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Inspirations in Photography on Dartmoor
What are the ingredients that come together to make an image? Just as Paul Simon took influences from South African music to create his seminal album "Graceland" I also like to draw on a wide variety of sources, and many of them not immediately obvious in the final result.
Of course, I take influences from films and my late father (the film producer and director G Ivan Barnett), and the lighting in films such as Ridley Scott's "Blade Runner" has always been massively important for me in how I see an image. It's all about having a vision.
Of course, I don't want to copy - what is the point that? I prefer to acknowledge my influencers and give a nod to their creativity and style, and then make it my own.
For the first image of Olivia taken up on the edge of Dartmoor I could hear music playing in my head, and thought of a powerful queen who had conquered, or was in the process of winning lands. I freely admit that as I was editing these images I was playing the soundtrack of Season 6 of Game of Thrones, so Daenerys Targaryen and her particular vision came to mind!
From there, you can begin to work on and enhance other aspects of light. Yes, of course, there is artificial light in these images. I've brought in a speedlight (actually a big Metz Hammerhead flash) to balance things out, and Rotolights which are lovely and controllable because you can see what you are getting when you use them in continuous mode. The beautifully soft light in the doorway was all I needed to make Olivia's face glow, and a Neo 2 Rotolight provided that subtle touch of an accent light that lifted her from the background and gave her a three-dimensional quality.
Here in the aisle of the church there is nothing except the natural available light. Nothing added - nothing taken away. Sometimes it is all you need - the elements needed for my inspirations are often given to me right in front of me - all I have to do is see them.
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