Monday, October 19, 2015
Physical Gifts: Will SF by YogaBear Studio
'Will is a consummate professional—he always gives 200% to our sessions. It’s always a treat to work with him—he brings so much charm and personality to the sessions, which complement his physical gifts perfectly.'
YogaBear Studio's David use of the phrase physical gifts was a perfect description not only of the incredible Will SF, but also as a descriptor of why I so love his work. There are many photographers whose credit is physique, or fitness photographer and many are masters at capturing the male form. There are also many who use this title, who really just shoot dick. You can tell with a quick glance at their images that form and fitness are just camouflage words for the real intent.
It is not that it's a bad thing to love a specific body part, all photographers shooting the male form I am sure, have their favorites. There is such a clear visual difference however between artists who shoot the male form in it's entirety, and those who focus on their model's penis's, as if the rest of their body were not attached. I love how David see's his models in their entirety, their bodies, regardless of degree of muscle mass, age, size as gifts, both physical and spiritual, to be celebrated and captured with reverence and honor.
Will's body is indeed a gift worth celebrating, but a gift whose exterior package came with dedication and hard work. Will's background in movement began when started gymnastics at the age of eight. 'I trained hard, competed in the junior Olympics and after high school earned a scholarship to UC Berkeley. We were a top 10 Division 1 team and I was captain my senior year.' Soon life and livelihood took over and Will began an eight year career in Pharmaceutical Sales. Those eight years were enough for Will who decided to quit and join the health and fitness industry.
'I first became a certified personal trainer and group fitness instructor. Then I became certified to teach Spinning, Body Pump, ski conditioning and FitBall. I decided to become a massage therapist and I went to the Boulder College of Massage and graduated with honors from their 1,000 hour program. After that, I moved from Boulder to San Diego where I went to Yoga and Pilates school. For several years I was a trainer, group fitness instructor, Yoga and Pilates instructor, AND a massage therapist. I loved it, but seven years ago I moved to SF and discovered springboard and platform diving.'
Will says he got SO into diving, he decided to downsize his lifestyle selling most of his exercise and Pilates equipment in order to focus on diving as much as he could. Will trained with a great coach for 4-6 days a week for four years winning three gold medals at the Gay Games in Germany and a gold, silver and bronze at the Masters World Championships in Italy.
A few injuries followed, but Will's passion for fitness never waned and when diving was no longer a viable option, Will decided to try dance. 'I'm loving dance now, almost as much as diving. I take 4 classes each week in the styles of modern, jazz and hip hop. Recently I began performing in a few shows and I'm about to begin rehearsals for a performance over New Years weekend.' For much of the last 30 years, Will has been chronicling his fitness achievement through his modeling. 'David is definitely one of my all-time favorite photographers. I have worked with him 4 or 5 times and I think we each get better and better the more we work together.' You can see in these images, that David not only captured Will's considerable physical gifts, but as well his dance training and wealth of fitness history within the movement and poses so beautifully captured.
'David is so professional and focused and skilled, he is a master at what he does and i always get the best feedback on the photos from my shoots with him. He's also very friendly and fun to work with :). I just shot with him in July and I'm already looking forward to the next shoot. He consistently has original ideas and concepts that are sexy, creative and fun to play out.'