Forums > General Industry > Daring to be nude in Los Angeles.

Photographer

Gary Blanchette

Posts: 5130

Irvine, California, US

So I get an email from a fellow photographer that I have been talking with about shooting nude in public. With the laws we just thought it might not be worth the risk of any fines and/or even jail time.

But then he sends me this link of a fairly long video showing models being both captured on video as well as having still shots taken as they walk around the streets of L.A..

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xv0t9p … in-la_sexy

It started to make me wonder just how crazy it would be to pull it off (we were actually thinking OC).

Have any of you MM Photographers and models ever been involved in such projects? I remember reading a post sometime back, someone saying to get in and get out quickly, but the segments in this video obviously shows everyone taking their time.

Do you think they were being daring, or did they have look outs, what?

Any thoughts?

Apr 09 13 12:06 pm Link

Photographer

ontherocks

Posts: 22992

Salem, Oregon, US

i can't speak about LA but around here people do all sorts of crazy outdoor stuff for their zivity sets. so far i haven't heard of anyone getting into trouble because of it. seems like the risk is trespassing (and outdoor sexual activity) more than nudity.

you read about public nudes in NY all the time where the photographer and model get hauled off but then released.

i just think if i showed up in the paper doing nudes at the Capitol that might put a crimp in my senior portrait business. or maybe it would encourage their moms to hire me for boudoir. lol.

Apr 09 13 12:09 pm Link

Photographer

Christopher Hartman

Posts: 54153

Buena Park, California, US

Gary Blanchette wrote:
So I get an email from a fellow photographer that I have been talking with about shooting nude in public. With the laws we just thought it might not be worth the risk of any fines and/or even jail time.

But then he sends me this link of a fairly long video showing models being both captured on video as well as having still shots taken as they walk around the streets of L.A..

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xv0t9p … in-la_sexy

It started to make me wonder just how crazy it would be to pull it off (we were actually thinking OC).

Have any of you MM Photographers and models ever been involved in such projects? I remember reading a post sometime back, someone saying to get in and get out quickly, but the segments in this video obviously shows everyone taking their time.

Do you think they were being daring, or did they have look outs, what?

Any thoughts?

Proper permits will allow for just about anything.

Apr 09 13 12:21 pm Link

Photographer

Gary Blanchette

Posts: 5130

Irvine, California, US

Christopher Hartman wrote:
Proper permits will allow for just about anything.

Hey Chris! Long time no see. How has life been? I rarely stop by Pbase.

Apr 09 13 12:44 pm Link

Photographer

Select Models

Posts: 36284

Rancho Cucamonga, California, US

Daring to be nude in Los Angeles.

Not me... no way in Hell... an easy way to fuckup your future with a criminal record and a sure fire way to get your name listed on some sex offender website.  And if you don't have a permit to exhale, blink your eyes and sneeze while naked, you'll be paying healthy no permit fines too... hmm   Definitely NOT worth the risk... wink

Apr 09 13 01:02 pm Link

Photographer

Good Egg Productions

Posts: 16074

Orlando, Florida, US

ontherocks wrote:
i can't speak about LA but around here people do all sorts of crazy outdoor stuff for their zivity sets. so far i haven't heard of anyone getting into trouble because of it. seems like the risk is trespassing (and outdoor sexual activity) more than nudity.

you read about public nudes in NY all the time where the photographer and model get hauled off but then released.

i just think if i showed up in the paper doing nudes at the Capitol that might put a crimp in my senior portrait business. or maybe it would encourage their moms to hire me for boudoir. lol.

Then why did you speak?

The OP SPECIFICALLY asked about LA and OC.  What happens around your neck of the woods is not useful.

My suggestion, try to find a private residence or apartment building that you have roof access to and shoot with L.A. elements in the background.

Apr 09 13 01:08 pm Link

Model

NicoleNudes

Posts: 3963

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

I watched the first two videos.

They never really stopped, the girls were walking around the entire time. Save of when the one girl bought a magazine and the other one a drink in a store.

That wouldn't have been long enough for someone to call the cops, complain and then have them show up and arrest the model and photographers.

