Keira In The Shower

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Page created November 25, 2009
Sitting date:  July 22, 2009




I love working in my shower & steam room, but it's a big challenge.  Although both the shower & steam room are large, as far as showers & steam rooms go, space is a bit cramped, especially when you try to add lights..  Additionally, electronics & water don't mix, and setting up the lighting so that it is both interesting & safe is tricky.  But it can be arranged.

So, here we are in the steam room.  The steam room door is tightly closed -- normally, that's enough to keep the steam in the steam room.  The door is tempered glass, and today, we have the light just outside the door, pointing into the steam room.  It's tricky for me to squeeze into the steam room, leaving the lights appropriately aimed (I'm not as svelte as I used to be), but as you can see, we manage.

Keira is sitting on the steam room bench, and I'm at the other end, only 6-7 feet away.  I'm using a wide angle lens, but distortions are minimized because the camera axis is parallel to the floor & perpendicular to that back wall.

It's always good to start this way.  Once the model gets wet, she'll stay wet for the rest of the sitting.  











Keira manages to ooze confidence.  Sometimes I forget that she's nude.

We move off the bench & photograph on the floor in front of the bench.  Because the light is so close (on the other side of the steam room door), the little change in position makes a significant change in the lighting.  So, before we get Keira wet, we play on the floor.




We are still in the steam room -- that's the glass door behind Keira.  We start to get Keira wet, and the steam room immediately does what it is designed to do -- it retains steam.  That light, and the diffusion cased by the steam, give this photo an ethereal feel that I like.  Of course, my eyesight is getting fuzzy in my old age, so I don't mind the haze.  

I should mention that we aren't really using the steam generator -- that would generate so much steam that we'd wouldn't be able to see Keira at all.  In fact, when I use the steam generator, the temperature can go up to 120.  Here, all the steam is being generated by running the hot water.

It's a problem -- I hate it when my lens steam up, and if I wipe the steam away, it's back in a second.  So, we make some pictures, but when it really gets steamy in the steam room, I leave & photograph Keira through the glass wall.  But before that, we work together, with both of us in the steam room.















Much as I'd like to, I just can't stay in the steam room with Keira -- I want to get her really wet, but to do so means that there's a lot of steam in the air, and that steam condenses on the camera.  It's an easy problem to solve -- I photograph Keira through the glass wall of the steam room, leaving her in there with the hot water running. 

When we get images like this one, with her ribs tapering to her waist, with her excellent muscle definition, and with her wide stance, Keira looks powerful to me.  I like this a lot.  

This setup does have its challenges:

  • That door creates a tight seal when it is closed.  That, and when the hot water is running, means that the model can't really hear me & vice versa.
  • While the strobe light is powerful when it fires, the modeling light isn't all that powerful, which often challenges the camera's autofocus.

Still, when it's working, we can produce some interesting images.  Keira especially called these images "fun".




Interesting things happen when the model presses herself up against the glass wall of the steam room.

Here's an observation:  when I photographed Carlotta in January, 2008, she was in the exact same spot...

... but the positioning of the light was different.  The door and the glass wall to the steam room are side by side.  For the picture of Carlotta, above, the light was a large diffused reflector positioned directly above the camera position.  For the pictures here of Keira, the light was positioned on the other side of the steam room door (to the right of the camera position).  The Carlotta setup highlights the condensation on the inside of the glass wall -- the Keira setup, not so much.  Overall, I think I like the light on Keira better -- the Carlotta light was too bright at the top of the image, and the condensation drops on the glass obscure her figure a little too much.  But then again, Carlotta had a lot of fun leaving finger trails on the glass.











Here's something I learned:  when we first started working on this setup, my camera had lots of problem focusing on Keira.  At that time, all the bathroom lights were off, and the scene was lit only by the strobe's modeling lights, which were just too dim.

All the lights in my house are on dimmers, so I turned on the steam room lights (but kept them low), and that was enough to help the camera focus.  It also brightened the white wall sculpture on the back wall.  But in general, you can't tell the steam room lights are on because the strobe is powerful enough to overpower them.

Again, I was using a pretty radical wide angle setting, minimizing distortions by keeping the camera level.  However, there is a little bit of distortion -- Keira's left arm looks super long.











I think I like this image because Keira's skin, pressed up against the glass wall, is in the rough shape of a heart.

I agree with Keira -- these "behind the glass wall" images are a lot of fun.







For reasons I barely understand, I rarely photograph a model's back.

For reasons I completely understand, I rarely talk about a model's body.

But I like this butt picture.



Keira's smiles are dazzling.

If you can draw your eyes away, you can see a indistinct bright spot in the upper left corner -- that's the steam room light that is assisting with the camera's autofocus.

It's a curse, but as a photographer, I tend to examine everything in the image, including the foggy bright spots.  That's me, lately -- I'm becoming more & more of a control freak, controlling every last pixel in the final image.








It's been a long sitting, and by all rights, we should call it quits, but I prevail on Keira for just a few more exposures.  We leave the steam room but pause in the shower.  I've always meant to explore work there, so we try a few exposures.

However, I quickly realized that I'm too beat, and I don't have the energy to develop a good (and safe) lighting setup.  

The shower does have a big honkin' shower head in the ceiling -- this shower head pumps three times the volume of water in a rainfall / deluge.  We try using that.








The only "bad" thing I've got to say about Keira is that she wore me out!  She is a terrific model, and I greatly enjoyed working with her.  Actually, the best thing I can say about any model, I will say regarding Keira:  she makes me want to be a better photographer.


(Remember -- feedback is always appreciated) 

All images (c) 2009 Looknsee Photography

Keira Grant, First Visit Out Takes

Over 130 more images from this sitting are available in the Out Takes Galleries, which are available to those who have made a donation to the upkeep of this web site.  See this FAQ question for more details.