One of the most exciting projects I’ve undertaken in several years is finally becoming a reality.

It’s a an online gallery of uncensored photographs from my photo shoots all over the world. This subscribers-only website will be called “Simonson On Location.”

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This project was jump-started by a comment my webmaster, Mitch, made to me a couple of months ago.

Mitch and I have worked together for several years now. Mitch isn’t just a great web guy, he’s also an invaluable sounding board and idea man. In one of our recent meetings, he said, “You know, Douglas, it might be time to take another look at doing that subscriptions site.”

This was an idea we had batted around for years: a subscriptions-only website which would allow my collectors to view the uncensored images from my photoshoots.

I’ve been doing male-nude photo shoots for over 30 years now. Most of those materials have never been seen by anyone but myself, and occasionally my assistants. (As a reader of this blog, you have probably seen a select few of these images—in censored form—in my “Step-by-Step in the Studio” entries. But 99.9% of them have never been shown.)

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Here I am at a photo shoot in Rio de Janeiro. Unlike this image, photographs on the new website will be uncensored.

These images, as much as my drawings and paintings, are documents of my life as a photographer and artist. And for many reasons—not least the fact that I’ve just turned 60, and these days I have a broader perspective on a lot of things—the time seems right to share this part of my life.

So when Mitch brought up the subject of a subscriptions site, I got excited. It seemed like now, the time was finally right!

So I said YES, let’s do it. And we plunged in. Mitch started working on all the back-end stuff it takes to set up a subscription website (and there are a lot of details involved!). And I started the process of going through my photographs.

That’s when I really started to grasp the enormity of the task. We’re talking about thousands of photographs, each of which need to be vetted, sorted, tweaked for image quality, classified, numbered, and put in a database (because I wanted my collectors to be able to buy any of the images as a photographic print).

Plus I would need to write the story of each model and each photoshoot.

There was a lot to do. I tried not to think about how much work it was going to be to go into Photoshop and tweak and prepare each image for online presentation. But then, at exactly the right time, a friend of mine who runs a Hawaii stock-photography website told me about something that could cut my workload dramatically: Adobe Lightroom.

I got the software and began learning it and found that I really liked it. So as I started actually going through my photo archives, my excitement about the project was enhanced by my new streamlined work flow.

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Here I am in my studio-office using Adobe Lightroom to review photos for the new website.

This is a lot of work, but it’s also a lot of fun. Going through photoshoots from years past is bringing back a lot of memories, and as I sift through the individual photographs I’m seeing them through new eyes as I think about how much fun it will be to share entire photo shoots with my collectors online.

Plus I’m realizing how many really beautiful images were buried in the photo vaults, so to speak. Now people are finally going to be able to see and enjoy them!

In my next entry I’ll share some images of what the new website will look like.

Comments
  1. Roy Adcock says:

    Great idea!

  2. Pete says:

    Great idea! I can hardly wait!

  3. Peter Esser says:

    Sounds great

  4. Rémi Vachon says:

    What a good idee, I really want to acced those galery
    Thanks
    Let me know when it is gonna be possible

  5. Rodney says:

    I can’t wait Douglas your whole process is such an inspiration and this ‘behind the scenes’ peek is going to have everyone’s tongue salivating.

    Best of luck..

  6. Gregg says:

    Sign me up….a great idea.

  7. Jrry Travis says:

    What a concept

  8. Ron and Dick says:

    Doug

    Wonderful idea. If you remember, we met you at your home in the mid 90’s – we purchased 5 of your beautiful pieces. They have been beautifully framed and have hung in our home all these years. We have recieved many many compliments on your work. You are truly a great artist and we’d love to see the work that goes into the finished product.

  9. Vic Stap.... says:

    I too, am quite exited to read about your site in the making. We equally enjoy two of your masterpieces we bought at your home in 97 coming from Hong Kong. Hawaii was a 1st stop on trip around the world. They are timeless!
    Especially ours, the black model on the flower throw reflecting so beautifully the colors on his ivory skin while crouching into the club chair made numerous impacts when I hang it one year later in South Africa. And the Asian man doing his morning Tai Chi in all his nude glory. They are striking yet not offending. Who knew I was going to move there.
    May I suggest a “special” member fee for existing clients. Let us hope the economy will turn to allow us to purchase for pleasurable Art again.
    May this endeavor bring you the best of a new type of digital success.
    Love & Mahalo from Vancouver Canada.

  10. Norm says:

    Wow thats terrific…cant wait!

  11. louis villiers says:

    WONDERFUL IDEA, GREETINGS, LUOIS

  12. Alan says:

    I’m very excited about the new website. Can wait!!!!

  13. John says:

    As I suggested to you before Douglas, anyway of getting the “unfocused” focused would only increase your income and the satisfaction of your purchasers once they’ve decided on a peice. Squinting one’s eyes doesn’t do justice to your works. You’ve finally found a way! Congratulations!

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