by Melissa Faithful
Ryan McGinley is an American photographer, well known for his nude photographs and portraits. The unique way he experiments with the human body and his interesting landscapes make his work work stand out. One of his greatest achievements is that at the age of 23, he became the youngest artist to present a solo exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art.
When talking about his work and his relationship with his models, McGinley explains how nudity has nothing to do with confidence. “When some people are photographed, their personalities really shine through and I don’t really have to do that much, like if a person has a strong personality I just let them do their thing. On the other hand, even someone who’s really shy can be great. Sometimes it feels like you can cut the awkwardness in the air with a knife. But I also want to pull emotions out of people, or offer them activities to get them going, because a lot of the kids come in and they’re scared. In most cases it’s the first time they’ve been photographed nude, so all the movement helps get them comfortable and I can draw these gestures and feelings out of them,” he says in an interview with Catherine Opie.