It was in facing the reality of fleeting moments that Isaias Mattos, still a child, began to photograph. In 2007, inspired by the photographs of La Chapelle and Richard Avedon, he assumed his passion as a profession. From this context of visual curiosity he gave birth to the WAPO project, appeasing a latent desire to photograph male bodies. Initially without great artistic pretensions beyond capturing the intimacy of friends so that they could share those moments with loved ones, it ended up gaining another dimension as viewers began to identify with the photo series, which included physical types that often escaped from the necessarily lean or muscular male stereotype.
I was shown project WAPO for the first time by my friend Ruano Berenguel, who is a male nude gourmand even more than I am. I didn’t hesitate to contact Isaias, and he loved the idea of a collaboration. It was a few months until he contacted me with the date of his coming from Porto Alegre, in the south of Brazil, to São Paulo.
At the time, I had been visiting my parents in the countryside more frequently than usual, and that gave me the idea to shoot at their house. That way we could escape from my own apartment in São Paulo — where Rods and I had already photographed way too many times — but still retain the familial atmosphere that is present throughout project WAPO.
We woke up to shoot as soon as the day dawned, taking pictures at several places inside and around the house; solo, and with Rods and I as a couple as well. I chose to publish first the solo pictures, but now the photos we took as a couple have also been added below at the end of the solo series.
As for the model-photographer relation, shooting with Isaias was instantly gratifying. Even though we were all still a little numb from sleep when we started shooting, we had had a great time mutually sharing stories during our road trip to the countryside on the previous evening, and it felt like we had been friends for a long time. I love this feeling of wanting to share yourself with someone, be it through personal stories, posing nude or performing; and especially when it is a mutual feeling.
That’s how I felt with Isaias Mattos.
I hope mom and dad will be pleased to see their beautiful home represented here in frames, views, nature, and so many fond memories and sensations. It means a lot to me to have this place I love featured in my Project.
Finally, these are the photographs we took together on that same morning. Revisiting them now, a few months after they were made, takes me back to melancholic times we had been going through at the time, with new and old matters haunting our private life… At the time of posting a few months later, I thought they served as a reminder that true love would be forever, and hardships are just hardships, a natural consequence of following life’s path. They are made to be overcome, and thus help us turn old bonds into new wings for us to fly. But time, again and again, plays its own game…
And what do you feel by looking at these images? Isaias Mattos and I would love to hear it.
Finally, if you’d like to see the series of extras for this photoshoot (a chill out session at the swimming pool we did at the end of the shoot — here’s one of them below), as well as to discover many different ways you can engage with me in the making of 100 NUDE Shoots and the remainder of my work, please take a minute to visit this page and consider contributing.