Gravel is shot by a conveyor belt over my sculpture area to get ready to shoot.

Shoots don’t just happen, at least not good ones.   You have to get ready to shoot.  I prepare for some shoots more than others.  When a shoot is scheduled well in advance and I have a great model, I put in more work.

The steel fence gives privacy. The sculptures will get cleaned before the shoot.

Whitney Masters will be shooting with me a couple of times this week.  She contacted me a few weeks ago to inquire about a shoot, and I was impressed by her portfolio.  I agreed.

I plan a shot with this down saguaro. The ribs will make a cool prop.

I’m in my new home in Tucson, and the studio is not yet built (drawings are completed).  To do the shoot, I had to unpack my studio lights, props, wardrobe and makeup.  As of this moment, I have only found the cords for 3 lights.

This week I did a number of things besides unpack.  I built a steel fence around the area I call the sculpture garden. It makes the yard private, so nude work is more feasible.  I designed the fence with a section that allows a 10′ high backdrop to be attached, and my 10′ x 20′ backdrop arrived yesterday.  Also yesterday, I had a conveyer assisted truck spread fine gravel over the sculpture garden.  A thousand bucks, and still, there was a gap between the fence and the gravel, so more gravel is needed.  I called.  It will be down in time and I won’t have that shadow line where the fence meets the ground.

One of many nice spots I scouted for us to shoot.

Whitney and I will shoot in the pool as well.  Summer comes early to Tucson.  We had weather over 100 in April and in the first week of May we hit 108 one day.  It is back down in the 90’s, and cooler at night.  To keep the pool warm and comfortable, I got a solar blanket.  It protects against cooling at night. I got a wicker box to store the blanket when not in use.  All that is put together a day or two before the shoot.

Classic desert hillside loaded with cacti. Locations are scouted.

To get ready to shoot there is also a need for food (shop to make an interesting menu) and to make it more fun, I put together a music play list for the day.

The solar blanket is to keep the water as warm as I can. Comfort makes better photos.

Finally, to get ready to shoot I scouted locations.  In addition to shooting in my home, we’re going to shoot in the desert.  We want lots of saguaros, desert vistas, desert ecology. Several sites failed:  lack of privacy or difficult access.  However, I found some great places with excellent privacy.  I have poses and photos in mind.  That’s what it takes to get ready to shoot.