<<< o >>>at the end of the day 35 comments + add yours

Well, this is definitely the final shot from last week's wedding and is actually more to do with the aftermath than the wedding itself. And this shot, believe it or not, nearly ended up in a row (albeit a rather tame one) between me and my wife. I'd been shooting all day, hadn't have anything much to drink, and was worn out; and we'd finally got all the kids to bed when my wife asked me to take a picture of these two as they slept. My camera was in the other room, I'd had enough for one day, and I really didn't want to make the effort. Anyway, I ended up taking the shot, and I guess that I'm glad that I did. It may not be the greatest portrait, or even a particularly good one, but it is quite cute and did provide a fitting photographic end to the day.

So, tomorrow I'll go out and shoot something new. Any suggestions?

capture date
focal length
shutter speed
shooting mode
exposure bias
metering mode
image quality
white balance
11.32pm on 16/10/04
Canon 20D
EF 17-40 f/4L USM
40mm (64mm equiv.)
shutter priority
3x2 + children + photo friday
comment by myla at 08:52 PM (GMT) on 23 October, 2004

Are you kidding? Dave, out of *all* the photos on Chromasia, IMHO -- THIS is your finest work to date. Simply exquisite work.

comment by Jafar Akhbari at 08:53 PM (GMT) on 23 October, 2004

Cute little kids. You've got all the blessings of life.
The boy's mouth has a form that looks like he is snoring :=)

comment by djn1 at 08:58 PM (GMT) on 23 October, 2004

myla: kidding? Me? ;-) Actually, I find it really difficult to judge the quality of the shots I do of our kids because I have far too much emotional involvement/investment in them to be able to judge. Oh, and I was thinking of you when I put this one up; i.e. your request for more portraits - so I'm glad you like it.

Jafar: thanks. Though I probably should have said that this is a shot of our youngest daughters. She does look a bit boyish though, more because she's inherited my hair (or lack of it) than for any other reason. Her older sister, the one on the right, was much the same when she was younger.

comment by Sarah at 09:03 PM (GMT) on 23 October, 2004

Awwww. They're so adorable. Sorry, I have a soft spot for children :) . But the photo is fantastic, everything has soft effect that seems just right.

comment by Jared at 09:54 PM (GMT) on 23 October, 2004

I love the contrast between the headboard and the sheets, even the hair and comforter. The entire feeling of this shot is very comforting.

...of course, that's all aside from the fact that your children are just gorgeous.

comment by mandar at 10:08 PM (GMT) on 23 October, 2004

Hey David, I've been watching your photos for a while now and I've started using the Gaussian blur technique. Why do you feel it adds so much to a photo ? What makes the photo so much more appealing after you've added that glow ? Is it just our perception or is there any visual aspect to it ?

comment by miklos at 10:25 PM (GMT) on 23 October, 2004

I'm not one to go all out and praise your work like you're some sort of modern age Van Gogh, Monet or Michaelangelo, you know that.. I also don't want your head getting any bigger than it already might be with all the praise you already get from people.. But in spite of all of that.. I hope you listen to your wife more often because in my opinion (and agreeing with myla) this really is the best picture on this site, to date.. Damn. Hats off, David.. really..

Anyway, a suggestion for next week (since you ask for suggestions) is family photos maybe. Sort of like jinkyart. It'll be something that your family members could reflect on in the future as well. Reflecting on those shots will have much more meaning to you in the future than looking back at barbed wire maybe or rain drops on a stranger's car.. Not putting down any of those shots by any means, just suggestions.. I don't know.. I'm just saying this because I really enjoy this current photo, and I'm hoping to see more. If I have a weak side, it's people photos. *shrug*

comment by Raminok at 12:16 AM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

The SWEETEST photo of this weblog

comment by Brian Mitchell at 04:00 AM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

Great shot. How do you get that "glow" in photoshop?

comment by picturegrl at 04:41 AM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

Absolutely stunning. The skin tones, the expressions...and those sheets look like clouds. Very very nice. So many photographers can either shoot people or shoot still lifes, but very few do both well. You are a rare breed.

comment by p23e at 04:52 AM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004


comment by Benny at 06:14 AM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

wow, this photo is absolutely beautiful!! so angelic! what an amazing shot...congrats! ps: how did you get that glowing effect?

comment by Daniel Olovsson at 07:01 AM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

Very nice shot but I think it is way to dark compared to all your other shots. A bit brighter and less colors as many of your previus shots would be better, I think. Nice work.

comment by djn1 at 09:54 AM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

Oh, ok, perhaps this one is ok then ;-)

