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Participation Process Overview

This page gives you an overview of what happens after you have applied to participate in the PhotoNaturals Program and what your continuing options are. And you will get an idea of what happens throughout the year. Photographers are Participants too, so please read everything carefully.


Basically there are three kinds of events: (1) small day trips (6-12 people) for which you are paid a fee to participate; (2) bigger events that are more open and social and are free; (3) multi day events and excursions that may require a small fee from you. Mostly everything happens within a 3-hour radius of San Francisco, from May to October. The time between completing your application and actually going on a trip could be a couple of weeks or several months, depending on the timing of things. There are a few steps that need to be completed before I can suggest a booking date for you.


Please do this soon - it is good to set your options well in advance. Don't forget to provide photos, at least one where I clearly can see your face and one where I get a sense of your whole body (does not have to be nude). Having this info allows me to put together a diverse group of physical types. Having your face shot means I will not be looking at a bunch of total strangers on the day you come out.


If you are female, or a male/female couple, and your application is good and complete you can almost certainly be booked for something. Sadly I cannot accept most of the single males applying. I am looking for gender balance when I put groups together. This is a fundamental reality of this project. Gay couples are welcome - I may just have to juggle some things to make it work. Another application imbalance I have to deal with is the fact that most of the single women applying are in their 20s and 30s. But most of the single men applying are in their 50s and 60s. This is not a good social match. The bottom line is that single women are almost always accepted, and I pick very carefully from the single guys. Also most single women can easily find a guy to bring, someone they know and are comfortable with. So, guys... get off your asses and put some effort into finding a woman to pair up with to apply.


Once you have done the Application and I am convinced that you are right for this project, I will invite you to complete the Registration form. This is different from the Application form in that it is an actual agreement specifying the terms and conditions of how we do things, photo use, etc. There are a lot of important points you need to know. If you complete this on-line agreement, I can then try and establish a date for you to participate. Having completed the registration is not a guarantee of anything. Most likely you WILL be offered a date, but it depends on how many shoots I can actually do and how many people I have to choose from at that point in time.


By knowing your city/town location and some idea about when you are free (eg. weekends/weekdays?) it makes it possible for me to match you with the trip that is right for you. Sometimes, when I have a bunch of people, let's say in Sacramento for example, I will plan something just for them that is geographically close. The following information focuses on the small one-day outings. Multi-day events happen differently.


At some point you will get an email from me proposing a date with some details about a trip and what the main activity will be, etc. I may give you a choice of dates. You need to let me know ASAP whether that day is likely to be OK. If the date is a month away I will not need a firm commitment. If it is a week away I really need to know right away.


Once you have accepted a date I send you a document that gives you all the details of location, schedule, transportation, things you should bring, etc. You must reconfirm that everything still looks OK for you. Normally you would get this about a week or two before.


The day before an outing I will likely phone you to make sure everything is still on and to make sure you know when you are being picked up or how you will transport yourself. if you are unsure about anything in the days before, please contact me by email or by cell (I will make a number available to you).


Go to the Trip Preparation page to get detailed information about how to prepare for the day. But in a nutshell: We usually meet at about 11 AM for brunch at a restaurant not too far from our final destination. It could be up to a 2-hour drive from San Francisco to this restaurant so expect to get up early. Often it is much closer. I pay for the lunch. It is an opportunity for people to get to know each other. I will also want to review a few points with the group. There will be a paper form of the same agreement you completed on-line for you to sign. I will be reviewing some technical details with photographers.


The final destination is usually no more 15 minutes drive from the restaurant and normally we would get there by about 1 PM. Typically there is a parking area and then a trail to the final area we are going to spend the day at. We try to travel light but you may be asked to help by carrying a bag or tripod. We start shooting stills and video at the restaurant and continue at the parking lot and shoot the walk as well.


We want to pick a single spot where we keep all our belongings and hopefully keep it out of the background of photos. More details about what is expected from the actual afternoon of activities and photography is found on another page. Later in the afternoon we will reach a point of low energy and know it is time pack up and head out back to the cars.


While we are at or near the location there needs to be another meeting in which I download all the photos from the CF cards of other photographers onto my laptop. At this point you would be paid if there is a fee payable that day. Often we will go back to the restaurant to do this and you will be treated to another meal or snack. You may even get to see some of the photos on a laptop while we are there. After that everyone goes home. It is best that you do not have something important planned for the evening since your return for a particular time cannot be guaranteed.


Some weeks later, after that round of shooting is complete and I am back home, the first thing I have to do is archive all the raw images and put everything on back-up disks. Before I can give people access to images from the trip they attended, I have to edit each set of images, convert them from raw files to high quality jpegs, and do some cropping and color-correcting as I go along. This is actually quite time consuming. It can take a couple of months before the images from your trip are ready because I will have thousands of images from multiple shoots to deal with. In the future I hope to be able to afford to have a small staff that will streamline this process.


I have set up a special secure website for the purpose of sharing images with participants. You will have your own log in and the permissions for your login will be set up so that you can access full resolution versions of all images shot on any trip you attended. If you attended a shoot in the past and do not have a login, just let me know and I'll set you up. The sets of "master" images are presented by photographer, and I include photos that may be of interest to you but will not necessarily be used for the website. A lot of repeat frames are included to give you the widest possible choice. Many shots will not be used publicly; they are there for your own use.


The sets of master photos are further edited down and once again cropped and sized for web presentation. We now have a new website,, which is a pay-membership site and presents each outing we do as a large photo gallery and video clips gallery. It is the place where we express to the world our body-freedom philosophy. The website will hopefully become a source of revenue to support PhotoNaturals as an ongoing project.


Every year there are numerous possibilities for you to participate. For a current list of what is coming up, check the EVENTS page. The latest innovation is the use of retreat facilities for having multi-day events. If they are successful they will be yearly. Some established events: Every fall we have the more open Nude Beach Party Day with contests, games and sports and activities. (in 2010 it was called BodyFest but I am moving this name to our new summer camp event). Also yearly is the "Unveiling Party" - we have had 2 of these, the last one in the fall of 2010. It will likely be a yearly spring event so the next one is in 2012. This event happens in a performance space in the SOMA district of San Francisco - we project the thousands of images from the past year. All past Participants are invited and you may bring a guest that you think might want to participate in the future (by permission). Highlighting the evening are a variety of nude performances.

Please continue to read about TRIP PREPARATION

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