Ahhh, the portrait. It is the most intimate experience for both artist and subject. I always feel an enormous privilege and sense of responsibility when someone allows me to really look at them. To probe around for that inner fire and vulnerability that makes them remarkably human, and remarkably beautiful.
These portraits were taken in my studio with strobes, and are presented pretty much straight out of the camera. I limit photo retouching to fixing color cast and contrast, masking the unexpected blemish, or removing lint that didn't get picked up during the styling. My goal is to create beautiful light in the studio that illuminates a subject's best features and personality during the shoot, rather than spending hours retouching images in Lightroom or Photoshop afterwards. The more retouching, the less truthful the image.
Each of these images took about 45 minutes to capture. The first 15 minutes are about getting comfortable with the environment. The next 15 are about sampling a variety of moods and postures. The last 15 are about freedom and fun—going where the energy takes us. It is usually when things are beginning to wrap that subjects really let their guard down. This is also when we tend to get some of the best, most accessible images—because there's nothing left to lose.