“Like going to war.” This is how one of the wrestlers in photographer Ken Hermann and art director Gem Fletcher‘s project Bökh, describes Mongolian wrestling. Shot in the grasslands of Inner Mongolia, the resulting portraits and short film pay respect to this ancient tradition. It’s a tradition that is still very much alive in the nomadic communities that account for 30% of the country’s population.
Originally from Tegucigalpa, Honduras, Carlos Nunez is an LA-based photographer whose gorgeous shots can easily range from sweet and demure to downright sexy. You can tell that he has that rare ability to put his models at ease, making them feel free to express themselves and show us a side to them few people ever get to see.
Take a look at Nunez’s blog and you’ll see shots we can’t necessarily feature here on My Modern Met (in other words, NSFW). Sexually charged, the photos are a tribute to the empowered woman and her willingness to be unabashedly free.
I was able to get in touch with the elusive Nunez to ask him a few questions. Read that short interview, below, after enjoying his sweet and seductive photos.
Q: Can you give us a little background about how you got started in photography?
A: I started my photography career pretty much on accident about three years ago after receiving a digital camera for Christmas. Pretty much sat there for months till I decided to start taking pictures of my girlfriend at the time. From her, I started to shoot more girls that were friends and started to work with people that wanted to build their portfolios, make-up, styling, etc. Now that’s all I do…shoot photos.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: I would say that, for the most part, my work is natural, soft, voyeuristic and erotic. I have a more hipster sensibility to my photos especially of woman, in their styling, choice of woman to shoot, hair and make-up. But that’s my obvious photography or what I’m known for. If you really look at my website, it shows a wide variety of work and subject matter.
Q: What are some of your secret to getting such sexy shots?
A: I don’t think I have a secret. I tend to look for those moments where there is a connection; a sort of unspoken feeling, like right before you’re going to kiss someone. That’s where I get my best moments. I also have girls that 100% percent trust what I do and I also make sure they know what kind of photography I take.
Q: Which photographers do you admire?
A: Photographers that I admire are pretty much the obvious ones. Helmet Newton not for his photography itself but for his attitude, for his assurance when taking a photograph. For him, it’s about knowing what he does the best and taking pictures without questions. One thing I’ve noticed is that these days photographers, especially digital photographers, don’t have the ability to look at the back of the screen and tell the person right next to them “Do you think that’s good?” David Bellemare for his romantic portrayal of images. I think you can see a lot of his influence in my work. Terry Richardson for taking campy photos and making them look sexy and cool.
Q: Can you give us some tips for aspiring photographers?
A: Just do it. I hear so many excuses from beginning photographers like, “I don’t have this kind of camera,” or “I don’t have this lens” or “The girls I shoot are not good models” etc… I’ve taking photos with cameras that I’ve bought for five dollars at a Salvation Army for ad campaigns.. Best tip I would say is learn how to convey your attitude through your lens and just do it.
Q: Any quotes you live by?
A: As cheesy as this sounds, it would have to be from a documentary called American Movie in a part where the director of the movie is opening a huge stack of bills and the last letter he opens is a credit card. He says, “Oh God, Kick-fucking-ass, I got a Master Card. I don’t believe it, man. Life is kinda cool sometimes.”
No matter how much shit is thrown at you, know that right around the next corner something epic is going to happen.
Thanks for the interview, Carlos, and for openly sharing your story with us.