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Underwater Nude Model Bitten by Shark on Photo Shoot; 'We Push the Envelope'
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WEST PALM BEACH, Florida -- There were two close calls for two of West Palm Beach underwater-nude photographer Todd Essick's models.

Essick was working on a new coffee-table picture book of disrobed women interacting with sea life in the Bahamas last week when his muses bumped into overly friendly reef sharks.

"We push the envelope," Essick said. "And there are some risks involved."

One model, 26-year-old San Francisco mermaid Renata Foucre, has 22 puncture wounds on her left foot and a prescription for antibiotics to prove it.

And a colleague, Boca siren Missy Kehoe, found a 6-foot shark entangled in the fishnet costume she wore for her pictorial. That beast found its way out without hurting her.

"I'm not sure I'll ever do that again," Foucre said. "The shark definitely clamped down. There are bruises around each puncture wound, lined up from my toes to the ankle.

"I'm lucky he didn't thrash after he got me."

Foucre's mistake, said Nassau shark specialist David Eads, was to wear a flowing nightgown covered in sequins that sparkled like silvery small fry on a clear morning.

"The shark thought she was dinner but didn't like what it had bitten into," said Eads. "This was just a nibble."

For the past six years, Essick has been publishing artistic photos of women swimming with dolphins, moray eels, barracudas, stingrays and others. Until last week, he said, the worst injury had been a hickey-like stingray bite.

For the models, looking good is the tiniest of problems. They dive sometimes 50 feet deep without scuba gear. They breathe from a nearby helper's tank. And they have to open their eyes in salt water and make it look natural.

Off Nassau, Foucre was supposed to look like a ghostly but festive figure on the bow of a sunken freighter.

"As soon as she got in, the sharks were coming much closer than on the previous days," Essick said.

Said Foucre: "I felt something clamp down on my foot, so I calmly headed for the surface. I knew it was a shark because I saw their shadows and one bumped my foot before the other one bit me."

One might ask, Is this too much danger in the name of art?

"Anyone could get killed crossing the street, too," Essick said. "All I'm thinking about is going back to get better pictures."

source: http://www.palmbeachpost.com/

Views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of UnderwaterTimes.com, its staff or its advertisers.

Reader Comments

31 people have commented so far. cloud add your comment

Well, where is nude pic?
   comment# 1   - Serge · NYC · Oct 27, 2006 @ 11:24am

the prurient at heart can see Todd's nude pics at http://www.essickphoto.com/
   comment# 2   - jeff dudas · miami, fl · Oct 28, 2006 @ 1:42pm

less than intelligent photographer is going to get one of the girls seriously hurt if he doesn't learn what not to do underwater around sharks....
   comment# 3   - Robert Ballew · Long Beach, CA · Oct 28, 2006 @ 8:00pm

OKKKKKKKK were is the Nudity.........
   comment# 4   - Sal · Dubai · Oct 29, 2006 @ 11:32am

No blood and no nude girl whats the point of this topic????
   comment# 5   - parka_boy · Mexico · Oct 29, 2006 @ 1:22pm

If i caught her at the bar . . i'd throw her back too.
   comment# 6   - saontreazon · USA · Oct 30, 2006 @ 2:15pm

Lucky shark ...
   comment# 7   - Sandeep · Mumbai , india · Nov 15, 2006 @ 10:53am

The sharks were only biting because they don't have tongues!
   comment# 8   - Owen · Key Largo, U.S.A · Nov 17, 2006 @ 3:48pm

danger...bite...shark....blah..blah..blah...I just wanted to see some boobs.
   comment# 9   - Aaron · Columbus Ohio · Nov 26, 2006 @ 10:48am

Haha, so many little boys upset by no nudity :P This was about what happened, not the actual pictures. You can put your bits away now, lmao.
   comment# 10   - Dave · Kent, UK · Nov 27, 2006 @ 6:48am

Got to see the TV documentory on this was realy rapped and think the photos are just unreal, hope the sexy and lovely womens foot heals fast and keep up the good work.
   comment# 11   - Bevin Clement · AUSTRIA · Jan 6, 2007 @ 12:38pm

more power!
   comment# 12   - milkisedek ramos gonong · baguio central university philippines · Mar 10, 2007 @ 4:01am

how stupid can you be 1. the photographer should have known better and 2. the girl was stupid for accecpting something like that in the first place.
   comment# 13   - april · australia · May 13, 2007 @ 4:04pm

i agree she is a stupid model that wants to show off her anorexia body so sexy! yeah right shes ugly for being a model!
   comment# 14   - 420 girl · lincoln,NE · Jun 19, 2007 @ 10:28am

Hey hornblower would you throw a little boy back if you caught him?
   comment# 15   - Richard · SanDiego, Ca · Jun 22, 2007 @ 1:25pm