Apr 09 13 01:09 pm Link

Photographer

ontherocks

Posts: 22992

Salem, Oregon, US

dp

Apr 09 13 02:11 pm Link

Photographer

ontherocks

Posts: 22992

Salem, Oregon, US

compared to california (i lived there for 26 years) this area is like the bible belt. extremely conservative. hasn't progressed much since 1850. yet photographers seem to get away with outdoor nudes no problem. just an observation.

also, my belief is that forums serve a purpose beyond answering the specific question asked by an OP. there is often a more generalized discussion around the topic that can be of interest to forum members (or at least is of interest to me).

but you are correct in that i've never marched a nude llama down the streets of LA so i can't comment specifically on what would happen in that case. if i were going to do it i imagine i would see if i could get permission (and i'm aware of photographers around here who have done just that).

Good Egg Productions wrote:
The OP SPECIFICALLY asked about LA and OC.  What happens around your neck of the woods is not useful.

Apr 09 13 02:14 pm Link

Photographer

Christopher Hartman

Posts: 54153

Buena Park, California, US

Gary Blanchette wrote:

Hey Chris! Long time no see. How has life been? I rarely stop by Pbase.

I haven't posted anything new to PBase in a long time.

My D300 and 17-15 f/2.8 was stolen about 3 weeks ago.  I wasn't shooting much and now I'm doing even less of it.

Apr 09 13 03:36 pm Link

Photographer

Charlie-CNP

Posts: 2644

New York, New York, US

I don't know about LA, but in NYC, both men and women are allowed to be topless within city limits. I know that there are a few daring souls that have done full nudes in various spots in the city, but its probably a do at your own risk thing. *shrugs*

Apr 09 13 03:47 pm Link

Photographer

Gary Blanchette

Posts: 5130

Irvine, California, US

Christopher Hartman wrote:

I haven't posted anything new to PBase in a long time.

My D300 and 17-15 f/2.8 was stolen about 3 weeks ago.  I wasn't shooting much and now I'm doing even less of it.

Damn, I'm sorry to hear that.

Apr 09 13 05:01 pm Link

Photographer

ms-photo

Posts: 536

Portland, Oregon, US

ontherocks wrote:
i can't speak about LA but around here people do all sorts of crazy outdoor stuff for their zivity sets. so far i haven't heard of anyone getting into trouble because of it. seems like the risk is trespassing (and outdoor sexual activity) more than nudity.

The laws in California are pretty vague.  Penal Code 314 PC states that you exposed your genitals in public for the purpose of sexually gratifying yourself or someone else.  If they are filming this stuff for a pay website, I think it would probably count.  If you are convicted of this in California you have to register as a sex offender for life.

ontherocks wrote:
you read about public nudes in NY all the time where the photographer and model get hauled off but then released.

If you are talking about Spencer Tunick, he got all the proper permits for his big Times Square shoot, the cops showed up and arrested him anyway.  He sued the city for violating his First Amendment rights and won.

ontherocks wrote:
i just think if i showed up in the paper doing nudes at the Capitol that might put a crimp in my senior portrait business. or maybe it would encourage their moms to hire me for boudoir. lol.

Nude photography is legal most places in Oregon as long as there is no sexual activity.

I doubt those people filming in LA got permits.  They are probably relying on LA being crazy and "anything goes" there.  If the cops showed up they could have some big problems though.

LA is more conservative about this stuff than SF, which only recently passed a law banning public nudity except during certain special occasions.

Apr 09 13 05:21 pm Link

Photographer

ms-photo

Posts: 536

Portland, Oregon, US

ontherocks wrote:
compared to california (i lived there for 26 years) this area is like the bible belt. extremely conservative. hasn't progressed much since 1850. yet photographers seem to get away with outdoor nudes no problem. just an observation.

That's because it's legal in Oregon but not in California.

Apr 09 13 05:24 pm Link

Photographer

Cherrystone

Posts: 37142

Columbus, Ohio, US

ontherocks wrote:
i can't speak about LA but around here people do all sorts of crazy outdoor stuff for their zivity sets. so far i haven't heard of anyone getting into trouble because of it. seems like the risk is trespassing (and outdoor sexual activity) more than nudity.

How is walking down the sidewalk trespassing?

