naked in the house began in 2001 as an idea. What would happen if a group of photographers were given
• one camera
• one lens
• one roll of film
• and one half hour
to shoot a beautiful naked model they had never seen before in an architectural setting with a personality as distinct hers? No lights. No assistants. No crutches. Could they deliver art under pressure? And given the parameters of the challenge, would any have the guts to compete?They did. In spades.
Each photographer got to submit three images that were displayed during an awards party that got the whole city out. The evening culminated in a blind ballot, whereby the photographers decided amongst themselves who took the best photograph. naked in the house was born.
Thanks to the exposure the competition enjoyed on City TV, Fashion Television and the Fashion Television Digital Channel, naked in the house grew steadily over the next five years. The naked in the house one hour special became one of the most talked about events in Canada and was broadcast by Fashion Television to over three million homes nationally, and one hundred and twenty countries internationally. naked in the house 2002 won a Gemini Award for Best Editing and naked in the house 2004 was nominated for a Gemini for Best Arts Documentary.
After the 2006 competition, it was time to take a step back. Was a photo-competition based on the values of shooting traditional film still relevant in a digital world? A world where the concept of a limited number of frames no longer existed? Was television really the best way to reach the global audience that naked in the house was originally intended for? Was it time to take this project in a new direction?
Founder and Creative Director Dan Couto set out to find new partners with the passion and energy he felt that naked in the house needed. A serendipitous meeting with event producers and photography buffs produced a series of interesting and innovative ideas that have modernized the competition while maintaining its relevancy.
naked in the house today
naked in the house was designed to bring the photographer back to the roots of the craft, when photographers were forced to rely on very few tools, to create art under pressure. I realized that the core of naked in the house was to put photographers back in touch with that essence, that thing that has guided all photographers from the time of film—their eye. This essence was the core of the show and couldn’t be altered. It did, however, need to be technologically adjusted. Thus twelve photographers will still have:
• one camera,
• one lens,
• and one half hour
to photograph a nude model who’s identity is a mystery in a location they have only seen pictures of. But now instead of having one roll of film, they will have one roll of ‘digital’ film in the form of a special smart card that will only hold twelve images. The backs of their cameras will also be taped up so there is no in-camera editing.
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