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Artist - Buddy Group 2 - self portrait

By Pete      
Over the years I've taken loads of self portraits for magazine features and profile pages so this wouldn't be much of a challenge if I was to do the bog standard stuff, so I decided to try something a bit more daring. I've always considered myself scrawny - not a body to admire so putting myself on show is really pushing my boundaries. I'm inspired by Kitsch, Marla, Fishnet and Beckas.

I took two shots. One of me laid flat. The camera was positioned out of the upstairs window and triggered by wireless remote.

The second shot was taken with me holding the pad and pens. It's surprising how hard it is to get the positions right - full respect to the girls for their abilities in this element. It took several attempts.

I then blended the two using Photoshop layers and used a few filters to get the sketch book style on the pad. I like the Esher hands shot so used this as inspiration.

I'm not 100% happy with the positions but it's my first attempt. Hopefully not too scary Wink

For those who are not aware we've started a great new Critique club. This is for the second challenge. 7 members post a pic each and critique each other's work. It's a great motivational tool and I'd recommend others to join in. If you fancy having a go at self portraits now's your chance. Join the group...as I write this we have places in group five. See members meetings page for details.

Tags: Digitally manipulated Portraits and people Nude and glamour

Voters: Briwooly, martin.w, fauxtography and 26 more


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Comments


martin.w Plus
20 616 29 United Kingdom
14 Jul 2009 6:58PM
A great idea, though borderline needing an adult sticker.Wink Only a slight crit, the left foot on the drawing looks like it would actually be off the page, maybe a slightly less cluttered background too Smile
fauxtography 17 6.6k 36
14 Jul 2009 7:19PM
Painting tag? With a pencil? Tongue

I like the idea a lot and it shows you without showing you (i'll come to that later). As Martin pointed out there's a case for a less cluttered background, though it does place you in the back yard so i'd maybe be tempted to just lose the plastic chair. You need some shadows near your hands, the top one in particular, the grey tone of the "paper" lightens underneath it, and given the direction of light overall this looks a bit odd. The lower hand is better but still looks a tad odd.

For some reason the photo does have a slight air of Picasso, the shorts, tan and short hair does that i think. I bet you were summering in the south of France though Wink

Back to showing/not showing you... one thing I've heard said a few times is that in a portrait you should see the sitter not the photographer, now when we are both it asks questions about what part of that combo are we showing? Which is dominant and why...I like it as an idea but wonder if you are hiding, making it less of a self portrait (if that makes sense) through the process of creating it...anyway i digress.
14 Jul 2009 7:36PM
Yep, pretty unusual I'd say; have you been drinking Tango?? Orange skin, lol, or is it my screen? Your pencil hand looks a bit strange but covers the need for an adult tag at least. Would agree about the cluttered background tho'. I do rather like the 'showing and not showing' aspect tho', it adds a few questions and lends a wee bit of mystery to the shot; and I like the way you've made the viewer into the voyeur.

hope you are feeling better by the way??

helen
Coleslaw 17 13.4k 28 Wales
14 Jul 2009 7:48PM
Agree with what Martin and Mark said regarding the bg and the shadow.
I like the idea, though I didn't know you are a naturist... Tongue
chase Plus
17 2.4k 628 England
14 Jul 2009 10:25PM
A really good concept & a different way of doing a SP Pete.The drawing doesn't seem to fit into your hands though & looks a bit of an addition...Mark said it better than me Wink
I like the position in the frame..bg isn't a bonus...oh & your legs need shaving Wink
Hope you are feeling better after the op..
tigertimb 14 40 66 United Kingdom
14 Jul 2009 11:54PM
I've got this challenge to go Pete and am not looking forward to it Tongue

Thought I'd comment anyway, even though I'm not one of your buddies this month Wink

This is very brave and I love the inventiveness of it and think you've done well with the angle and making it a study of the artist at work - which I'm hoping reflects something of your character?

