Sunday, April 27, 2014

New Project Underway

One of my best friends told me the other day that her sons are both getting married within the next year and a half. Because both of the boys are very special to me, I offered to create special photographs for the young couples as a part of their wedding gifts. But where to start? This prompted thoughts about wedding photographs I've seen on various social media sites. Since my preference is not portraiture, I have decided to "focus" on close-up photography. This weekend I jumped in and began practicing while looking for inspiration.

image of engagement and wedding rings resting on a dried maple leaf
I Do in Autumn Colors
copyright 2014, Stephanie Maatta Smith

image of wedding and engagement rings with white flowers
I Do in White
copyright 2014, Stephanie Maatta Smith
My own engagement and wedding ring provided the first and most obvious starting point. Funny the objects and props found laying around the house. There was a lovely, dried maple leaf on the bookcase just waiting to be put to good use. A fresh cut bouquet of spring flowers with several delicate white blooms sat on the table. And, a large piece of glass from a picture frame was freshly cleaned. The light coming through the living room window was soft and diffused, putting a sparkle on the rings. I used a 36mm macro extension tube with a 200mm telephoto lens to pick out detail, and realized how badly my rings need to be cleaned.

image of shoes
Dancing Slippers
copyright 2014, Stephanie Maatta Smith

Among other things I have a wide array of shoes, including the ones I wore for my own wedding. With a little improvising, I set up my champagne-colored slippers to appear as if they are on a wooden floor. The wood floor is actually a little table I've had for years. This time I used a 50mm prime lens, which made me work a little harder for composition and focus. Composing with my feet as it were.

image of a pair of shoes with jeweled brooches on wooden stairs
Sit Father, I Can't Dance No More
copyright 2014, Stephanie Maatta Smith
Finally I grabbed a pair of bejeweled party shoes and headed over to the local historical village. There's a lovely gazebo in the center of the village perfect for weddings and small dances. Fortuitously there was a small white chair sitting in the gazebo, probably left over from Easter activities. I posed the shoes in a variety of spots and positions, ending up with them slightly tossed on the stairs of the gazebo. It was the golden hour when I was photographing outside, the sun starting its descent and cool and lovely glow to the sky.

Yes, definitely close-up photography for the "boys" and their fiancees.

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