From idea to print in 5 silly steps

Gosia on the beach

Hubris

  • excessive pride or self-confidence.
  • (In Greek tragedy) excessive pride towards the gods, leading to nemesis.

Assignment

Every portrait starts with an assignment. This time I assigned myself to make a portrait of Gosia. I love doing both her and photography, so I wanted to combine the two and create something memorable.

1. The Idea

Gosia’s birthday is the 7th of August (I tend to forget, she loves to remind me). A couple of years ago, I bought the dress you see on the photo for her birthday. Yes, I’m the kind of guy that buys dresses for his girlfriend (feel free to contact me by the way)…

2. The shoot

The weather in Holland is shit (I’ve tried to be whimsical about it, but brutal honesty in this case works best), so after a couple of weeks we decided to settle for a summer day that wasn’t too drowsy. Which meant we traded warm sand between our toes for moist sand between our toes, red silted skin for bleak skin, and the only thing we were truly honed for was irritation.

I don’t smoke.
Where the sun never sets.
I believe I can fly
Is this going to take much longer…

3. Editing

No not that type of editing but rather curating, selecting, throwing out the bad and keeping the acceptable. My workflow is easily characterized as serendipitous, so I usually have to wade through hundreds of images to find a couple of hidden misty gems; but not this time! Due to my familiarity with the subject and my impeccable preparation, I only had 83 images to go through. Lucky!

I picked this image as my final.

4. To Photoshop or not to Photoshop

Are we still talking about this? Of course, to Photoshop! Don’t believe any of my photographs, up is down and down is up! Black is white and white is black! It’s all a great lie.

Gosia beach final image edited and approved.

5. Print and presentation

After the final edit many years past, leaves turned yellow then red fell off the trees and withered. Putin lost a bit more hair, Trump turned even more orange and Kim Yung Un worked on his third chin and a launched a couple of missiles. Business as usual, nothing to see here, please move along…

It’s all in the presentation.

Gosia wishes to remain anonymous.

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Theodoor Thomas

Theodoor Thomas

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I bend the truth like a lens bends light, a visual narrative of strangers but exclusively about myself.