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What about tattoos?
Old 07-25-2006, 03:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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It is not a new trend, but it seems that every other model has some sort of body art. So my question is this; how do you deal with it?

Sometimes I don't really care, but mostly, I find it distracting. I have been in shoots where I have asked the model to move, or in pre-PS days, cover their ink with make-up. Some get offended, most don't care. If you are going to clone stamp it out later, do you tell the model up front or not?

Looking forward to everyone's thoughts.

Paul
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Re: What about tattoos?
Old 07-25-2006, 04:04 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Isn't the model the whole package - tats, body jewelry, hair color, etc? If you want a model for a particular look, I would think you'd look for someone with that look rather than having to modify things like tattoos to suit what you're doing. I don't blame the model for being offended. She offered the package she had, you accepted it, and then you have the audacity to tell her the package isn't right for you after the fact. You should have told her that before you said ok so she could walk away if she wanted and you could then find someone that fit your needs better.
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Re: What about tattoos?
Old 07-25-2006, 04:48 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I tend to highlight the models attributes, including tattoos.

I have been asked by a model to blend out a tattoo (Urgently) after a shot was published on a bar's web site. Seems she didn't want her family to see it.
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Re: What about tattoos?
Old 07-27-2006, 01:30 PM   #4 (permalink)
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The Goldy, what happens if the model has EVERYTHING but has screwed it up by getting inked? What if the model AND the photographer are both new to everything and the photographer doesn't have the luxury of working with just anyone and therefore simply can't get a model with a whoel working package?

Any model who gets offended for a photographer wanting to cover up or hide a tattoo should just quit while they're ahead. If anything, the models should be embarrassed that they destroyed their canvas and therefore limited their usefullness to many photography projects.

Now I know, people do stupid things when they're young or drunk. But seriously, if a woman has any sort of interest in being a model she simply should not get inked up. It only damages her versatility and will prevent her from getting work at times.
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Re: What about tattoos?
Old 07-27-2006, 01:51 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DWilson
The Goldy, what happens if the model has EVERYTHING but has screwed it up by getting inked? What if the model AND the photographer are both new to everything and the photographer doesn't have the luxury of working with just anyone and therefore simply can't get a model with a whoel working package?
If the model has, as you say "screwed it up", then she doesn't have the "everything" any more. If the model is new to everything, she's lucky because she can just go to a photographer who won't mind the tattoos. There's lots of photographers out there, ready and willing to take pictures. A new photographer, I would think, takes what he/she can get and if that doesn't happen to match his/her "ideal", that's what happens when you're new since you don't usually have the luxury yet of picking and choosing.

My main point was, if you as the photographer knew going in that she has tattoos and that you didn't want them in your shots, you should tell her BEFORE you agree to snap even one picture that your intention is to remove them or whatever it is you intend to do. If, after both of you know what's up, she agrees, then she has no right to be offended when you do it. It's when you do the cover-up or whatever AFTER you've had your session with her that it's a problem, IMHO. The photographer isn't the only one with expectations about the final product, or am I totally off-base here?
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Re: What about tattoos?
Old 07-27-2006, 02:49 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGoldy
My main point was, if you as the photographer knew going in that she has tattoos and that you didn't want them in your shots, you should tell her BEFORE you agree to snap even one picture that your intention is to remove them or whatever it is you intend to do. If, after both of you know what's up, she agrees, then she has no right to be offended when you do it. It's when you do the cover-up or whatever AFTER you've had your session with her that it's a problem, IMHO. The photographer isn't the only one with expectations about the final product, or am I totally off-base here?
This all depends on the final product. A for instance; if the final product is more towards the "rough and tumble-rock n' roll" end of the spectrum, I am going to want the model with a lot of ink and maybe interesting piercings. If I am going towards a more classic glamour look, then I don't want to see the ink. And sometomes, a model you have worked with before will get a tattoo and not tell you, or is new to working with you and not mention she is inked.
That changes the equation.
Sometimes, the ink adds something, but I find that kind of rarely. For me, and again, just my opinion, I get distracted by a models tattoo. There are a number of otherwise incredible images on G1 and other sites, where the model has a tattoo and my eyes go right there, distracting from the overall aesthetic. In others you just see part of a tattoo and left asking yourself "What is wrong with this picture?"
As for the models say in the final outcome, it depends, as in all things; on context. If the model is being hired as part of clients project, then no, if it is a collaboration or part of TFP/CD then yeah.
Again, I think it depends on context, but when you see ink when you are not expecting it, how do you handle it?
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Re: What about tattoos?
Old 07-27-2006, 02:49 PM   #7 (permalink)
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You're not off base at all. I see your points and they are valid but I think that if any model has tattoos she has got to expect that there will be times where her art will be a problem. I don't think models should ever be offended that someone wants to remove the tattoos. Some shots work fine with tattoos and some don't. Often, the photographer may not even feel the tattoos are a problem until he gets around to editing. If models have Tattoos they should just expect that photos of themselves may have the tattoos edited out and should never be offended that it's happened.

I think I'm just rambling incoherantly so I'm gonna wander away now. Cheers!
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Re: What about tattoos?
Old 07-27-2006, 03:12 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Looks like a nice little face-off going here, so let me weight in with my two cents. First of I'm over 40, so my age is probably showing ....anywayz, I HATE TATTOOS! To me they're like spray painting some stupid Chineese characters on a beautiful highway overpass. Unfortunately, almost 90% of the models I shoot with have a tottoo somewhere on their body. No problem if it's in an area that I can't see, but if it's in a very visible place I will ALWAYS ask the model if she wants the tattoo to show, or if she would like me to remove it. So far 100% have said I could remove it if I wanted! A few have even said they wished they could remove it as easily in real life as I do in Photoshop. Given the option, I always remove the tattoos! I feel the same way about hairy underarms -- not in my pictures! I'm a little more flexible with piercings as long as they don't have so many piercings on their bottom lip that it looks like a shower curtain holder.
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Re: What about tattoos?
Old 07-27-2006, 03:21 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I have a tattoo and I personally wouldn't care if a photographer wanted to PS it out. However, my tat is on my lower back, which rarely shows up in my pictures anyhow because I don't have the young perky butt that I had in my early 20s.

I don't model professionally, and never have, BUT......... if I were a professional model, I would have never gotten the tat in the first place.
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Re: What about tattoos?
Old 07-27-2006, 06:00 PM   #10 (permalink)
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A girl has the right to punch holes through her body, and color them w/ ink, too. But if the girl wants to be a model, she should understand that tatts and unusual piercings will, repeat WILL, cost her jobs, prestige, and money, money, money.

The ONLY type of jobs I can think of where tatts would be a plus would be explicitly counter-culture, punk, biker, 'bad girl' or the like. For all other types of modeling, tatts are a definite drawback. And the higher you go on the prestige/money scale, the more tatts are a drawback.

The Czech Republic and other parts of the former 'evil empire' and Eastern Europe are a growing source for models ranging from glamour to high-fashion, and a growing model-shooting destination. One reason, little talked-about, is that a much smaller percentage of the models there are inked. And talking to them, you understand that they know how it hurts them. "If I didn't want to model, who cares? Maybe I would [get inked]." one told me. "But if a girl wants to model, its really stupid to get tattoos."
 
 
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