Before and After — Zion in the Gap

The Before and After series focuses on the two or three key creative choices, in terms of composition and processing, that go into creating an image.  Specific technical details about the shot have been left out — you won’t hear me talking about tone curve adjustments and whatnot unless it was a key component of the end result.

Zion poses in the gap between some shadows from the late afternoon sun.


  • Shutter:  1/500
  • Aperture:  f/2.8
  • ISO: 200
  • Camera:  Canon EOS 1Ds Mark III
  • Lens:  Canon EF 50mm f/1.2L USM

Composition and Processing

  • I had Zion tilt her head up partly to make it look like she was enjoying the afternoon sun, but also to reduce any shadows on her face and arms.
  • I like using internal elements of an image to frame the subject — sometimes that’s a window frame, or other people — but in this case it was simply the shadows cast on the wall.  As a plus, the diagonal shadow runs in the same direction Zion is facing, tying the two together.



May 07 2012 07:02 pm | Photography

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