For this shoot I was inspired by the season. In particular, a pear tree in my garden which has new buds shooting and a nearby tree, where some Magpies are busy building a nest to house their young.
Once again my friend Sophie was happy to model for me. I love to take her picture, she’s very photogenic and knows how to pose, as she has done plenty of modelling for other photographers. She loves anything creative and is a keen blogger, often writing about our adventures: http://sophielouiseanne.blogspot.co.uk/
The location was an easy choice as I have completed a shoot here before: http://traceywarbey.wordpress.com/2013/12/22/fairwell-to-autumn/ and it’s close to where we live.
We got there at dusk, having gone to another location for a different shoot: http://traceywarbey.wordpress.com/2014/03/31/what-pulls-us/ and quickly got Sophie prepared.
I wanted her to represent a bud, so needed her in a folded position. I also wanted her to look as pale as possible, so we covered her in flour, which is a very cheap and effective prop to use. Earlier that day, I had gathered some twigs from my garden to place in her hair to resemble the nest.
The preparation and positioning took time. I wanted the composition to be perfect but the light was fading very quickly. I realised that although I had my flash with me, the batteries were dead, so I had to increase my exposure compensation in order to take the shot. This in itself caused problems in post processing due to excess noise in the image, which had to be rectified.
The following settings were used: ISO 6400, 50mm, f/1.8, 1/60sec.
There are a set number of steps I tend to use in post. I mainly adjust colours in curves, increase the contrast and add dodge and burn to bring out the shadows and the highlights. On this image I used a texture as an overlay to make the background darker and used a layer mask to hide Sophie, as I wanted her to stand out as much as possible (being the main focus in the frame). After a small amount of skin smoothing to finish, I added a vignette. A popular effect amongst photographers as it draws the eye into the centre of the frame….
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Thanks for reading!! :-)
Beautiful image! :)