Jan 6, 2011

Mother and Child

There's nothing better than capturing feelings in a photograph. This is the holy grail for photographers--to create an image showing emotion and moment and, most importantly, have it be natural looking. 

In this picture, K is nuzzling on little S who is just a handful of days old. K has been toting her around for the last forty weeks, of course, but it's awesome to watch them develop a relationship together that involves more than rough pokes in the tummy at all hours of the night.

Nikon D700, 70-200mm f/2.8 VR lens @ 125mm, f/8.0, 1/200s, ISO 400, SB-600 through Zumbrella.
When making this portrait I knew I wanted to show mother bundling daughter in close, both protectively and tenderly. K had brought along her beautiful pashmina and it's tones and texture really complimented the feel of this image. Next, the focus had to be clearly on the forms of the two of them wrapped up together, so I used my favorite red filtered monochrome settings in the camera to eliminate distractions from K's beautiful blond hair, the periwinkle blue pashmina, and, fortunately, the veins in little S's skin. Still, to further focus attention on their faces, I positioned my strobe high and slightly to to the right, fired through an umbrella to soften and sculpt the light (I use a Zumbrella, however, the exact same one is a much better value directly from Westcott--let me know if you want one 'cause I think I'll order another this week). I chose an umbrella in this case because it allows the light to fall off the edges of the pictures so nicely, giving a natural vignette. In post production, I gently increased the falloff of light with a little more vignette, softened the pashmina, brightened a little stripe of hair, and removed creases from the pashmina that were slightly distracting from the faces. It turned out just as I envisioned, and I hope K likes it.