Fine Art Portrait & Figure Styles

My signature approaches for creative people photography
A portrait can be any artistic representation of a person in which the face and its expression is predominant -- with an intent to display the likeness, personality, individuality, and even mood of that person. I use the term 'figure' for work that uses some or all of the human form to create a visual story without emphasizing the face or identity (whether actually anonymous or not). My signature styles below can be used for either.

What elevates these to 'fine art' approaches, setting them apart from general photography? It's subjective but for me the distinction means an image required additional levels of design, skill, creativity, and/or dedicated effort to make a unique statement. All images I make within any of these styles have certain traits common to the style, but the approaches are not formulaic. Each session and image involves has unique planning and execution, and I aim for results that are likewise unique but timeless.

So if you are looking for a soulful, intimate portrait or to create expressive art with your body, let's discuss your ideas. I work to combine classical training, contemporary influences, and a collaborative design approach for personalized portraiture and fine art nudes. I designed these approaches to be adaptable: they work well for children and/or adult subjects, for portraying an individual and/or a relationship, and for imagery that is very literal or abstract or something in between.

NEW Signature Style


"Let us distill the subject's form and individuality to their essence. Veils and distractions are left behind, replaced with light so precise that it wraps like a second skin."
The penumbra is the zone between perfect light and perfect shadow, and it is this imperfect shadow I use to great beautiful lighting. My challenge and strict rule for you in this style is to create an expressive visual story of identity, form, and/or activity with no more than three recognizable detail elements besides the subject(s) -- Penumbra+3. Doing this right is not as easy as it may seem. It requires discipline to eliminate anything that might distract, so that without the distortions of fashion or gimmicks it becomes only about the baring of quintessential persona and form in a beautifully honest way. Nuances of light and shadow, flesh and bone, pose and expression -- usually rendered in black and white or toned monochrome. People find the creation process expressive and enriching, and the results stunning. For details and FAQs including what counts toward the 3 elements, see the PRINTABLE GUIDELINE.
-- Best for: baby, child, adult portrait; relationships such as parent-child; figurative art
-- Planning/Prep Complexity: LOW
-- Logistical Complexity: MEDIUM (usually photographed indoors home or studio)

NatureBound -- "We swim in technology, both wonderful and horrific. But is that what defines us? Makes us human? No. We are made from the stuff of nature, tied to it even as we try to defy it. It is my goal with this style to design images showing the elemental connection between individual and nature, and how we humans intertwine with it."
-- Best for: portraiture for children/adults or figurative art emphasizing natural elements
-- Variations: celebration of connections to natural settings (forest, meadow, river, etc) or more specific elements (stone, trees, water, earth, etc) (ask about discount for helping me experiment and produce additional portfolio variations on this theme)
-- Planning/Prep Complexity: MEDIUM (identify locations, concept development & prep)
-- Logistical Complexity: MEDIUM to HIGH (usually photographed in outdoor setting)

image Classicality -- "Begin with study of classical painters such as Rembrandt and Adolphe William Bouguereau, and take in the inspiration of their ability to render light and color on canvas. Add the influences of masters in available light photography such as David Hamilton. Combine such elements--sometimes for subtle influence on an otherwise traditional portrait, sometimes for a painterly scene or tableau in rich colors and tones."
-- Best for: timeless classical portraiture for children or adults; romantic portraits or nudes
-- Planning/Prep Complexity: LOW to MEDIUM depending on costuming, concept etc
-- Logistical Complexity: MEDIUM-HIGH (photographed in home, studio, or location)

Visit Public Portrait/Figure Gallery
(This gallery contains no explicit nudity; see below for additional portfolio area)

About Figure & Fine Art Nude

Limitless creative potential of the human figure as critical accent or entire focus of the image.
image It is a misconception that only professional models can successfully create figurative art. I do sometimes work with experienced models, but I've collaborated with portrait clients, beginner models, and 'regular people' too. Whether timid or bold, we almost always manage to create beautiful, interesting, and expressive work -- whether the goal is personal art, a specific project, or just a creative experiment. I have been told by subjects/models of just about every age and personality type that they enjoyed the process and result, finding it non-creepy and sometimes surprisingly therapeutic as a boost to expression and self-esteem. Have questions or an idea for a potential creative project? Contact me for a non-judmental discussion and honest appraisal of what may be feasible. Bring specific ideas, or just a concept for me to interpret!

Some figurative art images (i.e. non-portrait) are included in the main gallery linked above, images containing artistic nudity are in a restricted portfolio - see this link for more info.
Info / Access To Restricted Portfolio