What Shadow Looks Like

February 22, 2013

I’m Marla
Sprinkled throughout this journey are the little joys, moments of inspiration, and snippets of life that add color to our human experience. Join me as we embrace the beauty of imperfect perfection, the magic of a beautiful moment, and the endless possibilities of creativity.

Last year I completed a 52 week photo project where I created a set of images fitting within a theme and met some really awesome people along the way.  The saddest part about ending our project was the idea of not connecting with these amazing women week after week. So we decided to keep it going into a new project this year called “What _______ Looks Like.” In this project we post once per month and adhere to broad-based themes. Through this project, I plan to shoot things differently than I normally would, and also potentially edit them differently too.  This is my wild card.

For February, the theme is shadow. Working on images this month caused me to realize that I often shoot to avoid any kind of harsh shadowing. They are interesting, but anything more than a soft shadow to create shape definition is generally undesirable in my portrait work. I wish I had had more opportunities to explore this quite a bit further, because the more I think about it, the more I wish I had practiced and taken advantage of the days where we were blessed with any kind of strong light.

I am excited to see what the rest of my group has come up with. Two women in particular are phenomenal with using strong shadows to their advantage and I’m very looking forward to their posts too. But to start it off will be Ms. Christina Benge from Indiana. You can find her post on shadows here.

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  1. Those are great Marla. First image is so strong and I love how you captured her in small pocket of light. Love tree branches and last one id one of my favorites.

  2. I love how you “see” shadows and I love your processing. 🙂

  3. Carrie says:

    Love the patterns of shadow in your images! This theme really made me realize how much I avoid shadows,I hope to work on this more.

  4. pamela joye says:

    well, as i went in a completely different direction with this, you’ve made me realize that there is a whole other side of this i didn’t even consider. and i admire that you intentionally worked with tricky elements yet pulled it off with grace.

  5. Christina Benge says:

    Ohhh You found some awesome shadows!!! Love every one of them!!

  6. tina hunter says:

    these are great. i love the little pockets of light you’ve found and how you’ve used them.

  7. Toni Burks says:

    These are great, Marla. The last 2 are my favorites, where the shadows are forming patterns on her face. Especially like the mood in the second to last!

  8. Marsette says:

    Wonderful shadow images, Marla! I especially love the last two! Love her expression in the last one!

  9. Athena says:

    oh Marla, these are so fluid and emotional. I love that second image somehow- really magical. Your post work is delicious, like eye candy.

  10. Staci says:

    Oh love them. Especially one and 2. One because its just such an everyday memory that is forever caught beautifully and 2 because of the amazing amount of shadows within the pic.

  11. Karen Porter says:

    I adore how we see two perspectives of the same scene in the first two images. And that last image grabs me – the strong light in her hair but soft shadow of her face. And her look. 🙂 Beautiful!

  12. Emily says:

    Love the shadows and focus of the last photo. And the expression!

  13. I love when everyday moments are captured beautifully, and you did just that with your first 2 images. The light and composition are simply divine!

  14. Heather Robinson says:

    Oh how I have missed seeing your images Marla. You have this gift of being able to take photos with such understated elegance. And of course you have remained true in these images as well. I love that first image. There is much beauty in the softness of the shadow. And that last image is my favorite. The dappled light combined with the grain and that expression just make it so mesmerizing.

  15. Love your shadows! I agree completely with avoiding shadows completely, so this was a fun month! I love your daughter’s expression in the last image.

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