The concept behind this shoot was to trial another shoot combining portrait images with flowers as an underlying meaning and connotation to the children’s personality. However, this time I used flowering shrubs and plants in the garden back at home (also saving on the cost of buying expensive flowers!). I researched the plants and their meaning and found the following:
- Mexican Orange Blossom – Purity, Eternal love, Marriage
- Forget-Me-Not – Faithful love, Undying hope, Memories, True love, Do not forget
- Daisy – Innocence, Loyal love, Purity, Gentleness, Romance, Cheerfulness
- Bluebell – Humility, Everlasting love
Also, for this shoot I asked the parents of the children to bring the cream, fur hooded jacket as this jacket with it’s neutral colouring had worked well in Shoot 3. Basing this shoot using this simple colour palette of cream and neutral tones of beige and grey brings a sense of calm and serenity to these images and thus should hopefully emphasise the overall look of a dreamy, ethereal and atmospheric look that I want for these double exposures.
Frames selected and printed
- Frame 6:
- ✘ The flowers are obscuring most of the facial features, especially the eyes.
- ✔Nice natural pose the scattering of the Forget-Me-Not flowers makes the image look very delicate
- Printed slightly too blue and dark.
- Frame 10:
- ✘ Not a natural expression
- ✔ Forget-me-not flowers are again scattered evenly over the image. The exquisite blue flowers look delicate and match the ‘remember me forever’ theme to this print
- Printed slightly too blue
Outcome: a much improved shoot of using the flowers as an overlay on the portrait. Dark areas within the portrait work well in double exposures; simple ‘texture’ backgrounds are easier to view as many different textures make the overall image look too chaotic and messy and this makes it harder to view the image. In the next shoot I need to work on getting the poses right as some of the frames the girl looks uncomfortable and contrived. Looking away from the camera works better that the subject looking directly at the camera as for viewer when the subject is looking directly at you, face on, it can create a feeling of tension and discomfort – it can be a very strong and confronting pose which I don’t think is suitable pose for a child portrait. I’m loving the flower background as an underlying meaning to these portraits. I still need to watch the camera’s exposure settings as some of the frames are overexposed – need to be careful I getting the correct light meter readings.
© Hayley Salmon