Monday, 13 September 2010

Making of: Spines to rest your spine

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A little bit of background...

So, I had the best weekend of my life. Not only did I get to photograph Maroon 5 at legendary Abbey Road Studios on Saturday (photos to come later! :D) but on Friday, I had the most fun-filled day, with the most interesting, fascinating, colourful person I have ever met. And he's what inspired this picture.

Monkeyboy:

Okay, so the shot itself:

First off, it was raining. Heavily! Don't let it put you off!
I put my coat over my camera on tripod, and took about 10-15books with me into the woods.


I took around 30 images of books in 2s, 3s and 4s, each of them getting higher and higher in an arc like shape to be blended together later.

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apologies for the next photo, it's not as weird as it looks. what i'm doing here is placing a book under each section of my body that is going to be resting on a book later on. this way the shadows and folds on the material/my face/hair are as natural as possible and will blend in well and look realistic. I'm pulling a strange face because you never know which face pic you'll end up using... it wasn't this one :P

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Then I got some shots balancing on a branch of my feet and legs above ground. Because I was on my own and it was wet and cold there's no oppurtunity to do any real "levitiation" methods, because no one was about to hold me up and the branch was all I had to work with. So instead, I pieced my body together little by little (as you'll see later). Here's a foot shot

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This next shot is the face shot I ended up using. I used different hair and cut off everything from the next down, but I find it so important to think in elements when I'm taking a shot

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and here's how levitation is usually done - by propping yourself up somehow/getting someone to hold you in various positions and blending them together. unfortunately this position didn't work for this shot so it was rendered useless to me, however i am posting it regardless because i look mega strong

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Finally, here are some photos I took on my iPhone while I was editing all the shots together...

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as you can see, every single limb is missing to start with. That's why it's so important never to delete a single shot because you never know what you might use it for - I constructed my tummy from part of an arm I think, because I didn't take any of my tummy in that position. I took a hand from a shot where i'm randomly holding up a book, which I would never usually have used but it worked really well.

Colour wise, I first deepened the yellows and brought up the reds, adding a little bit of green curve. I then desaturated the greens overall just a tad andf fixed the book colours to make it less noticeable that there were so many Harry Potters in there!!!

Just incase that shot didn't work (as you can tell by the outtakes, I wasn't hopeful), I took another simplified one:

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and did some quick headshots just for funsies because my hair was SO frizzy from the rain!!
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the end!

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wheee

21 comments:

  1. You have so much patience. This has got to be one of my favorites!

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  2. Awesome, you're so talented...

    I love all this, and thanks for the tips, just in case one day I try something like this... :-P

    Take care!

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  3. I'm amazed by your creative genius and the patience it must have taken for you to piece everything bit by bit from multitudes of different pics!! Love the head shot as well! Beautiful. :-)

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  5. It's fantastic...so much work..and I think that's lovely to show others how you do things...there's not very much such a kind people.

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  6. I agree! Thanks for showing us behind the scenes.

    I have one question - how do you manage to get the cutout bits to blend together so well? Do you feather the edges of the selections? Blur the edges?

    Thanks!

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  7. Beautiful!!

    How did you do the head stand shot on the pile of wood (before the frizzy hair shot)?

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  8. Lovelovelove this! The idea behind it is great, and the colour tone in the images is so beautiful!

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  9. Thank you so much for putting this up, a lot of photographers don't like to share this kind of information, that;s why we love you :)

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  10. wow good work!! how did you do the second from last photo?! that looks amazing!! you are so pretty!! xx

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  11. amazing!
    How many picture did you bland together for this image?

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  12. Thanks so much! I've always wondered how you do your levitation shots. I had some idea but wanted more direction! This def helps! You should totally made a massive book one day- I'd buy it in a sec. I already have your other one! But I wish it had more how to's. I feel like someone could learn infinitely from you. Wish you offered online classes for those of us in the US!

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  13. This is absolutely amazing!!! And I love how you do the tutorial! Its crazy to see how you work and what goes on in your head to get the right shot! By the way...the headshot is absolutely and unbelivably the most beautiful and stunning headshot EVER!!! You are beautiful!!

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  14. Wow! That's quite the process to achieve that final photo! You're really patient and talented!

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  15. you have an incredible amount of patience! love the title of the photo.

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  16. Thanks for sharing your knowledge!

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  17. Rosie.. you're just awesome.
    I would never have thought what a huge mess of work was necessary for this shot. I thought about someone was holding you etc. But now I admire it all the more. Thank you for sharing the tutorial - it's great to see how you work.
    And.. like Kayla said before: The headshot SO beautiful.

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  18. wooow. all i have to say is... holy sh**! you are one amazing (and patient!) lady!

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  19. thank you so much for the link! i love the Scala and Kolacny brothers now. I've been listening to them over and over! Now i'm going through your archives to find me some more nice music :)

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  20. M'lady you are so crazy brilliant it's silly really...

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