April 11, 2004

Miranda and Monique in Blind Light

When we'd purchased our Moncton home, I realized it would be a very different space to photograph in then the place we'd lived in Halifax. The sky-light in the bathroom is sorely missed and the flexibility of living on the top floor (meaning that models could work right beside windows, even in standing poses) would be lost as well. All that being said, I knew the kitchen in the new house, which faced east, would work well for morning light, and suspected the living room, with three large windows, would work for afternoon light. I worked with the kitchen shortly after all the moving dust settled, but it was only this session, eight months after we moved in, that I had the opportunity to try to work with models in the afternoon light in the living room.
Digital original
Because the room is at street level, we had to either work at floor level (which severely limited the possibilities in the way of posing), or use the aluminum blinds in the windows to restrict the outside view in. This had the added bonus of changing the direct sunlight (which I usually find frustrating to work with) into a very interesting striated pattern, which worked well with the models' forms.
Digital original
At the start of the session, unsure how things would progress, I hung up a white sheet as a backdrop and, while it did help a little in the way of simplifying the background, it didn't really change the images much; there was just so much contrast between the sunlight and shadow. I quickly let go of any hope of having shadow detail in the images, and dropped working with a backdrop at all. The remainder of the session focused on the light patterns on skin, surrounded by an inky black space, belying the fact that the room around us was relatively small, and definitely cluttered.
Digital original
The end of the session saw both Miranda and Monique working with the stairway; at the end of the living room there is an open cut-through to the stair way, with a distinctive triangular shape formed as a result. Since first seeing it, I have planned to make a digital piece to fit the shape, but for this session, we actually took the existing images off the wall, and worked with the slant of the cut-through. The resulting images were very striking, with the light falling onto the wall, and then the model, and then the wall below her .A very dynamic image that wouldn't have had the same feel without the triangular form of the stairs.

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