Just a couple of little thoughts from me:
I'd prefer not to be straight onto the pad which has quite a flat 2d feel at the moment
Not so sure about the background; I'd a least like to be able to imagine that the subject of the sketch is lying there being drawn, which I can't at the moment. So I'm wondering if it's feasible to include a 3rd Pete, with just a little of the original shot showing, or at least make the background plainer so it matches the background of the sketch?

That all being said; I think this is great and will pleased if I come up with anything nearly as good

Tim
funkeldink 18 1.6k 1 Australia
15 Jul 2009 1:49AM
just brilliant
cambsman 13 2 Cyprus
15 Jul 2009 6:21AM
Clever stuff, I wish my photoshop abilities were as good !
Pete 21 18.8k 97 England
15 Jul 2009 9:55AM
Thanks so far, some really good points made.

Thanks for the mod Mark. I've now uploaded the original unedited so you can see where the shadows really are. It's amazing how the change of shadows can affect how the hand is in relation to the paper. In your version the thumb is raised, whereas the original has the thumb firmly touching the paper.
It certainly needed them, and a good job done on adding them Smile

Looking back I definitely should have transferred the original shadows to the new version. I took the easy option.
tommythecat 15 149 2 United Kingdom
15 Jul 2009 10:49AM
Nicely done - just added the shadows back in from the original shot using a multiply layer as a mod

Edit: sorry just spotted that Mark had already done the same thing!
beckas 18 5 1 United States
15 Jul 2009 6:04PM
Very creative Pete! I am impressed and inspired. Smile
Paul Morgan 21 19.6k 6 England
15 Jul 2009 9:45PM
Interesting and well implemented Pete.

You could class this as an environmental type portrait and best understood by those closest to you like family and friends.

I`m seeing a rather quiet private man, maybe even just a little shy, if I`m right then I guess its a first class effort Smile
Picture_Newport 13 659 19 United Kingdom
17 Jul 2009 10:57PM
Without your explanation this appears at first glance as a fairly mundane shot, I must admit that I did not rush to critique it (and will probably do a fairly poor job of doing so Smile ).

But your explanation invites the viewer to study the image further, I really like the idea, but as Mark has said (and modified) the image does not ring true, the shadows are not right. Looking at some of the other manipulated images in your PF this one looks a little rushed at the processing stage, which is surprising as you obviously put a lot of thought and time into the idea and taking stages.

Marks mod is spot on, the shadows look more realistic.

I like the way you have turned the photograph into the sketch drawing, not something I have tried doing before.

Paul.
kitsch 16 439 4 United Kingdom
21 Jul 2009 7:51PM
am a bit late on this & not read the other crit yet either..

the positioning of your hands works so well re the Escher influence & also to preserve your dignity lol :-0)
if it were mine i would have cropped more square in keeping with the theme, probably around your armpit... hmm & i wonder if you tried a mono version just for the hell of it?
anyway, it's hard to do selfs & i think you've done a great job with this!

Smile
Jo
kitsch 16 439 4 United Kingdom
21 Jul 2009 8:21PM
hope you don't mond the mods
(i'm actually quite chuffed with the 2nd one lol)

and for my purposes it didn't matter so much about the shadows :-0)
Pete 21 18.8k 97 England
21 Jul 2009 8:24PM
Thanks all and for the mods.
Jo, even if you turn it upside down you won't see under the hand Wink
kitsch 16 439 4 United Kingdom
21 Jul 2009 8:27PM
:-p i've been sussed! LOL
rowarrior 14 4.4k 9 Scotland
29 Jul 2009 10:45PM
What a great idea, I was trying to work out if I could do something that didn't really have me in it as such, kind of picture of a picture thing, but my photoshop skills run to cloning out washing lines and a few curves (and not even so good at them lol).

My only complaint is that left thumb, which looks trully odd against the paper, almost as if the angle of the layer wasn't quite right, as the others have said, it's probably the shadows too, but the mathmetician in me thinks there was a bit of angle effect as well.

The mods are fun anyway Smile

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