This was the candid shot I got of Sam at the pool party that made me think Wow, this boy is model material and I hadn't even seen it 'til now.

I’ve found a new model—Sam. Over the past few months Sam and I have ended up at the same parties and we’ve become friends. After a pool party a couple of weeks ago, I was looking at the candid photos I’d taken and for the first time I realized that Sam would make a good model. I’m not used to seeing Caucasian guys that way, which probably doesn’t surprise anyone who’s paid much attention to my art over the years. But I found myself appreciating Sam’s lean, pretty body and his handsome face—and that’s not even to mention his warmth and bright, fun personality. Sam is charismatic, likeable and HOT—and I knew he’d be fun to work with. So I called him and asked him if he wanted to model. He said he’d be honored.


Sam on the loveseat in my living room.

So he came over to my new apartment in Waikiki and we did a photo shoot. I just moved into this place a month ago so this is the first photo shoot I’ve done here. I wasn’t sure how well it would work for that. We started out in the living room, which was where I thought the light would be best.


One of the first shots of Sam I shot on my lanai.

What I hadn’t thought about was the fact that because it was nearly noon, the sun was above the building and only reflected light was shining into the living room. With no direct sun hitting the model, the light tends to be soft and diffused. Which is fine when you want to flatter someone but not so great when you have someone who needs no flattering and in fact looks great with strong dramatic light striking his body.

So we went out onto my lanai, which is long and narrow and at first glance would not seem to be a great location for shooting a model. But almost immediately I realized that, at least at this time of the day, it was better than the living room. The light was more direct, and the pink of the outer walls worked well with Sam’s coloring.


Sam hanging on my front gate.

There’s a cast-iron swinging gate at the entrance of my lanai, with a piece of white plexiglas in it. It’s not very attractive and I’ll probably do something to make it look better at some point but, surprisingly, it turns to be a great backdrop and support for the model! I got some great shots of Sam leaning back and hanging on the gate.


This was shot from outside the back door of my bedroom.

There was another part of my apartment I hadn’t tried—my bedroom. Since it’s not very bright in there I didn’t think it would work very well. But, again, I was pleasantly surprised at how nice the light was. I was able to get some fairly dramatic lighting situations in there with Sam standing near the single window.

The back door of my bedroom opens onto a little landing which leads to my neighbors’ back door and the stairwell. Since the neighbors weren’t home I tried shooting Sam in that area, and with the flat-black doors and walls, got a completely different effect, and again, one that worked surprisingly well. I probably shot a couple hundred images in my bedroom and on the landing by my back door.


Through all this, one thing didn’t surprise me, and that was the fact that Sam was at ease and comfortable in front of the camera, and easy and pleasant to work with. I already knew he photographed well from shooting candids of him at all those parties…so that wasn’t a surprise either. This first shoot went so well I’ll probably shoot Sam again. In the meantime I’m very happy to have a lot of new images to work from and you’ll be seeing more of Sam in the near future.

  1. michael says:

    are you planning to release these photos? would love to see them in an ebook!

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