Benny: the glowing effect, as mandar mentioned, is achieved by duplicating the image layer, Gaussian blurring it by around 15px (on the full-res image) and setting the blend mode to overlay (or 'soft light'). If you try this you'll find that it works much better with some images than others, particularly ones that are reasonably flat to start with as it increases both the contrast and saturation.

mandar: I think this technique works because a) it's akin to using a soft-focus lens (or filter) - which we accept as naturally suited for this sort of shot (gentle, soft, ethereal, and so on), and b) it gives the appearance that the subject matter is luminous rather than just illuminated.

miklos: ok, if not today then some time soon I'll do a series of family shots. Thanks for the suggestion.

comment by djn1 at 10:02 AM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

Oh, and in reference to Daniel's comment: does anyone else think this looks too dark? On my setup it looks reasonably natural; i.e. the skin tones and bedding seem ok. The only thing that is a little dark, perhaps, is the head-board, but I shot this by bouncing the flash off the ceiling so it wouldn't have received the same illumination as the rest of the scene.

comment by mario at 11:40 AM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

I don't find it dark at all..it really looks heavenly. I guess we all have a soft spot for soft pics :)

comment by Andy (SensorChip) at 12:59 PM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

Everyone has said it already, but this is truly amazing David. Well done.

And I'd like to second Miklos's comment/suggestion of a set of family shots. Bet they would be really good.

Would you show the original of this, pre PS?

comment by Chris at 01:05 PM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

These are angels. Splendid!

comment by Marina at 01:55 PM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

I don't think that the pic is too dark and the head board is a good contrast to the linen. A really cute shot

comment by PhilB at 02:33 PM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

The lighting looks fine to me! Hope you didn't wake them up with the flash too! Great photo, and a fine series from the wedding. The Bride and Groom will be very pleased!

I'm a Best Man at a wedding on Christmas Eve and you've certainly given me a few ideas of things to shoot.

I'd like to agree with a set of family shots. I'd also be interested to see more night shots, especially with the dark evenings coming up over the winter.

comment by trudie at 02:43 PM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

oh, i love it! beautiful. i don't think this one is too dark at all, i think it's balanced quite nicely, actually. i think the solid headboard is perfect as well, there's no design or carving to distract from the girls, and being able to see the shadow and detail in all that white bedding is just amazing. there's just something about little ones sleeping...

comment by LunaSol at 03:42 PM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

This is so dear.

comment by Jafar Akhbari at 05:44 PM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

Hoops! sorry for the silly mistake. Anyways, this is a awesome portraite.

comment by Weasel at 06:56 PM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

David, you have SO outdone yourself with this one. I love it and think it's perfect "as is". I would buy this print if I knew the kids! ~Weasel~

comment by Seth Thomas Rasmussen at 07:17 PM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

How do you get that light, almost indiscriminate blurring? Like, certain elements at the same depth seem blurred while others do not. If not Photoshop, I don't get it...

comment by djn1 at 11:23 PM (GMT) on 24 October, 2004

Thanks everyone.

Andy: yes, but I've run out of time today. I'll try and put it up some time over the next few days. Remind me if I forget.

Seth: this is a consequence of the technique I explained above.

comment by Bob at 03:51 AM (GMT) on 25 October, 2004

Angelic -- the Chromasia Girls!

Great shot, Dave -- the new 20D is coming along nicely...

comment by jay at 11:50 AM (GMT) on 25 October, 2004

sweet. sleeping on clouds. :)

comment by Karthik Murugesan at 10:55 PM (GMT) on 25 October, 2004


comment by tiffany at 10:56 PM (GMT) on 25 October, 2004

The wife is always correct. :-)

comment by mprints at 11:32 PM (GMT) on 25 October, 2004

DJN - this is such a powerful image, and your post processing really adds a bit of magic. you receive quite a few comments, so I hope that this won't be lost in the chorus. this shot is simply stunning. well done. you have inspired me to take (even) more family pictures.

comment by Michael Czeiszperger at 06:15 PM (GMT) on 19 November, 2004

Thank you very much for sharing the technique you used to get that look. I just tried it on a portrait and really liked the subtle control over satuation-- the look is different from reality in a really pleasing way.

comment by Vahid at 08:31 PM (GMT) on 5 January, 2005

really greaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat!

comment by Christine at 12:34 AM (GMT) on 17 November, 2005

This picture is great.. I love it.

comment by kettlepot at 06:09 PM (GMT) on 8 January, 2010

very soft and dreamy. nice!