Inspiration is like a moment of awakening, like a lightening bolt that hits you on the top of the head and then travels through to your stomach swirling around and shooting little bolts of energy and tingles through your body. Is that what drives us, is it the adrenaline and excitement when that moment strikes. You can’t even think about eating, a day can go by and you don’t even give it a thought, there is no hunger when you are flying on the adrenaline train! It can strike at any moment and anywhere and usually when you are least looking for it.
This is what happened to me, whilst sat at my desk, looking at a blank screen. Knowing I need to write, there are Blogs to write, time’s running out, not knowing what to write first…why is writing so hard, my mind is searching but avoiding what I need to be doing. As you can see my desk is all packed up because we are in the process of packing, we move house the day after the Degree Show. So finding the headspace to write has been difficult recently.
Then a petal from my beautiful flowers that were bought as a gift from a wonderful friend floated down next to me.
And then I was on that train, the whooshing in my stomach and tingling feeling all over as the idea explodes in my mind. A little baby curled up in the soft enclosure of the petal. Surrounded by nothing, a pure angelic image of a little life as it falls into our world.
Writing??? That can wait, when an idea strikes you have to run with it, never let it pass!
It was in the evening, light was limited and all my equipment was in the studio still except one camera and a 50mm lens…. so that was going to have to do! I quickly ran round the house to find the window that had the most light coming through and set up a mini studio with 2 pieces of white A4 paper.
Light was disappearing fast, I had to use a higher ISO than I would have liked so there was going to be grain in the image but I’d compensate for that later. I shot the petal from lots of different angles and a few different apertures to get varying DOF.
This composite was going to be a different process to my previous ones, normally I would photograph the background and then photograph the baby accordingly to fit with that. In this case I was going to use a baby from a shoot that I did last year, I knew which one the moment the petal fell next to me on the desk, I didn’t even bother to check before I photographed the petal… which in hindsight I probably should have? That’s the sensible thing to do but I maybe had 15 mins of light left so I wasn’t going to waste that time hunting for the photo.
I placed my mini studio at a 45 degree angle to the window light because this is generally how I light babies in the studio.
Once I was happy with the selection of images that I had taken the hunt was on for the baby image I had in mind:
Beautiful little Arabella!
I started the compositing at 7pm:
And finished at 11pm.
I used the same methods as in my previous composites, selecting parts of each of the images and adding them in as layers and painting the areas that I wanted with layer masks. I also used CURVES & HUE/SATURATION LAYERS, and the DODGE & BURN tools to enhance areas.
This image was created purely from the inspiration of a falling petal, there was no planning, no theory, no searching for a concept. It was the result of a visual that presented itself to me and all I did was bring it to life. These creations are always the most enjoyable, I almost feel like I have no part in them… they make themselves.
I completed the edit in an evening because I knew that if I wanted to get this made into wall art it would need to be ordered by morning. There is a company that I registered with that day – C41, based in Ellesmere Port and they said they would be able to turnaround within 5 days if I collected… so that was the plan.
In contrast to my series Creation, Growth & Nurture which were all very dark on Mounted Boards with dark edges this needed to be produced with a softer finish. I have chosen the 20×20″ Birch Circle from C41 which I think will work really nice.
It has been sent into production and will be ready for me to collect the day before the Degree Show… so I will be doing some last-minute hanging on thursday afternoon! 😀