YIKES!!! That is one scary looking person in the underwater pic. Apart from the frightening looking concentration camp escapee in the underwater pic; I think the photographer's ideas are neat & I wish I could have such an opportunity to model with sharks, fish, and any and all other animals both in the water and on land. As long as there are animals involved I am happy. None of my photoshoot experiences have been so animal interactive though. But regardless of where, when, and what animals will be in the immediate area or part of a photoshoot, it is the responsibility of both photographer & model to have some general education about the species & how to act properly in the presence of such animals not only for the safety & well-being of the people doing the shoot but more importantly for the safety & best interest of the animals whose environment they are imposing upon.
   comment# 16   - SMP · Snohomish, WA. USA · Aug 2, 2007 @ 5:27am

well i guess the underwater creature must be quite turned on by her nudity
   comment# 17   - aida · singapore · Dec 12, 2007 @ 5:42am

I think she frightened the shark. It was simply fight or flight. Look at her!
   comment# 18   - T Mac · Hawaii · Dec 31, 2007 @ 1:39pm

I NEVER THINK SHE WAS NOT AFRAID, I AM PROUD OF HER SHE WORKED WITH THEM & GOT BITTEN BECAUSE SHE LOVED HER JOB
   comment# 19   - srinivas · karanatakastate india · Jan 9, 2008 @ 7:08am

as a diver and underwater photographer I can appreciate how hard it was for the model just to pose ... no mask, breath hold, loose clothing .. and by the way make it look natural while sharks are swimming around ... just an accident that the shark came close enought to catch the net ..but thats what nets do ..catch stuff .. awesome photos your all jealous :-)
   comment# 20   - Dave · Sydney Australia · Jan 30, 2008 @ 8:56pm

Idiots. Grow up. Get a life. So glad I'm not a man! You all are sooooo stupid! To think you are all so worked up over what? A female body? An ugly one at that? Do any of you have any standards? To be so consumed by testosterone that you get so out of control is hilarious! And they say women are controlled by emotion! What a joke. You all are pitiful!
   comment# 21   - Not brain-dead · Florida, USA · Jun 11, 2008 @ 10:42am

TODD HAPPENS TO PUSH THE ENVELOPE AND IS A GREAT PHOTOGRAPHER!!!!!! EVERYONE KNEW AHEAD OF TIME WHAT THEY WERE GETTING INTO! THERE WAS BACKUP SAFTEY DIVERS THERE AND IT WAS A FREAK ACCIDENT! THE PHOTOS ARE AMAZING AND PROB. THE BEST IN THE BUSINESS FOR THIS TYPE OF MODEL UNDERWATER PHOTOGRAPHY. I KNOW HIM PERSONALLY - AND HE DOES THIS FOR THE LOVE AND PASSON OF HIS JOB, NOT FOR THE MONEY.......OTHERWISE HE'D BE A RICH MAN!!!!!!!!CUT THE GUY SOME SLACK AND BUY HIS BOOK IT IS GREAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
   comment# 22   - LISA · WELLINGTON, FLORIDA · Jul 6, 2008 @ 8:08pm

This is quite silly of the sharks. Let their models and photographers come up out of the water to be seen with humans in their natural habitat. How the tables would turn, Mwoaaa haaa haaa haaa haa
   comment# 23   - George · US · Dec 1, 2008 @ 1:12pm

Todd IS a talented ***less than intelligent person*** Do you go outside in thunderstorms holding metal rods to avoid being hit by lighting? I dont know what else TODD couldve done to HELP his models get bitten except maybe throwing some blood in the water with them as well....DUH
   comment# 24   - old news · up ur butt · Jul 24, 2009 @ 11:31am

WHERE IS THE NUDITY IN THAT SIMPLE BUT ADVENTUROUS PICTURE?
   comment# 25   - AVI · INDIA · Nov 21, 2009 @ 9:27pm

whats this issue for..where s the nude pic there???????
   comment# 26   - joepex28 · philippines · May 25, 2010 @ 12:13am

heck if i were the shark i would have definitely chowed down on her feet meat. lol
   comment# 27   - steven · usa · Apr 16, 2011 @ 11:15pm

Ilove shark best actor long live shark i paryer u
   comment# 28   - Naseem ahmd baloch · Gwadar pakistan · May 23, 2011 @ 1:51am

i like this
   comment# 29   - rajeev mishra · india · Nov 12, 2011 @ 11:37am

I like this
   comment# 30   - rinku · delhi ,india · Dec 6, 2011 @ 1:18am

I LOVE EVERY THING UNDER THE WATER AND I LOVE WOMEN. THE WOMAN REPRESENT OR IS A SYMBOL OF MOST LIVING THINGS. I AM PART OF THE WATER-WORLD.
   comment# 31   - LIGHT-CHEERFUL BRIGGS · PORT-HARCOURT CITY, NIGERIA · Dec 21, 2011 @ 6:58am
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