Nude photography

Nude photography
A nude photograph by Félix-Jacques Moulin from the early 1850s

Nude photography is a style of art photography which depicts the nude human body as a study. Nude photography should be distinguished from glamour photography, which places more emphasis on the model and her/his sexuality, and treats the model as the primary subject. Nude photography should also be distinguished from erotic photography, which has a sexually suggestive component. Nude photography is also distinguished from pornographic photography, which is of a sexually explicit nature.

Many photographers consider an art nude photograph to be a one that studies the human body, rather than the person. A photograph of a person that is meant to be recognized is called a portrait, and nude photographs often do not show a face at all. Nude photography is generally not a snapshot, but a composed image of a person in a still position. As an art form, nude photography is a stylized depiction of the nude body with the line and form of the human figure as the primary objective. Photographers sometimes use extremes of light and shadow, oiled skin, and shadows falling across the body to show texture and structure of the body.[1]

Early photographers often depicted the nudity of women like the one we see here by Félix-Jacques Moulin. Many, like Edward Weston, Ruth Bernhard and Jerry Avenaim, preferred to depict the lines of a body as a piece of art. They imported from the terminology of painting the terms art nude and figurenude to avoid suggestions that their works were erotica or pornography. Robert Mapplethorpe helped pioneer the later works that deliberately blurred the boundaries between erotic and artistic nude photography.[2]


See also


  1. ^ For example, see Conrad, Donna; PhotoVision (2000), "A Conversation with Ruth Bernhard", Vol. 1 No. 3,  . There she described her use of nude subjects as exactly the same as regular still-life photos.
  2. ^ Mcnair, Brian (2002). Striptease culture: sex, media and the democratization of desire. Routledge. p. 183. ISBN 0415237343. 

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