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Pairc Life II

By Camairish    
Another composite using the same 'room' as my last upload, a scaled re-construction of an abandoned croft house room I photographed a couple of years ago, made to look like it is still lived in.
The room was photographed with a single light source coming through a window (out of shot) to the left.
The model was photographed separately, keeping the lighting in the same direction, and added in Photoshop. Shadows added manually. I'm going to add a 'female' figure between the table and sink when I get time too.
As of last time, I would really appreciate your input with this technique.
The aim is to produce an image that makes the viewer look twice to try & figure out what is going on.

Tags: General

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mrswoolybill Plus
13 1.9k 2163 United Kingdom
12 Apr 2015 5:50PM
Definitely better without the stiff fabric of the doll's house curtains!

Objects are starting to look a bit more randomly, casually placed, less regimented.

It still looks very uncluttered. Pictures on the walls perhaps?

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paulbroad 12 131 1288 United Kingdom
12 Apr 2015 7:49PM
Quite a good effort but realistic? I don't really know what a croft looks like internally so I'm probably very wring, but this place doesn't look lived in. A bit too clean and clinical.

The image is not critically sharp overall, but as such may well be due to excessive compression.

pamelajean Plus
14 1.3k 2116 United Kingdom
12 Apr 2015 8:01PM
I think the man sitting at the table and reading a paper is a good idea, Ian, as he seems to "fit" more comfortably within the scene than your man did before.
In fact, it's looking quite "real".

I have done a simple modification where I used perspective correction to straighten the line of the ceiling and the line of the right-hand door.
Otherwise, I can't really fault it, except that the edge of his foot looks a bit soft. Even if he's just in his socks, I think the line should be clearer because the shadow goes off to the right.

What does "Pairc" mean?

Camairish 14 1.4k Scotland
12 Apr 2015 8:42PM
Brilliant feedback again - Pairc (also called South Lochs) is the region of south east Lewis where I photographed the house that this composite series is based on.

Moira & Paul - some of these homes most likely were quite spartan regarding decoration, particularly in the Protestant northern islands, but I think you're right, still looks too 'staged'.

I'm taking all the advice on board and will carry on working on the method.

TanyaH Plus
17 1.3k 409 United Kingdom
13 Apr 2015 9:54AM
Hi Ian - I did look at this yesterday, but didn't comment at the time as I wanted to think it over a bit before doing so Smile It's hard to critique these creations, to be honest, because they're exactly that ... a creation. If it were a scene in reality, it's easier to pick up on what works and what doesn't. Non-reality is difficult because we have to imagine where things like shadows would be, depending on the light intensity and direction etc.

So ... in addition to the great observations above, I think that the one thing I'll add (and it was something I noticed yesterday that stood out for me) is that the guy's face seems to have conflicting light, given that the light source is behind him through the windows. Not by a lot, admittedly, but I'm wondering whether a slight shading on his stomach area and face would embed him more in the image?

Looking at where the light is entering (from the left, behind him) and trying to visualise how it would naturally fall, his face seems to have light coming towards it from the viewer's perspective as well, and yet there's nothing on either the floor, or in the direction of the shadows on the other objects in the room, to give this credence. For example, his shadow on the wall would indicate (to me, anyway) a light source from, say, the bottom left corner somewhere as well, but there's no soft shadows going in the same direction from the legs of the table or the chairs ... Also, his shadow is soft (indicating a diffused light source) whereas the shadows from the legs of the table/chairs are hard edged, indicating a much more direct, point light source. Might it be better to have them (the shadows) either all soft edged, or all hard edged?

Don't know what you think? One of the reasons I may be picking up on that is because I'm currently reading about matching light sources, light intensity, light colour etc when doing compositiong ... so I'm probably overthinking it no end, but it is the one thing that I keep coming back to.

Got to admit, though - these creations of yours are brilliant and definitely give me ideas for my own stuff and also about the 'integrity' and realism of a constructed scene. It's not about plonking stuff together and hoping it works ... there's a hell of a lot of thought and skill goes into creating a scene like this, where the viewer suspends belief in reality because what they're looking at is actually so good Grin

Camairish 14 1.4k Scotland
13 Apr 2015 2:25PM
Cheers Tanya - valuable input again. The model did have a continuous light directed at his front with the strobe fired from over his right shoulder. Without the front light his face was in too much shade but I take your point about the 'light balance'.

The shadows are the hardest bit to get right and at the moment I'm 'guessing' where they should lie. What would work better would be to place a miniature model person in the room scene & take a shot to get a better idea of where shadows fall, intensity etc. Then re-shoot the scene without the model etc.

I'll keep plugging away as I'm not happy with it yet - hopefully post again in a few weeks time!!

TanyaH Plus
17 1.3k 409 United Kingdom
13 Apr 2015 3:06PM
It's never an easy process but I think that you, being a perfectionist, will get to a point where you ARE happy with it. You could always do a bit of judicious burning in of the front area of the chap ... ??

Doing a 'working' shot with a model person in place of the real one is a really good idea, as it'll let you see where the shadows fall and then use that as a guide to do the lighting on your real person to match.

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