Quite often when you browse modeling or photography portfolios in the less professional end of the spectrum you see a lot of images that are heavily “inspired” by famous images. When I say inspired, I clearly mean very much ripped off. You see a lot of muscle guys dressed up like a Spartan from 300 or bodypainted to look like Avatar. Why? Sure they look good but it’s been done before with a much bigger budget and better photoshop. There’s no point recreating an image like that. You can’t actually use the image anywhere other than your portfolio. Someone else owns the rights to those characters.
Above I’ve included a selection of images that I see regularly ripped off on Model Mayhem profiles. In the middle is Robert Mappelthorpe’s VERY famous Man In a Polyester Suit. Yes it’s great that you have a big wang or you’ve found a model with a big wang but this image is iconic so why recreate it and not quite as good? Djimon Hounsou posed for Herb Ritts lots of times and is the star of the equally iconic shot with an octopus on his head. Now I’ve done some strange things to models but I’ve never draped them in a dead sea creature. This shot is so well known for it’s absurdity as much as it’s beauty so I find it baffling that so many people have draped models in dead octopus trying to copy it.
The same with Herb Ritt’s photo of the hot guy holding the two car tyres. This one has been ripped off so many times it’s crazy but at least I can kind of see why. Holding tyres like this accentuates the muscles and gives the model a reason to flex but guess what? It’s been done before and better by Mr Ritts. Stop.