Photographer Richard Rothsteinintroduced FH to model Sergey Sheptun in February 2018. The shoot, (Glass House) was part of Richard's apartment series. I was instantly drawn to Richard's work with Sergey, especially the incredible lines and curves created. Originally from Ukraine, Sergey's shatteringly hot poses and moves come from his experiences as an actor and dancer.
It was clear from the get go that Richard had a new muse. Over the next two years, Richard and Sergey worked together on frequently, sometimes weekly, and FH was lucky to share close to forty of their creative collaborations. I have always been amazed the array of Richard's innovative and original idea's, but his work with Sergey pushed his artistry to even greater heights.
Sergey has led so many of my favorite of Richard's shoots, especially his series of homonormative fairy tales. Some of the many roles Sergey took on included; beauty in Beauty and the Beast, Red, in Little Red Hiding Hood, and of course the merman that helped inspire today's series of posts.
Sergey is an incredibly strong model, leading both solo shoots, as well as in a wide array of shoots with other models. Sergey seems to have chemistry with everyone, and Richard beautifully captured every moment of erotic friction sparked and created.
One of the things I love best about Sergey's work is the blend of innocence with erotic maturity. When Sergey first began working with Richard, he was new to United States having only having recently moved to New York. There was a 'newness', to his work, an exciting energy that seemed to come from his new life and home and the relationships that followed. This 'newness; however, couldn't hold back any of Sergey's sexual intensity and desire, and he brought it powerfully to every shoot. Thanks to Richard for introducing us to Sergey, and for sharing so much of their work together!
All hunted creatures live with the fear of being seen. They've all learned the hard way, the key to survival is their ability to hide. To submerge before being spotted, to go deep when boats and humans are around. They've learned to sense it, through both fear, and by feeling the vibrations and subtle changes in the current. It ripples against their skin and their gills, like a bolt of terror, from their heads down to their tails.
Thankfully, just as humans have their sanctuaries, Mermen to have a place to feel safe, be themselves, and connect and bond with fellow members of their species. The mysterious Mermen Cove is inaccessible to humans, it a place only Merman can see and find. Through their sonar, Mermen gravitate to their cove when they need a break or an escape. Or course the main reason Mermen head to the cove is more organic, it's the most popular place in the ocean to get a hot piece of tail.
Not all mermen have long fishy tails. One of the best known mermen is Aquaman, who glides through the ocean with speed and ease. There are many men without tails who feel most at home, and most free to express themselves, when they're underwater.
I've written previously about the serenity many of us feel when hovering just below the surface. I think most of us remember being at a crowed, noisy public swimming pool, then swimming to the bottom of the deep, looking up, and feeling a sense of tranquility, looking up at the 'noise' above the surface. Sadly, most of us can't stay down there that long, and are forced to emerge from our underwater escape.
Over the years, I've loved featuring many artists and models who shot and worked in, and under the water. Some of the photographers, like Mike Tossy and Gordon Nebeker take the plunge into the deep end with their models, to get just the right shot. Others, shoot from the beach, or side of the pool. Regardless of the method, the results are of incredible underwater angels, flying through the water with erotic abandon and freedom. These sets of images, are some of my favorites.