Apr 09 13 05:26 pm Link

Photographer

Carle Photography

Posts: 9227

Oakland, California, US

I've been photographed naked in at least 6 or more major cities.

Outside, in the daylight, many times...

Only one ticket so far. Brooklyn NY, 125.00

Get in, get the shot, get out, cash the check.

Apr 09 13 05:31 pm Link

Photographer

Cherrystone

Posts: 37142

Columbus, Ohio, US

Death of Field wrote:
I've been photographed naked in at least 6 7 or more major cities.

Fixed. big_smile

Apr 09 13 05:33 pm Link

Photographer

ms-photo

Posts: 536

Portland, Oregon, US

Gary Blanchette wrote:
So I get an email from a fellow photographer that I have been talking with about shooting nude in public. With the laws we just thought it might not be worth the risk of any fines and/or even jail time.

Probably not a good idea in California.  Here are some good summaries of the law:

http://www.ahmedandsukaram.com/Practice … posure.asp

http://www.johnwhilllaw.com/lawyer-atto … 92127.html

There is a lot open to the judge's interpretation.  What was the purpose of exposing genitals in public?  Was it to sexually arouse anyone?  If someone is taking video of the event for a pay website, there is a pretty good argument the purpose is for sexual arousal.

Apr 09 13 05:34 pm Link

Photographer

ms-photo

Posts: 536

Portland, Oregon, US

Cherrystone wrote:

How is walking down the sidewalk trespassing?

If you are on public property, you'd more likely to be charged with causing a public disturbance, filming without a permit, etc.

Apr 09 13 05:36 pm Link

Photographer

Carle Photography

Posts: 9227

Oakland, California, US

Death of Field wrote:
I've been photographed naked in at least 6 7 or more major cities.

Cherrystone wrote:
Fixed. big_smile

Does Ohio HAVE a major city?
big_smile
I had already counted San Francisco...

Some day I'll have to go through all the images and count them all up....

Apr 09 13 05:36 pm Link

guide forum

Photographer

GPS Studio Services

Posts: 37912

San Francisco, California, US

ontherocks wrote:
i can't speak about LA but around here people do all sorts of crazy outdoor stuff for their zivity sets. so far i haven't heard of anyone getting into trouble because of it. seems like the risk is trespassing (and outdoor sexual activity) more than nudity.

ms-photo wrote:
The laws in California are pretty vague.  Penal Code 314 PC states that you exposed your genitals in public for the purpose of sexually gratifying yourself or someone else.  If they are filming this stuff for a pay website, I think it would probably count.  If you are convicted of this in California you have to register as a sex offender for life.

The law in California isn't vague at all.  We have a statewide indecency statute, which is what you are referring to.  Simple, non-sexual nudity, in public, isn't illegal in the state.  The problem is that many cities and counties have their own public nudity statutes.  They are not vague at all.

LA and LA county both have explicit public nudity statutes.  It is, most definitely, illegal to walk around the streets nude in LA.  You can be topless and in a thong in SF (It was nude until two months ago), you can be nude in Santa Cruz, but not in LA.

LA also requires a permit to shoot in public places.  You can certainly get a permit to do a shoot as we saw.  Absent a permit, you risk having the model get cited for public nudity and the photographer for not having a permit.  LA can even cite you after the fact (which they will do).

I would be very gunshy, particularly as a model, to do something that explicit in LA.  You will probably not get caught, but if you do, you won't be happy.  There is a model on this site that likes to show off the citation she got in LA for public nudity.

Apr 09 13 05:39 pm Link

Photographer

Carle Photography

Posts: 9227

Oakland, California, US

ms-photo wrote:

Probably not a good idea in California.  Here are some good summaries of the law:

http://www.ahmedandsukaram.com/Practice … posure.asp

http://www.johnwhilllaw.com/lawyer-atto … 92127.html

There is a lot open to the judge's interpretation.  What was the purpose of exposing genitals in public?  Was it to sexually arouse anyone?  If someone is taking video of the event for a pay website, there is a pretty good argument the purpose is for sexual arousal.

Very few people give a shit about it out here.

There is a big law change in SF right now that is causing havoc, but for the most part. Seeing a naked chick, is just another Tuesday.


