Storybook Interpretation

Photography is all about interpretation to fit the mood of the story you wish to portray.  It starts when we pick up a particular camera and lens and continues when the picture has been developed and displayed, but never ends.  Since I have had a few questions about how I prepare my pictures I thought I’d take a few moments and tell you some more about the process I used to create this picture.


The picture below was taken while I was at the recent Hanover Reenactment.  The story first starts before I left the house.  It was cloudy and threatening rain so I decided that I would take my Pentax K-5 camera with the 18 – 135mm lens.  This wasn’t the lens I had planned on using but this camera and lens combination was the best I had for light rain since they are weather resistant.  Yes, it did rain lightly and I did get the camera slightly wet so I had picked the best combination.

While we were sitting and waiting for the reenactment to start, in between occasional sprinkles, I noticed two young ladies dressed in period dresses walking behind us.  I turned around and quickly got one picture when no one was between us, but I couldn’t avoid also getting the couple sitting under the trees in the picture.  It wasn’t the picture I wanted, but it was all I could get.


When I got around to working on the picture my first step was using Lightroom 5 to process the raw files to get the above image.  I then cropped the picture to eliminate the sitting couple.  I also de-saturated the image some to get the following picture.


At this point I played with various effects, including converting it to a monochrome, but finally decided upon the following approach for this story.  I used Color Efex Pro 2 to further de-saturate the image, add a tint and a vignette, etc. to make it look like an older faded picture as shown below and at the top.


It’s probably not fair to do this to two such lovely young ladies, but hopefully, since they had dressed in period costumes, they won’t mind too much.

I still have more pictures that I took that day and I’ll probably be developing them in various styles throughout the coming year.  That is one of my favorite things about photography … taking my pictures in raw format and then being able to develop them over and over in different styles.  Lightroom is a non-destructive process.  When using it you don’t actually change the original picture and can always go back and do it differently at any time.