Ghostly Bodies Infrared portraits

Through my development as a photographer, the series that has shaped me most has been my 'Ghostly Bodies' series.


The original idea was inspired by Reto Caduff's portrait book, 'Freckles'. While his original portraits focused primarily on shallow depth of field freckled faces, I decided to take my own approach by shooting my subjects in infrared.

Shooting portraits in digital infrared gives the subject an eery, almost ghostly quality. Lighter skins turns alabaster porcelain as many of the skin's imperfections seem to fade away. This is in stark contrast to the inspiration I had previously mentioned -- that work takes an imperfection (i.e., freckles) and details its beauty to us all.

The wonderful Miki and her beautiful micro-expressions

However, I quickly moved from the close-up portraits to taking full body portraits. This change was inspired by the work of Guido Argentini's Argentum, and the work of Andre Brito. The work of both photographers really capture the beauty of the human form with perfect lighting. You are not drawn to the nudity, but rather the highlights, shadows, and form of each model in their work. This inspired me to want to do more with the way I view my subjects and show their form and figure.


I started experimenting more with my lighting. I found that for infrared portraits, cross-lighting or direct over-head light worked best. This provided the ideal contrast to give the compositions that extra little bit of pop.

Top: Jessi June (Left), Zoey (Right). Middle: Christine iDiivil (Left), Brooke Eva (Right). Bottom: Brooke Eva

As a next step, I started to see more couples and acrobatic performers. The inclusion of such performers would put a greater emphasis on the form and lines, with the lighting and infrared providing a smooth and ethereal quality.

"Hold" with Kitty & Aaron, the proprietors of the Little Boxes Theater
"Play" with Kitty & Aaron
Acrobats and performers are among the best subjects for what I am trying to achieve. Acroyoga partners Aaron and Jenna
The Divine Goddess on a lyra
Aaron on straps

The Next Steps

This project is continually evolving. I plan on making more images using performers to help me create more ethereal images. It is my hope that this project will continue to highlight the beauty of alternative forms of photography (e.g., infrared) and the human body.

Top Left: Eugenie De Sade. Top Right: Anna. Middle Left: Theresa Manchester. Bottom Left: Kitty. Bottom Right: Clinay
Created By
Amoa Kumi


Amoa Photography

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