As somebody who has a back ground and interest in mathematics, physics, mechanical engineering, computer programming & management I enjoy organizing (or trying to organize) my thoughts, my work etc … not obsessively but just enough to be able to label theses sectors and use these labels in my communications with others … (so what you read is just a personal opinion and not a universal definition )
1. Fine Art Nude:(sub categories: abstract nude, body-scapes, conceptual etc.)
Typically with classic compositions, aesthetics and concepts. Usually without showing the face of subject or focusing on it (as we are trying to keep them appealing to a larger audience). It could be shot indoor, in studio or on location. Usually it is not a sexual image. These are the shots that traditionally, a majority of people wouldn’t mind exhibiting them on their walls and art/photography galleries can sell them easier.
2. Nude Portrait: (too many sub categories exist for this one )
Portraiture work that the subject happens to be nude in it. These are not usually sexual shots either. The personality of the subject should be the main attraction. Nudity could be used to emphasize the character or create a subtle shock value or to get rid everyday masks and distractions. You might find the subject attractive of course but that hasn’t been the main intention.
3. Glamour Nude: ( Sub categories: Sensual Nude, Pin Up Nude, Fashion Nude, beauty nude etc.)
The beauty and attractiveness of the subject is usually the main goal. These are more sensual than sexual shots. Subjects usually are shown in the best way possible.
4. Editorial Nude : (Sub Categories: Fashion Nude, Erotic Nude etc.)
Editorial Nude shots try to tell a story or imply a mood/plot … within a fashion concept, they might try to sell a lifestyle or fantasize about it … fashion, editorial, glamour and subtle erotic shots at times are highly interchangeable.
5. Erotic Nude: ( Sub categories: Fashion Nude, Fetish Nude, Pornography etc.)
Erotic & Erotica are different things to different people. Some might find a simple nude (or fully dressed) portraiture an erotic image. Some people might prefer a direct approach or a hint. That’s why it is hard to define when an image is no longer an erotic photo and it is pure porn. I tend to think, there is more to the story than just sex in Erotic photos. They tend to be more psychological.
6. Documentary Nude: (sub categories: Candid, Journalistic etc. )
These might be fun candid nude shots, or sad journalistic ones or simply documentary shots of say a nudist colony. They can be sexual or have nothing to do with that at all.
as you can see there are lots of overlaps between various styles of Nude, specially in my own work … however this is helpful to me on some level… so I thought why not to share with you nice people.