Backlight and Weeds | The Contact Sheets

It's all good and well to show a final image. Even better if you can see the before and after to get a glimpse into the photographer's thought process while editing. But what if you could see a series of images, the ones that didn't make the cut and the one that did, to get a glimpse of the photographer's shooting process? Welcome to the Contact Sheets, where I'll share a series of images that lead me to the "one", and tell you how I got there.

The Contact Sheet:


I took this series around 4:30 in the afternoon. The light was coming from behind her, and she was totally engrossed in these little flowers. I wanted to capture the sweetness of the moment, as well as that gorgeous light.

My first couple of tries just weren't right. I didn't like her back to me, which is a little rare for me, but I wanted to show her engagement with the flowers. I also had to deal with her PCS, lol, and got a lovely roaring face.

In the second row, I felt like the more detailed shot was taking away from the gorgeous light, and it wasn't letting me see her personality in the moment. The one where she is looking right at the camera was too camera-aware for my preferences, plus it missed the moment of her picking flowers.

The final row of images is where it was starting to come together. I choose the bottom left image as my keeper over the other two. I didn't like how her hand looked in the bottom middle image, and I felt like the bottom right image wasn't as flattering a pose as the keeper was.

This is what I ended up with as my keeper, SOOC:


And then a few minor editing tweaks to bring the final image to life. I adjusted white balance and exposure just a smidgen, and then applied my favorite color preset Matte // Salt. I kept the rest of the edit simple with two graduate filters on either side to add shape to the vignette, and a touch of additional clarity on her hair to help make it pop.

Final Edit: 


Kate DensmoreComment