I began this week fairly determined not to leave the patch project to the last day, but I did not find to much celebration. There was some decoration in the local shopping mall, but it didn’t scream celebration. In Australia having a Christmas in July Dinner has become a popular family event. Whereas in the middle of summer on a hot day sitting down to the traditional Christmas roasts and rich puddings, can be less than fully appreciated but having a second festive feast in Winter is a perfect excuse for more excess. Anyway some of the Christmas decorations can be pulled out to decorate the table, so that sounded close to the theme.
My first thought was to just use the table decorations under some natural light and get a classic bracketed exposure set to create a conventional HDR. I have also added a little tweaking of clarity on the angel's wings and the tinsel with lightroom.
The results says decoration and is pleasing, but its a very calm celebration!
My second idea was to try an available light shot, something a bit moody, a photography of the angel that has become somewhat of a traditional Christmas in July centrepiece for my family, she needs to be in the spot light. I wanted to set this against Christmas tree lights, just outside the depth of field. That was a plan, but as I was testing out the low light conditions I also got me the idea of including a small crystal angel to add some awe and wonder. I experimented with lighting just with a torch and painting the light where I wanted it (back lit and below on the crystal angel, more straight on for the purple angel). My experiments where a bit hit and miss and I could not get the background far enough away to achieve the bokeh effect I want. So armed with several photos that were ok in one or another area I figured it was time to have a lengthy play in Perfect Photo Layers, to merge sections of different photo and Prefect Effects to give me a better bohek on the Christmas lights. I am pleased with the result given it is my first foray into these steps and the limitation of the exposures I started with.