Most of those videos and such might seem like they take a long while, but in a major city where it can take 30 minutes for the cops to show up to an armed robbery....

Although, we did have a naked man dancing in the street last year, cops arrived in ten minutes. Oakland is a great place.

Apr 09 13 05:41 pm Link

Photographer

Greg Kolack

Posts: 17916

Downers Grove, Illinois, US

A couple of years ago I spent the summer with a model doing nude shoots all over Chicago - I think we hit about 40 locations. Some generic, some very, very recognizable. We got to the locations just as the sun was coming up (usually around 6:00 am) and shot till about 8:00 am.

We were in and out of each spot in about a minute.

It was a great project and we really feel like we accomplished something amazing.

Apr 09 13 05:47 pm Link

Photographer

Select Models

Posts: 36284

Rancho Cucamonga, California, US

ms-photo wrote:
LA is more conservative about this stuff than SF, which only recently passed a law banning public nudity except during certain special occasions.

Hmmmmm... so what kind of 'special occasions' would those be?... 'Birthday Suit Parades'?... lol

Apr 09 13 05:48 pm Link

Photographer

ms-photo

Posts: 536

Portland, Oregon, US

GPS Studio Services wrote:
The law in California isn't vague at all.  We have a statewide indecency statute, which is what you are referring to.  Simple, non-sexual nudity, in public, isn't illegal in the state.  The problem is that many cities and counties have their own public nudity statutes.  They are not vague at all.

The laws are vague in that the "intent" is open to interpretation by police, judges, etc.  It's not so much the act itself that would be prosecuted, but the "thoughtcrime" behind it.

Apr 09 13 05:51 pm Link

Photographer

ms-photo

Posts: 536

Portland, Oregon, US

Select Models wrote:

Hmmmmm... so what kind of 'special occasions' would those be?... 'Birthday Suit Parades'?... lol

Bay to Breakers
Folsom Street Fair
SF Pride Parade
World Nude Bike Ride
etc.

Apr 09 13 05:52 pm Link

Photographer

Cherrystone

Posts: 37142

Columbus, Ohio, US

Death of Field wrote:

Does Ohio HAVE a major city?
big_smile
I had already counted San Francisco...

Some day I'll have to go through all the images and count them all up....

Of course there is......we have tornados, ya gotta have a major city to get tornados. Come back during spring. big_smile

Apr 09 13 05:58 pm Link

guide forum

Photographer

GPS Studio Services

Posts: 37912

San Francisco, California, US

GPS Studio Services wrote:
The law in California isn't vague at all.  We have a statewide indecency statute, which is what you are referring to.  Simple, non-sexual nudity, in public, isn't illegal in the state.  The problem is that many cities and counties have their own public nudity statutes.  They are not vague at all.

ms-photo wrote:
The laws are vague in that the "intent" is open to interpretation by police, judges, etc.  It's not so much the act itself that would be prosecuted, but the "thoughtcrime" behind it.

The answer is that, in those cities/counties that don't have public nudity ordinances, people just don't get prosecuted.  Whether you consider it vague or not, in the communities where they don't have their own ordinances, they just don't care.

If, on the other hand, someone masturbates in the street, they do.  You really don't hear about nudity arrests under the state law (local ordinances are a different matter).

Apr 09 13 08:34 pm Link

Photographer

Select Models

Posts: 36284

Rancho Cucamonga, California, US

Cherrystone wrote:
Of course there is......we have tornados,

No better excuse for public nudity there.  In those kinda high winds, clothes can easily get blow off... yikes... lol

Apr 09 13 11:25 pm Link

Photographer

Anthony Altamore

Posts: 58

Chicago, Illinois, US

Those videos clearly seem to be guerilla-style shoots, with the way they're running around.  Since it was Hollywood Blvd, I'm not surprised people were more entertained than offended.  It's also hilariously Amateur Hour, because the dude shooting the video is in the background of every frame.  But I digress...

The common perception is you can usually get away with shooting in LA as long as your crew is small enough, but actually it's pretty hit-or-miss.  I've worked with large crews and motorhomes on the streets of downtown in the middle of the night and cops drove by without a word (no permit).  But with a crew of 4 shooting on Rodeo Drive, we got kicked out in five minutes.  It all depends where and what time, what you're shooting, and how much attention it's drawing. 

