Having had to rescue a drunk who was stumbling about in the middle of the road on Tuesday, I determined that the weekly intercessions slot my church has during its Sunday morning service will be on the subject of Alcoholism in the UK I like to use a striking background image that resonates with the subject and decided to use that as an idea for my weekly fiftytwo self-portrait project (with the caveat that I am not trying to depict what I am really like in this one).
The bottles were awaiting recycling so I pressed them into service as props and set myself up at the end of the dining room table. My camera was set up across the room on a tripod, fitted with my Vivitar 90mm lens and I made use of my wireless remote control (ML-L3) to take a number of shots:
- Exposure: 0.333 sec (1/3)
- Aperture: f/4
- Focal Length: 90 mm
- ISO Speed: 400
I deliberately chose a dark corner, hence the slow shutter speed even with a fairly wide aperture and bumped up ISO. This was to catch a bit of motion blur, emphasising the drunken character of the shot. I also chose to focus more on the hands and bottles than the face to further enhance this feeling.
One thing I had to do was crop the picture to a 4:3 aspect ratio to suit the church projector. I decided that further tweaks were also needed to make the most of the shot (the other two linked above are unedited, for contrast). I played with levels and curves to bump the contrast and also to push the colours in a rather sickly, greenish direction.
As a finishing touch, I overlaid a texture based on a shot I took in Barcelona several years ago (the wall of Casa Mila). The whole effect is quite subtle and, to further tone it down, I applied a partial mask over my face, reducing the effect even more in that area.
I think it captures what I was after; my only concern now is that people who see the shot on Sunday morning might not appreciate that it was posed and leave thinking that one of their leaders is a serious winebibber. Mind you, that’s been said before about others far greater than me….
Want to add something? Please join the conversation about this posting (nb. Yahoo! account required to log into Flickr).