Thursday, December 1, 2011

A day in Southern MD!

So back in November I spent the day visiting some good friends and doing some family portraits for them.  They were great sports and their two little boys were so fun to shoot.  We didn't spend too much time shooting, but hey when there are little ones involved if you don't get it in the first hour it's best to take a break and start again another day.  This is why I enjoy shooting for friends, they know that I will gladly come back again and again to visit and shoot if their little ones just aren't feeling it that day.  For those photographers that make a living at this I can't imagine how stressful it can be when you have a set amount of time to make the magic happen.  Me shooting friends is just as much about spending a day visiting with them as it is taking pictures.  I am still working through the images but here is a sample.

Now as I was editing this image I stumbled across something.  Might as well add a bit about my post processing here.  So the image you see above was shot digitally and converted to B&W (I know shocker that I would do that).  Anyway as is often typical, the sky doesn't always cooperate on the days when you have a shoot.  So when I converted this to B&W I created a duplicate layer and worked with the contrast on the sky using a curves adjustment layer.  Essentially I darkened the sky and increased the contrast to make it more dramatic and also give the image the impression it was shot near sunset.  In fact it was shot mid afternoon.  So then I used a layer mask to allow the adjusted sky to show through.  So then I accidentally turned off the layer containing the family in B&W and let the original color image show through and ended up with this:

So now I have the original color image (adjusted a bit with a slight sepia tone) and the background is in B&W.  I know I know!  I am not the first person to have color in a B&W image.  And yes in the scope of my typical photography this is just a nice family portrait.  But since that is exactly what I was attempting to create I am happy with the results.  The all B&W image is exactly what I envisioned while shooting.  All that said for some reason I have been stuck looking at the image directly above and I can't quite figure out why.

For some reason having the color foreground and B&W background give the image an enhanced feeling a two dimensionality (is that even a word) that I find interesting.  The color also enhances the "All American" family vibe if you will (I can't quite figure out how to really explain what I mean by that).  The background fades as a strong part of the image, unlike in the all B&W image above where the viewer is drawn to the image as a whole. 

Anyway I am just shocked that I am drawn to any color at all and I should probably go see a Dr. ASAP.  That said does anyone have any thoughts on the color, love it, hate it, why?

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