrological/zodiac sign? (yes, it's relevant - will explain later)
Are you "allergic" to cats and/or dogs, if so, will allergy medicine control it?
Which of the 4 "styles" of images described above are you comfortable shooting up to?
... Now to see if you actually read my profile, as the answers to these next set of questions are all answered in my profile, so if you don't know the answers, you didn't "read" my entire profile word for word, you just "skimmed" it over and now you feel dumb as you have to go back to the beginning and actually "read" everything word for word
Who is the male model you will be shooting with?
What color nail polish are you to wear during RNC shoots?
Who would be doing your hair & make-up?
How is your make-up needed to look?
Are you bringing any wardrobe or is it all provided for you?
Lastly, please don't ask what style am I thinking about shooting with you, as I've just asked YOU which style YOU are willing to shoot up to, as we would shoot ALL the styles up to the style you are willing to shoot up to (so you have the answer to that question, not me
) Every shoot/image-set we would do, we would shoot a range of all the styles you listed that you are comfortable shooting up to, with all the genres/wardrobe we would shoot in, which is never a pre-determined thing. The genres/wardrobe all depends on your look, the wardrobe I have that works for you, as well as what you bring with you
Jimmy Thomas - RNC
Jimmy Thomas Romance Novel "Hero" Video Montage
(this was made a few years ago, hence it noting only 2,000 covers)
Website for my annual Romance Novel Convention in Las Vegas
Radio Ad for this year's RNConvention 2014 in Las Vegas
Romance Novel Convention 2013 Promo Video