Photography and the cemetery
I've seen over the last year a number of images made in cemeteries and am looking for advice on how to best go about it.Is it as simple as going to the house and asking permission to set up a tripod and shoot for the day or do you need to go through some paperwork.I've been somewhat cautious as they're all owned by someone,even if the cemetery is only a small plot,a gate and a few old tombstones and people visiting family members may not look too kindly to someone setting up shop where a familiy plot happens to be.Has anyone gone in,got permission,only to be confronted by a visitor or a worker unaware of your permission-and how do you respond,leave politely or just let them know you have permission and apologize for disturbing them.How long are you usually permitted to stay-and is a tripod even an option.Lastly,although I may not do this right away,how in the world do you get a model(esp nude) in a cemetery without drawing attention,or permission?
"An object never performs the same function as its name or its image"-Rene Magritte
"An image of a dog does not bite"-William James applied to photography
I have shot in cemeteries without permission and never had a problem. Probably not an issue depending on what you intend to do with the images.
If these cemeteries are on private property, as opposed to a public cemetery, you do need permission under the law. Without permission, it's trespassing. However, it would probably be up to the property owner to object.
I've only photographed in public (city owned) cemeteries, and no one has ever objected.
I've never gotten permission. Never needed to.
I live near a National Cemetary and was told I am allowed to photograph there with the stipulation that I cannot single out a grave marker.
A rule I always adhere to, regardless if its a cemetery or other, is if I have to go onto private property, I get permission from the owner first, in writing if possible. If its a public cemetery, then I don't see why you would need permission.
Hollywood Cemetery is an historic cemetery near me and there are photographers and models around there all the time. I haven't, however, seen any nude models.
Searching my way to perplexion
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It is somewhat more difficult than other remote outdoor areas, as cemeteries are usually not far from populated areas. I would study the traffic patterns and try to determine the times of least traffic... probably, early in the morning on a weekday. I would also suggest that wherever possible you bring along an assistant - lookout to position on the paths of access, with a cell phone/ radio to act as an early warning system.
Originally Posted by jim kirk jr.
And --- stay alert!
I really LIKE early morning light, anyway!
Ed Sukach, FFP.
I've photographed the CA Mission cemetaries without any problems before. I know at the Chapel of the Chimes in Oakland (only one of the most beautiful buildings in the world!) they ask that your photographs not include any names on the urns.
I'm pretty sure you wouldn't be able to photograph a nude in a mission cemetary... you're bound to run into a priest or sister.
While I've never done nude photography (or photography with a model, unless you consider a rock a model!), I'd definetely agree with the previous poster, to have a person to watch out. People visiting their departed love ones would probably be pretty upset if they saw someone photographing a naked person in the cemetary, especially if it was near their loved-ones' tomb!
You could also try building your own cemetary...
Nobody tell Jorge about this thread...! He'll FREAK!!! (just kidding)
Anyway - when I was just a pup and starting out with 4x5 the cemetary was one of my first haunts (not intentional -weak one, too!). I would go pretty much every weekend - maybe a total of 12 times. NEVER had a problem. It's one of the nice things about a big camera - nobody ever questions your right to be somewhere. Though I suppose that all changed after 9/11, eh?
"And --- stay alert!" No kidding! I did an early morning shoot at a poorly known and badly marked little waterfall with a trail (I thought) I could see others coming before they saw me. Was there for an hour with not a soul in sight. Talked my girlfriend into going back later to pose nude under the falls. Wouldn't you know we got caught twice in 1/2 hour and I only got 2 shots off before I decided to pack it in.
Originally Posted by Ed Sukach
You too, huh!
Originally Posted by FirePhoto
Let me tell you about the time we were caught by a rather large Fox Hunt...
One requirement - really necessary ... a wonderful - overdeveloped is even better - sense of humor.
Ed Sukach, FFP.