Tuesday, August 21, 2007

The Un-reality of Shay

The camera (and all the lights and equipment that go along with it) can only create the rough draft of any given image. The finalized version occurs in the darkroom, or in this day and age, the computer. Every image I make is perfected in Photoshop using dozens of different techniques, but usually I try to keep the edits hidden and indistinguishable. That was not the case for this series of shots, but you may be surprised to learn that the image of Shay in the lake required virtually no Photoshop other than some color correction and exposure adjustments. That's because most of the work for this image was done right there on the shore of the lake just after sunset.

It was a team effort. I had my camera on a tripod partially in the pond and set the exposure to a full 30 seconds, immediately after hitting the button Chris, my assistant, manually fired the flash at Shay. Then she got out of the water and Chris flashed the now empty lake. We then painted the shore and water with flashlights giving it that orangish glow. Of course we did this dozens of times and by the end Shay had become fairly adept and getting in and out of the mud fairly fast!