If you are out and about in Sydney and a guy walks up and asks you to model for him and his name is Lucas Austin aka The Shady Beau, I say don’t hesitate. Grab the opportunity and do it. I first came across Lucas’ photography a while ago on tumblr when I saw some stunning photos of Daniel Garofoli and I was jealous and inspired all at the same time.

Lucas mixes with a lot of cool people and when he photographs them something really special happens. That sounds like a bunch of wank but it really is true. Lucas has a distinctive style that seems to capture their edginess and their sensitivity at the same time, all lit impeccably with a soft warmth that I’m guessing is how Lucas sees the world.

The Shady Beau and I had a conversation this week after his latest post on his blog. It was followed by a bit of an upset status update on facebook because people had been posting unkind comments about his models. As photographers who can’t afford to pay professional models, we rely on the bravery and kindness of our friends and strangers who are willing to put themselves out there for us to shoot, often not wearing much if anything at all. So to have people say that the model is ugly or skinny or has revolting whatever is totally rude and unacceptable. None of these guys in Lucas’ photos included here, or even the vast majority on his blog are professionals. They are just regular guys like you and me. Even professional models shouldn’t have to put up with people ripping into them just because their photo is on the internet.

I’m yet to actually meet Lucas but until I do, and long after, I’ll keep enjoying his photography for it’s technical skill and it’s simplistic beauty.