She Was The Nude Prop For The Harley Davidson
Usually the Harley Davidson bike is the prop for our clients. For this shoot, the “client” was the bike, so to speak.
It was Steven’s bike. His baby. This amazing Harley with the incredible art enriching it. His ideas, his concept . . . yup; his baby. He was very proud of it. It was gorgeous. He had a desire, a vision for it; a dream since his Harley began to be realized.
That was to have it photographed like the centerfold in his favorite biker magazines. His real dream was to have it featured in one of those magazines. That is another story for another time.
This story is about the chrome client.
“I have never been a nude prop for a Harley Davidson before.” Laughed Jenna as she struck her pose.
Jenna thought it would be a blast, which is why she was standing nude beside this striking bike.
The camera triggered the lights for over 500 images as she created pose after pose. She was so fluid, so full of expressions. Jenna had a ball being the nude prop.
Steven; meanwhile was a man in heaven. Watching the shoot unfold, making suggestions from the many magazine ideas that had fueled this bucket list shoot. He was also a busy man, polishing up the bike each time Jenna leaned, sat or arched on his mobile sculpture. Then helping to reposition it in each setting.
He decided this was a lot more work than he thought it would be.
His Harley was on the move nearly as much as Jenna herself. Changing backgrounds, foregrounds, angling this way and that. A bike that big, in the small studio space we had, or rather the space the bike made small, was not easy to keep moving around.
Outdoors the chrome on a Harley Davidson is easy to photograph, angled to the heavens it just sees sky. In my studio the rounded chrome became mirrors that saw every corner of my studio. We created a wall of white to make it sparkle and my studio to disappear.
It is pretty easy to spot a bike lover; it’s a culture, an appreciation of the machine as art. Bikers always see the bike first, the amazing woman second. For everyone else, it is the charming woman that captivates them.
Usually it is the big bike that is the prop, the element that gives the image flavor or character, mood if you will. We can dress up the setting for glamour or build a back ally set to go for a spice of danger. Lately we have more bikes coming in as the subject, sometimes before they are even driven a mile.
The saddest was a custom bike, took a few years to slowly build, a week after it’s photo shoot, it all but disintegrated from a collision. Or the Captain America bike that was stolen weeks after the showcase shoot, the thief called up the distraught owner to let him listen the engines rev one last time before it was gone. Not sure if that was being mean or giving closure.
One of the best was the Dolphin bike, as the builder called her. I photographed it for hours, with a great fun loving prop. After the shoot it went on to win armfuls awards and trophies.
For Jenna, becoming the counter point to this stunning bike was exciting. She made the bike look even better. Some images just begged for Photoshop style painting. There is just so much you can do.
I always have different Harley Davidson in the Studio for women, and the odd guy (that is odd as in not common rather than strange.) It is always a joy though, when a bike arrives as the client.