November 15, 2010

black snake moan


|everything is hotter down south|

Only by attempting the seemingly impossible one can evolve. This is what I thought when I conceived my “Black Snake Moan” homage. But first things first. I met the model, Melanie, at a get together of the german internet platform model-kartei.de. She somehow reminded me of Christina Ricci and I went up to her and asked her if she was interested in a project of mine. I mailed her the poster whose style I wanted to achieve. She was excited and agreed immediately. So we had a month and a half for preparation. She really got into style and outfit, I busied myself with the right lighting and, last but not least, with the composition. The latter would be a hard one for me since I never did any advanced Photoshop composing. So I started reading and watching various tutorials and experimented with composing doing some self-portraits.

The shooting part was easy. I know that “I’ve chained a young girl in my cellar.” sounds a little bit offensive, but that’s exactly what I did *g*. With a little help of a friend of hers we quickly achieved the wanted shots and experimented a bit deviating from the template. After 1 ½ hours we were done. I started editing the results about a week later. First I was trying different methods to extract the subject from the initially white background. Then came the hard part. I knew exactly what look I wanted to achieve, but I didn’t have the slightest idea of how to get there. I tried different textures, filters and color corrections. And after hours and hours of work, a lot of trial and error and many, many layers, I finally got to where I wanted to be. There will be 2 or 3 more pictures of the same style. I’m sure they will not be as nearly as time consuming as the first.

Looking back I probably should have chosen a different, not so difficult project to get into composing. But believe me, nothing is more satisfying than the feeling to have succeeded alone. The learning curve was very steep, but what one has climbed once, nobody can take away :-)

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