But if the cops happen to be driving by and see a nude model on the street, I can guarantee they would stop (at first just to oggle themselves) and probably issue some citations (to justify their oggling, cops are like that).  Bottom line is you can get away with it, but you have to know you're taking a risk.

Apr 12 13 06:57 pm Link

Photographer

NothingIsRealButTheGirl

Posts: 34811

Los Angeles, California, US

Anthony Altamore wrote:
Those videos clearly seem to be guerilla-style shoots

Not always.

http://natalieaddams.deviantart.com/art … -108482162

(you'll need a dA account to see this particular image, but you can find others if you search)

Apr 12 13 07:00 pm Link

Photographer

Anthony Altamore

Posts: 58

Chicago, Illinois, US

The Space Cowboy wrote:

Not always.

I was just talking about the specific video mentioned in OP, and of that only the first 5 minutes (I got bored).

Apr 12 13 07:06 pm Link

Photographer

NothingIsRealButTheGirl

Posts: 34811

Los Angeles, California, US

Anthony Altamore wrote:

I was just talking about the specific video mentioned in OP, and of that only the first 5 minutes (I got bored).

I know, but it's all part of the same series called 'Nude in LA'

Apr 12 13 07:47 pm Link

Photographer

Dee EN

Posts: 420

Los Angeles, California, US

http://www.modelmayhem.com/portfolio/pic/33042959 +18


The above image is in Los Angeles, this would be the 7th street bridge over the LA river

Sep 07 13 04:38 am Link

Photographer

Art Silva

Posts: 9626

Santa Barbara, California, US

I have not viewed the video link since I am in a crowded public coffee house right now but yes, I have done several nude photoshoots in and around LA and yes it is daring and yes we had to keep an eye out.

Planning, location and timing is everything when it comes to public nudes.

Sep 07 13 10:09 am Link

Photographer

Looknsee Photography

Posts: 22439

Portland, Oregon, US

Such an arrangement would not be comfortable for me.

One note, however, use American models -- a US citizen might get fined; a foreign model might get deported, never to return.

Sep 07 13 10:41 am Link

Photographer

Jerry Nemeth

Posts: 28860

Dearborn, Michigan, US

Carle Photography wrote:
I've been photographed naked in at least 6 or more major cities.

Outside, in the daylight, many times...

Only one ticket so far. Brooklyn NY, 125.00

Get in, get the shot, get out, cash the check.

I've seen some of the photos from San Francisco.    smile

Sep 07 13 05:19 pm Link

Photographer

T-D-L

Posts: 10303

Los Angeles, California, US

Without permits to do such a thing (and I don't know how difficult that'd be to require...), I'd never shoot in the midst of the public.  I've shot nudes in public places (beaches, parks, apartment buildings, rooftops, etc)....but always away from prying eyes.  That whole "sex offender" possibility isn't worth the trouble if you want to be daring.

Sep 07 13 06:16 pm Link

Photographer

GER Photography

Posts: 8306

Imperial, California, US

There's some saying like,"When danger is seconds away, the police are only minutes away!"

Sep 07 13 06:28 pm Link

Photographer

Amazing Productions

Posts: 557

Prague, Prague, Czech Republic

Gary Blanchette wrote:
So I get an email from a fellow photographer that I have been talking with about shooting nude in public. With the laws we just thought it might not be worth the risk of any fines and/or even jail time.

Any thoughts?

Very foolish for the model to accept that job.

It's easy for the producers to do a public nude photoshoot because the person taking most of the risk is the model. She is the one that could get charged with public indecency or whatever the cops can charge her with.

I know a model/actress who bared her breasts once at a city council meeting to protest not being allowed to be topless at the beach. I think it was Redondo Beach. Anyone, it was basically a publicity stunt dreamed up by some Hollywood publicist to get on the evening news, which it did.

The cops told her if she didn't put her top on on she would be charged with some kind of crime which, if convicted, would require her to register as sex offender.

That put the fear of the law in her. She didn't do it again, even though the publicist wanted her to do more publicity stunts like that.

In Puritan America, I would not put a model in that kind of risk.

Sep 08 13 04:31 am Link