David Hickey (OMP Member #37713) is a veteran photographer with more than 20 years in the business. His impressive imagery of beautiful models in breathtaking locales has caught the eye of over 2.5 million viewers on OneModelPlace.com. Now his creative skills are in demand, as he juggles high-profile commercial assignments with model shoots at the Playboy Mansion.
His career behind the camera all started by when David was singled out as a student with a special gift. “I took a photography class in high school, and the teacher took me under his wing. He said he had never met a person with an eye like mine.”
The Southern California resident enjoys shooting many types of styles, mostly involving the female form. “I base my photography on capturing an energy inside whatever I am shooting. One of my favorite subjects is women — I love shooting natural beauty and hot, sassy and sexy, too.”
His favorite commercial assignments are the ones where the client, art director and support team work to create a look/feel of a company. I have shot pressure-packed live events that are too much stress. I shot the press introduction for Sony of Blu Ray DVD Technology. Waaaay stressful. I prefer shooting with Crystal or the Playmates at the Playboy Mansion or Bunny House!”
Speaking of Playboy, David has an affinity for shooting the lovely ladies of Hugh Hefner’s house –- in particular, a special model he met through OneModelPlace.com.
“I started shooting Crystal Harris when she was just 18. I met her on OMP. We shot for four years, and finally decided to submit her for Playboy. Over the years we became close friends. After she became Hef’s girlfriend, she came down to my house and shot with me in one of his pajama sets and captain’s hat. He fell in love with that image, blew it up, framed it and hung it in his bedroom. The next week I was invited by Hef to come meet him and shoot Crystal and the Shannon twins at the Playboy Mansion. I have been shooting with her and various other Playmates there and at the Bunny House ever since.”
David joined One Model Place back in 2003, and has been one of the site’s most prominent members ever since. “I first heard about OMP when someone on Fred Miranda’s forum suggested it – best advice I ever got on a forum!”
OneModelPlace.com has been instrumental in helping the photographer gain a following in the field. “”Nobody knew who I was before One Model Place. When I became a featured Photographer on OMP, my work was finally seen by many eyeballs. I have used the 2.5 million views and numerous Showcases to market myself to clients and top-notch models in an effort to raise the level of my work on a constant basis.”
In David’s camera bag are the Canon 1dMKIII, Canon 5D MKII, and lots of L lenses – “from the 14mm 2.8 to the 300 2.8 and everything in between!” He also brings a carefree attitude with him to each set. “Photography is fun. Shooting beautiful people is definitely fun and should be enjoyed!”
He offers some additional advice for photographers just starting out. “Find the best models you can to help you improve right away, even if that means paying a model. Two people who don’t know what they are doing is not the best foundation for a great shoot. The better the model is, the better a photographer’s work will look — and you will end up getting better and better models wanting to shoot with you.
David has several suggestions for models when booked for a shoot. “Come prepared to shoot! Get a good night’s sleep, have your grooming perfect, don’t drink alcohol the night before or eat a lot of salty food. Bring wardrobe that matches, and be ready to drop your walls. If you are shooting sexy, it’s okay to smile. Sexy should be fun!”
He also reminds models and photographers to focus on making a connection during each shoot. “I am open and honest with each model, so we can both be comfortable together. The magic in the images is in the connect. That connection can be seen forever by whomever views those images.”
Image of Crystal Harris by David Hickey