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Sugar & Spice

By Nick_w      
An image from a personal project - this is my 10 year old daughter Heather ( no doubt when she reads this she will point out shes 11 next week!), caught in a very rare moment when she is not trying to be grow up too fast.

The large version has more details

Lighting details:

One SB900 with diffuser in the back of the "Sylvanian Family" house (not a dolls house I'm told!)
Sealed as much as possible to avoid light spills (must try harder !)
Black bed sheet from Primark for back drop
1 x eBay trigger (wouldn't work in CLS mode as sensor is hidden)
Light (I think) set to 1/64 power
1/60sec @ F8 (ISO 200)

And a lot of trial and error, trying to get the house front and toys not "blowing" but retain features in Heathers face was extremely difficult.

There are two areas I wasn't 100% happy with (even on the back of the camera) one was the extreme brightness on the toy in heathers hand. I retrieved quite a bit in the RAW - and mono conversion, the other is the shadow of Heathers Glasses, trying to keep her attention for any length of time was hard to say the least ! I had some where the shadow was less intrusive but the expression didn't work, others with more detail, but I lost the facial details. I could have combined images but I wanted something natural and more or less what I attained in camera.

Tags: Black and white Portraits and people Flash and lighting

Voters: sut68, newy17, jenquest and 49 more

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sut68 14 2.0k 76 England
8 Oct 2009 9:08AM
Probably not going to attract the attention it deserves from the thumbnail. Love the innocence of her expression and the concentration.

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Nick_w Plus
11 4.3k 99 England
8 Oct 2009 9:15AM
Thankyou Paul much appreciated, I knew it wouldn't really attract from the thumbs this was only really meant for a print for home, but I thought I might as well give it an airing.
BERTRAM 10 United Kingdom
8 Oct 2009 9:19AM
Excellent work.
angej 13 479 United Kingdom
8 Oct 2009 9:34AM
Nice one Nick, looks great in B&WSmile
Nick_w Plus
11 4.3k 99 England
8 Oct 2009 9:44AM
Thanks Dave & Ange
mrswoolybill Plus
11 1.2k 1929 United Kingdom
8 Oct 2009 9:49AM
Really intriguing, coordination between eye and hands with black void in between. Love the isolation of detail.
I hit sixty on Saturday and I've managed to avoid growing up so far...
Nick_w Plus
11 4.3k 99 England
8 Oct 2009 10:02AM
Thanks Moira, she's a great kid ... most of the time .. and is very mature for her age. You're right we should all try to retain that spark of youth.

EDIT: Thats a big surprise Pete, thank you Smile
LesF 11 182 9
8 Oct 2009 10:11AM
The detail in the large is just about right Nick, love the title and congrats on the HC mate.

Nick_w Plus
11 4.3k 99 England
8 Oct 2009 10:18AM
Thanks Les and yes I am (I saw the fleeting comment Wink )
Richsr 11 91 223 England
8 Oct 2009 10:56AM
Well worth viewing large for he details in this - lovely concept Nick an d well executed.
Well deserved HC.
Regards Richard.
Hanners Plus
12 875 10 Ireland
8 Oct 2009 11:00AM
this is excellent and LARGE is an absolute must, well done on the HC too Smile
LesF 11 182 9
8 Oct 2009 11:01AM

Quote:yes I am (I saw the fleeting comment

realised after writing that there were already 4 there, drrrrr

Nick_w Plus
11 4.3k 99 England
8 Oct 2009 11:05AM
That fact alone Les should really tell me something, something you have been saying for some time!
Buffalo_Tom 11 2.3k 9 Wales
8 Oct 2009 11:12AM
Fabulous Nick.
Coleslaw 12 13.4k 28 Wales
8 Oct 2009 11:19AM
Excellent Nick!
Want to teach me? Smile
Nick_w Plus
11 4.3k 99 England
8 Oct 2009 11:21AM
I've got a lot to learn believe me Cole
digipix76 11 577 England
8 Oct 2009 12:11PM
Cracker Nick.

