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They Are Coming...

By ChiliMan
My first experiment with self-portraiture (profile pic not counting!) and lighting.

I took several shots last night in my room. There was me sitting on the bed, the camera sitting on a tripod - flash disabled, and my little bendy clip-on reading light (the type you clip onto a book while youíre reading in bed) shining a little light on my face from the right.

When I looked at the shots on the computer, they were mostly all black. But once I pushed lightness (not brightness) up to 100%, I appeared in the picture. Just barely, though. I fiddled with gamma correction and contrast and liked what I ended up with.

It looked - to me - like someone hiding in a basement from, say, a hostile alien invasion. Or just someone hiding from any threat closing in, really.

Iím thinking of doing a short series on these. Gonna go fiddle with the other shots now and see if I have anything there.

Hope youíve all been having a great weekend!


Tags: Portraits and people Flash and lighting

Voters: BigBenn, kitsch, andrewrobson and 12 more

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BigBenn 12 2
10 Sep 2006 11:04AM
I Like the idea. If your going to go along the lines of someone hiding in a basement, maybe try having a slit of light, either vertical or horizontal, as if it were coming in from the edges of a door, and maybe have a little more expresion on your face. I look forward to seeing the next ones. Alex

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kitsch 12 439 4 United Kingdom
10 Sep 2006 11:10AM
very ominous and emotive, worked well!

ChiliMan 11 135 17 Singapore
10 Sep 2006 12:24PM
Thanks for the suggestions, Alex. So nice of you to take the time. Although, I'll be honest...I wasn't going for a basement thing or anything! (lol)

I basically thought I'd try my hand at self-portraits and low light and see what happened. The moment I arrived at this final image, my first thought was someone hiding in a bunker. But I didn't wanna give the pic a war slant and so I went with someone looking out a basement window at menacing creatures closing in.

But I'm so glad you mentioned the slits of light...'cos I'd like to try that as well as light coming in through my blinds.

As for the rest of this series, most were poor and so I chucked 'em.

There are two I'm happy with (one not so much but it'll still go up) so those will go up tomorrow and Tuesday.

Thanks again, Alex.
ChiliMan 11 135 17 Singapore
10 Sep 2006 12:26PM
Thank you, Jo! I like that you found it ominous!! I wasn't sure how it would go down it being so dark 'n' all...but it lost too much when I tried to brighten it.
10 Sep 2006 1:20PM
Very well done on your first self portrait... I like it. Also just read your PF: welcome back to the magic of photography and keep at it.
ChiliMan 11 135 17 Singapore
10 Sep 2006 1:43PM
Awww...thanks so much, Andrew.

And now that I'm done thanking myself...
BruceC 12 171
10 Sep 2006 2:13PM
Subtle - very subtle.
PatrickSmith 13 1.2k 2 United States
10 Sep 2006 4:11PM
There is a certain aura of mystery in this portrait. Who know what lurks off to the left of the frame!
PLCimagery 11 77 1 England
10 Sep 2006 7:53PM
great effect!
KKmoments 11 12 1 United Kingdom
10 Sep 2006 8:09PM
Great 1st portrait... lighting effect worked really well added to the mystery of puzzling what you were looking at lol Smile
ChiliMan 11 135 17 Singapore
10 Sep 2006 11:30PM
Thank you SO much for all your comments. So encouraging!!

Although, the rest of the shots I took were pretty useless (except for one other)...but hey, 2 out of 7 ain't bad. Besides, it was fun trying it out.

Ok...gonna upload the other one now!

MarieL 11
11 Sep 2006 4:48PM
I think this photo is great.I agree with you that photography opens your eyes to the world around you.It's great you've rediscovered it.I agree this is a smashing site and offers loads of encouragement, inspiration and advice to novices like me.Thanks too for your support.
ChiliMan 11 135 17 Singapore
11 Sep 2006 8:34PM
I gotta tell you, Marie...for a novice, you have a fantastic sense and feel of light. The pictures of your niece, your bro and Hamish illustrate this.

Looking forward to more from you!
4 Feb 2007 11:32PM
gorgeous...perfect expression

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