Robert Gaines JrPhotographer Male Ithaca, New York, US
My Website: Robert Gaines Photography.comMy MM URL: http://www.modelmayhem.com/4741
Mayhem # 1811674
This is a very long profile but I feel it is necessary for me to connect with the right models. If you are looking for images you have never gotten before please read to the bottom. There are tons of awesome photographer technicians on this sight. My experience leads me to search for more than technique (which I also have) but something I will someday be remembered for. I want my images to be collected and auctioned at great prices. I have had commercial and technical success, but not that type of success yet.
I am an editorial style photographer with over 30 years experience.
I spent 10 years living in a town of 400 people in the Central Iowa area. Editorial/erotic/nude/art was not that particular communities' taste (their idea of great art was quilting) so I spent my time shooting Birds, Bugs, Bees, and Macro. It stretched my compositional and lighting techniques but not my creative bone.
I have had 7 museum solo shows, 3 in Phoenix, 1 in Iowa and 3 in Colorado, as well as participation in numerous group exhibitions.
I have the honor of being the only photographer to win Best of Show in the annual mixed discipline (including Sculpture, Paintings, and other media types) held at Phoenix College for the image "Almost Perfect" which I will keep as the last image in my portfolio on MM.
My studio's work was in several different categories.
1. Weddings, which I had half a dozen photographers hired and trained to cover for the most part
2. Topless dancers who were the bulk of business and provided most of the material for my art nudes. They came to me because of my reputation. I was thoroughly professional with them, never hit on them, not a customer at the clubs, and I made images of them different from any "photographer" who had ever shot them before. They often commented on that.
3. Sports. For 3 years I had the honor of shooting the Arizona Cardinals. Later, I shot college football and other sports in Iowa.
4. Boudoir Photography where amateurs came to me for maybe the first or only time they have exposed themselves in order to get pictures for their lovers.
5. Commercial Advertising which involved any and all subjects from point of sale to posters and TV advertising. This was by far the most challenging. Say a rock group wants their poster shot on a cliff at the side of a lake. I would have to find a way to match THEIR vision in sometimes impossible situations.
I have had the desire to create art since early childhood but I was REALLY TERRIBLE at it. My hands were never able to create what I saw in my mind. It was in 1982 that I found photography. Suddenly the creations were not limited by the limitations of my dexterity. Now, always with the collaboration of a model, beautiful and expressive artwork can be found. I say "found" because I generally don't start out with anything more than the basic "clay" I have to work with. The model, location, and light suggest the image (unless it is a commercial assignment). Throw in suggestive elements such as dress or props and it sends us down paths of discovery - It is therefore very difficult for me to provide a full Image Concept as requested by many models on MM.
My work in Phoenix specialized in Editorial Fashion and Art Nude photography. I shot on film back then and lost tens of thousands of images to a disaster (a flood) that happened to my studio in 1994. I only have a few images that were not in my studio file cabinets when disaster struck. AND I only have a few of those scanned for display on the web. I have provided images to show you the WAY I shoot and how I SEE a model. If a photographer's portfolio is filled with a certain vision of people, then that is probably hardwired into him and you can't expect anything else. My vision is soft and gentle. I see the hurts and joys of the world through the eyes of my models.
I pick a model and a location, allow the model to act as costumer, and then start the organic process when we meet. I always hope to discover the "elephant inside the marble." If you don't know that parable, here it is:
A sculptor was once asked how to carve an elephant out of a piece of marble.
His reply was, 'You take a block of marble and chip away all the parts that are not elephant.'
While there are set rules of thumb that need to be used to make a properly exposed photograph, I have no formula in my artwork. I never treat any shoot the same as another. Commercial work has tons of set formulas that I feel stifled by. Every situation and model is different and is treated so.
I am basically a shy person and always spend some time talking to a model before we start shooting. In that time we not only get to know each other but I have time to study them informally to see some of their strengths and weakness. I can see how he or she moves, the ease with which they smile and hundreds of other subliminal details that go into making the images. It saves a lot of time during the actual shoot. It also gives the model a chance to check me out; to see what kind of people they are going to be opening themselves up to.
For me, great images are more than just a pose, lighting, and exposure. There has to be an energy. I try to create a moment beyond the separate work of model posing and photographer clicking. When there is a real connection, or energy flow, between model and photographer it is captured - and viewers can feel it.
it is a one in a million lighting bolt that speaks to model, photographer, and viewer alike. The goal is to find that moment during every shoot. There is a cause and effect relationship where the model and photographer have built the trust that comes from seeing the results of the first shots, and second, and so on, that grows. As a model, you really have no idea what the photographer is doing until you see the images. That is why, with digital photography, I love being able to stop and show the model what I have been seeing as the shoot progresses. But that is no replacement for the final, photoshopped, cropped, and enlarged image to really understand the photographer's vision and how the model fits into it. After seeing the first images the model learns to trust so that greater and greater images can be made. When this happens, the photos can have an elegance and grace that reminds one of a great symphony.
This is the work I need to create.
These are the models I am looking for.
Are you one of them?
I write these words hoping you have read, understood and resonated with them and that we can come together to find those moments and record them.
Shanna MM #2485412
She was awesome! A year later and I am still post processing great shots from the shoot. The idea was to give me material to work with for Photoshop work. She did not disappoint! She was professional, on time, patient with equipment malfunctions, and followed directions excellently. She was underdressed in very cold and uncomfortable situations and work like a trooper. I hope to shoot with her again soon.
Sophie Leggs MM #534242.
We had a great time shooting in the 5 star hotel, The Broadmoore, in Colorado Springs. We did everything natural light (and it's pretty darn dark in there) so we've got quite a lot of grain in the shots.
Sophie was the perfect model, which means she agreed to everything I asked ;-). She brought site appropriate outfits and hair style, and called when she was going to be 10 minutes late, which is all you can ask.
I will be calling upon her many times in the future and will always consider her for paid gigs.
Chelsea Hinrichs MM #1861399
Chelsea was wonderful! My wife and I have discussed adopting her.
Ally Gator MM#2112986
She is a perfectly proportioned 5'1" beauty. Look at an image of her and you won't know she is not 5'8" runway model. She was prompt, prepared, attentive, professional, and VERY hard working.
Shanna Nicole Smith MM#2485412
Shanna is a china skinned, smiling, little cherub. She was awesome to work with, putting up with freezing temperatures while shooting experimental photographs. I was fully clothed and couldn't handle the cold. Perfectly able to follow instructions and determined to get the shot. Well worth the fees she charges!
Sidney Anne MM#1813706
Sidney is a trooper. We hiked over a mile to get to the waterfall, she braved a grassy edged stream to get to the spot (She's terrified of snakes), and the first thing out of her mouth when I would give up on a shot was, "Did you get what you wanted? We can keep trying!"
I couldn't ask for a better attitude or cuter model.