Nick_w Plus
11 4.3k 99 England
8 Oct 2009 1:11PM
To expand on Coles request: I pretty much got the exposure I wanted by using one of Heathers Soft toys (actually one of those was quite good) however as the light was coming from a very small opening it made it very hard and the area that illuminated her face was very tight - there were a lot of wasted exposures when part of her face wasn't illuminated. There were some more from this day using other props that may get an airing.
dathersmith 11 559 12 United Kingdom
8 Oct 2009 1:32PM
Well thought out and executed Nick, congrats on the HC too.

Nick_w Plus
11 4.3k 99 England
8 Oct 2009 1:55PM
Thanks Darren
andy_AHG 9 106 6 United Kingdom
8 Oct 2009 2:03PM
Excellent image Nick. Don't be too harsh on yourself. Shadows on the glasses are innevitible with single source directional lighting and the burn out on the toys in her hand add an almost glowing quality to the image... almost like a science project! All round top notch image mate.

Nick_w Plus
11 4.3k 99 England
8 Oct 2009 2:10PM
Thanks Andy, and thanks for the kind words. Its just when I do any image I always say to myself, right next time what would I do differently? and what have I learned? Particularly with flash as its completely new to me - I don't just do it with my own on any image that I like I try to analyse what I like about it and why and what would I change. Its probably my scientific background coming out.



P.S Thanks for the idea it gives me another idea to work on, now where can I get some test tubes ?
martinl 14 269 2 United Kingdom
8 Oct 2009 2:25PM
Well done on the HC Nick. I'm sure that your daughter will be well chuffed she made an HC!!
This is something I just don't really do, and that is take enough pcitures of my daughters! I know I'll regret it in the future (I do now!!)
MikeH 13 217 4 United Kingdom
8 Oct 2009 2:39PM
Like the concept Nick , congrats on the HC. I would not have the patience for this so 10/10/for effort ,
chase 12 1.1k 246 England
8 Oct 2009 4:49PM
Something a bit different from you Nick & it has worked well.She looks so into what she is doing,putting things just where they should be.
Nice conversion & well done with the lighting.
I'm sure Heather will like it.
Well done Smile
Nick_w Plus
11 4.3k 99 England
8 Oct 2009 5:21PM
Thanks everyone

Quote:She looks so into what she is doing,putting things just where they should be.

That was only for artistic purposes, I'll give you two guesses who had to clear it all away .. Everything was forgotten when Hannah Montana started
TrevBatWCC Plus
9 12 12 England
8 Oct 2009 5:40PM
Looks good to me, Nick, despite your exposure problems. Very lovely tones, excellent.
TrevB Smile
LesF 11 182 9
8 Oct 2009 6:28PM

Quote:despite your exposure problems

Trevor told you not to mention that, you know the problem nudge nudge.

MrsS 11 4.5k 18 England
8 Oct 2009 7:52PM
Trial & Error certainly played off - - sometimes it's hard to remember that they are just little girls really - - we seem to expect sooooooooooo much from them.

Well done, and congrats on the HC Smile

Fran x
Nick_w Plus
11 4.3k 99 England
9 Oct 2009 8:33AM
PMSL at Les .

Your so right Fran but despite that we have been so proud of Heather this last week she has shown maturity way beyond her years.
pennyspike 15 2.1k 29 United Kingdom
10 Oct 2009 12:45AM
It took a lot of looking at but well worth it as it gradually 'unfolded' into a most delightful study of childhood.
Nick_w Plus
11 4.3k 99 England
10 Oct 2009 8:56AM
Thanks Penny
ringyneck 11 315 18 United Kingdom
11 Oct 2009 11:43AM
Outstanding image...........

......... this is my 10 year old daughter Heather ( no doubt when she reads this she will point out shes 11 next week!).........and as she has got you an HC I think it deserves an extra special pressie.

HowardA 11 231
13 Oct 2009 12:18AM
Well done Nick. Much credit for trying something different - and perservering. And an HC too - you see it ain't all bad!!
I'm liking the light streaming out of the house - nice job!
17 Oct 2009 6:48AM
What an amazing image, great work indeed and a well deserved HC Award !

Nick_w Plus
11 4.3k 99 England
20 Oct 2009 7:47PM
Thanks Chris Howard & Keith

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