Natasha Schon is one of our most enduringly popular artists at The Life Erotic, having clocked up over 100 galleries, and it’s easy to understand her appeal. Schon has a particular talent for capturing beauty. Her work is erotic, teasing and arousing, with the emphasis always placed squarely upon conveying the model’s unique beauty and personality. She also brings a superb fashion sensibility to her shoots, which are sublimely stylish, feminine and suffused with natural glamour. Considering the high esteem in which she is held by lovers of high-class erotica here at TLE and on our sister site MetArt, Schon is charmingly modest about her photography; I was delighted to have the opportunity to ask her about what inspires her…
Natasha, where are you from?
NS: I was born in Kiev, Ukraine.
What is your background in photography?
NS: I’m not a professional at all – I started shooting out of personal interest 15 years ago. At that time digital cameras didn’t exist and I found shooting on film to be a very complicated and uninteresting process. But when I first used a digital camera it all changed. I found it very interesting and since then I don’t want to do anything else! I learned how to use Photoshop and I do everything myself. But when I was a child I really enjoyed flipping through photography books and books with illustrations, and I think my love for art was there from when I was born.
What inspired you to start shooting erotica?
NS: I only work in the erotica genre. First I was shot myself by another photographer, and then I realized I didn’t enjoy modeling and decided to try shooting for myself. I also work on portfolios, but only occasionally, because I feel I have more freedom in the erotica genre and I choose the model myself. I also choose for myself where and how I will be photographing her, and that’s what I like about this job.
Are you influenced by mainstream art and photography?
NS: I often watch fashion channels and I read a lot of magazines. I also watch a lot of films and of course learn from professionals. I try my best!
Do you think being a woman shooting in this genre is an advantage?
NS: From one point of view it’s a big advantage to be a female photographer… girls trust me more and are not scared to come on set, and of course their loved ones are more at ease with it. But I also understand that girls can’t always show real passion in front of a woman.
You have been shooting photosets for TLE for almost four years – how do you think your style has evolved?
NS: It’s very hard for me to judge my own work, I’m always unhappy about something! I think that I have a long way to go until I reach perfection. But unfortunately I don’t have much time for that. My family takes up most of my time!
Do you prefer studio, location or outdoor shoots?
NS: I like shooting everywhere! The main thing is not to get stuck in one place. If I had more money I would take models to different countries all the time and shoot them there.
Is there a photoset you are most proud of?
NS: I’m not particularly proud of any whole set – I like some specific photos from different shoots, but there are not too many!
Would you ever consider shooting movies for us?
NS: I tried shooting movies, but I don’t think it’s my thing…
TLE is moving more towards ‘soft kink’ – is this something that inspires you?
NS: Yes, I like soft kink style!
Is there a model who most inspires you?
NS: I like having new models on set, that’s what inspires me. But often girls themselves ask me to shoot them and then I can’t say no – of course only if this model suits TLE!
Your model Kira W is very popular with TLE members, what is she like to shoot?
NS: Kira is a very good person and I find it very easy to work with her. We have become real friends, but she lives in a different city and so we only see each other on shoots. She is ready to come over anytime and shoot in this genre for a long time. She is also quite an artistic person and she comes up with many ideas.
Do you plan your shoots in great detail, or see how it evolves on the day?
NS: Yes, I do plan every shoot in detail, but sometimes everything changes while we are on set! I usually have a certain idea in my mind, but when a girl comes on set and she doesn’t fit that idea I have to change everything around; but I quite like that – in my opinion that’s what art is.
What are your ambitions for your work with TLE?
NS: I don’t have any ambitions… even if a couple of people say that they like my photos, I feel joy and it means I’m not doing it all in vain!
What do you hope the viewers get from your photos?
I want to show off all of the good sides that my models have, and hide their flaws. I don’t like vulgar photos at all… I think that’s not art anymore, and it can be done by any man... you don’t need to think too much about it or work too hard on it.
NS: Is there anything else you would like to say?
I like working with the MetArt Network, you don’t limit my freedom and you don’t ask me to shoot only vulgar photos and I’m grateful for that. I will keep trying my best!