Inspired by Helmut Newton from Neil Buchan-Grant


This picture was shot after seeing June Newton’s documentary about her husband Helmut’s working life. I was trying to do something with a bit more narrative and at least some mystery about it. One of the 2 models booked couldn’t make it so I ploughed on with one. I used 2 continuous lights balanced against the sunlight through the door, but in the end I burned most of the fill away as the high contrast seemed to work better. It was a first try at anything like this and I’d like to do more so I’d appreciate your criticism.

Kind Regards

Hi Neil,
I think your lighting is immaculate! Really nice – the shot overall is very good. My only comment is on the direction. I went back to some of Helmut’s work, all of his images (mostly) have an air of mystery or menace or sexual tension. This is the one thing missing in your shot. In my humble opinion just being naked is not enough, she needs to have some sense of anticipation or mystery, a shadow of somebody behind her? She looks too relaxed. Nice work on your web site too! Keep up the good work!

  • DBB

    Perhaps what I miss in a Newton-style photo would be the model looking towards the camera, a kind of look of pride or defiance. Beyond that, formally, the picture is superb, both in its composition and lighting.