Friday, August 14, 2015

Enthralled: Ruben M by Covet Image

'When I saw Ray's work, I was immediately enthralled and knew he was the photographer I needed to work with!'

Enthralled is the perfect adjective to describe how I felt when first seeing Ray's images of Ruben M. I was fortunate to discover Ray's (Covetimage) work last fall and his work with Ruben is the fifth of hopefully many shoots I have had the pleasure to feature. Ray's work just keeps getting better and better and I am always amazed that no matter who he is shooting, whether a body builder or a dancer, Ray manages to zero in on what makes them captivating and unique.

24 year old Chicago model Ruben M says it has sometimes been a struggle to find photographers to shoot with in Chicago, so was thrilled that after he e-mailed Ray, they set up a shoot. Ruben definitely has an spectacular body, one created from his passion for dance. Ray had always wanted to shoot with a saturated white background and Ruben proved the perfect model, with the white beautifully highlighting Ruben's arms, legs, stomach and chest muscles. 'His lean, muscular physique pops against the bright white background. The bright blue swimsuit adds the only punch of color.

Ray didn't just focus on the obvious though, in addition to Ruben's physique, Ray brilliantly brought out so many other facets of his personality. Ray describes Ruben as a 'master of emotions' which certainly came through loud and clear in the final images. With each look and prop, whether it be the summer hat, Ruben transforms into a completely new character, still showing off his lean muscular frame, but with different emotions and degree's of attitude.

Ruben's face and eyes are so expressive, sometimes sultry and serious, other times fun and playful. Ray says that although Ruben's physique certainly demanded attention, it was his facial expressions that really excited him about their work together. Capturing different looks and emotions ended up being the fun part, but Ray knew his main goal was to capture Ruben's amazing anatomy. 'Ruben's physique has been developed, in part, to his formal dance background. I wanted to capture the beauty of his form in this image. The lines of his silhouette are long and graceful, like a performance.'

'Ray is not only one of the best photographers I've worked with, but a phenomenal person. He makes me feel super comfortable and was ready and prepared. He had everything ready when I got there, even things I needed but forgot to mention! I'm happy to say that I laughed a lot during the shoot, and he was OK with it! :)'

I have often written of my love of featuring dancers. The video below, from Ruben's YouTube page, from a 2013 shoot, demonstrates beautifully why.

'At the end of the shoot, Ruben wanted to do a little showing off. Using just his upper-body strength, he lifted and balanced his frame into various poses. It was truly amazing to see and document.'

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