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Design By Humans
Published On: Fri, Dec 13th, 2019

THE SEX FILES: Photographer Ellen Stagg on the Art of Nude Modeling and More

Ellen Stagg Photo by Ellen Stagg

I mentioned two new Goliath Books in my last SEX FILES. One being, More Dirty Girls Having Fun, by Brooklyn-based photographer Ellen Stagg, is as much a female-empowering collection as it is a feast for the eyes (at least in my hetero male viewpoint). I got lucky enough to catch up with Stagg and ask her a few questions…

With three years between the publication of the first Dirty Girls and the new one, why the new book now? 

I have been putting this book together for over a year. After being diagnosed with chronic Lyme last year, I emailed Goliath, and they wanted to help by putting out a new book. The first one did so well that it went into a second printing, and Goliath believed in me enough for a second book. Plus, I probably have enough content from StaggStreet.com to make ten books. I also had much more hands-on with picking the images for this one with more diversity in it. Models like Eliza Allure, London Andrews, Steam, Poison Ivory, Asa Akira, and Ana Foxxx offer more diversity in body sizes and in ethnicity than the first book. Plus, this book has more full-page images so you can really see my photos, instead of 4 images on 1 page. It’s really all about the work.

Do you take pictures with concepts in mind, imagining that one day this or that picture will fit into this or that book or piece? Or do you just shoot, when not on assignment, and let things fall where they may?

I just shoot. I usually shoot Trade for Content, so we have to work with what we got, on very little budget. My work flows well together because it’s my point of view and my signature way of shooting. I edit and retouch my images for my sites, and when I put a book together, I have a backlog of a lot of work to pick from. Makes it easy to have all the images ready and retouched.

How do you go about finding models? 

Most of my models find me. I have models from porn to burlesque that want to work with me, and I rarely turn away any models. I have turned away people if they have never modeled nude before, or if the timing is wrong or when I was sick; I couldn’t work. I also try to only shoot one Trade shoot a week as I need time to edit the work. But I’m lucky my models all like my work enough to reach out to me.

Tell me what you find with Goliath specifically that works for what you do with your erotica? 

They are very sex-positive and excited about my content. I’m lucky I found a publisher that is as perverted as me.

Can you explain what your view of the ‘feminist point of view” is in the case of shooting nude images of ladies? 

For me, the feminist view is just respect and consent. I shoot my models how they want to be seen, and I celebrate them for it. Being a feminist is all about communication and being an ally to my models.

What’s coming up for you in 2020?

To keep shooting and maybe in 3 more years coming out with my 3rd book.

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THE SEX FILES: Photographer Ellen Stagg on the Art of Nude Modeling and More