Image credits: All photographs copyright Greg Gorman and used with express permission from COOPH.


Our friends at COOPH—the cooperative that brings you killer photography tips, tricks & ideas like these from earlier this year—recently got the chance to work with world-famous photographer Greg Gorman and tackle a particularly sultry subject for their newest video: nude photography.

Nude photography is a tricky subject because the line between art and porn is precariously easy to cross if you don’t know what you’re doing. Mr. Gorman, with his decades of experience and undeniable skill behind the camera, knows how to stay on the appropriate side of that line and capture beautiful shots in the process.

Working with the stunning Nirmala, in the video below Gorman shares 12 solid tips that range from the practical to the psychological; tips that will help you navigate this exciting, daunting subject with grace.

Click play to see them for yourself, and then scroll down to see all the final shots:

You should really watch the video, but if you want a basic overview, the tips are as follows:

1. Connect with your model
2. Oil up (A slight glisten to the skin enhances the shape and form)
3. Walk around the model and hunting for the best angle
4. Use a reflector to beam light onto your model
5. Not worrying about low-light situation and bumping up your ISO
6. Be confident and directing clearly—it’s important to keep looking through the lens whilst doing this to maintain your POV & angle
7. Involve your model, and showing them the results
8. Use windows for hard light and nice contrast
9. Use props like mirrors and curtains
10. Be open to change from your original ideas
11. Use negative space in your composition
12. Head outside for magic hour

Keeping these tips in mind, you can begin to work your way towards capturing images like Gorman does. Images like these (NSFW):

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To see more from Mr. Gorman, be sure to check out his website or sign up for one of his workshops—it goes without saying that he knows what he’s doing and could probably teach any one of us a thing of two… hundred.

And if you want to learn more about or join the Cooperative of Photography (COOPH), head over to their website, like them on Facebook, or pay them a visit on Instagram and Twitter.