Cloud Collecting

This morning I looked out the window and thought, wow, pretty sky! Someone is missing out on beautiful portraits!

Yes, I really do think like that. I say the same thing when I see a beautiful sunset too, if I don’t happen to be shooting that evening. My wife thinks I’m a twit, but that’s how I think. Wow, nice sunset, now put some people in front of it!

So I ran outside with my camera, as I sometimes do, and ‘collect clouds’.

Why? Because sometimes the weather doesn’t cooperate on a client’s portrait shoot. So it’s always nice to have some pretty skies on file, that can be blended in if necessary. I put them in what I like to call my ‘cloud bank’. It’s a subtle art, and it’s easy to overdo it and make it look fake. The key is to have lots of types of sky available, at different times of day, different angles to the sun, and different weather conditions. That way it’s easier to find something that resembles what you’re replacing. Just…well, nicer. Basically I blend in the new sky with the existing one, to give it more texture. Without just slapping on a new one, which usually looks fake and awful.

If you look through my portraits on my website, most of the skies are real. But there are a couple that have had help. And it isn’t the ones you think!

My two year old came out this morning to help, in his pajamas. Since the sun had just risen, and the light was nice, I snapped this picture. Just a snapshot, but it’s cute. And he’s bringing in the newspaper for mommy.

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