Lars V. Andersen

Behind The Image – Dark Sun, Dark Minds

This is my first “Behind The Image” story – I asked my followers on Instagram to choose between two images and it was actually a draw, so I flipped a coin to pick one:)

Title: Dark Sun, Dark Minds (made in 2017).

Read below the image.

1. Theme:

Anxiety. The feeling of no matter what you do, the dark monster of anxiety is always lurking to take control and make you powerless. It will try to convince your mind, that it´s stronger than you and you have to obey, if you want to survive. It may not make sence if you have not had anxiety in your life, but I hope that the image speaks to most people in some way.

2. Setting/location:

I wanted the scene simplistic, so I removed all furniture but the sofa chair. I used a room in my old house. That house was more than twice as big as the one I have now – and the only thing I miss (a little) is a room just for shooting pictures.

3. Wardrobe:

I was wearing one of my shirts. I kept it simple as I normally do.

4. Color:

I usually go for the low saturated look. It´s kind of my thing.

5. Props:

I usually use at least one prop when I shot (a flower, a mask etc). Here I used my single sofa chair (belonged to my grandmother back in the day). To make the “shadow man” I used a white fabric (see the pictures below).

6. Framing:

I like the centered framing, the symmetric look is something I really love and often use.

7. Light (flash/natural light):

I used a single flash in a 60*60 cm softbox, placed on the floor at front of the camera, pointing towards my back head. The light from the flash is the only light in the scene.

8: Post-processing:

The photo was edited in Lightroom and Photoshop Elements (PSE). I started in Lightroom with basic editing on the main frame (the picture of me in the sofa chair (exposure, contrast etc. and then did a composite of the main frame image with some pictures of me behind a white fabric (see the un-edited raw pictures below) – I always try my way when editing, I am no expert AT ALL, so I just played with the blendmodes in PSE and used the Clone Stamp Tool and other tools, so the shadows ended up looking like they did. The final color correction was made by presets I have made in the programme Exposure X.

9: Gear:

I shot this with my Nikon d800 and 35mm Sigma Art prime lens. Settings were f/8, ISO 200, shutterspeed 1/200. I try to have as low an aperture as possible when shooting an image like this (= f/8 rather than f/4 etc.).

That´s it! Let me know if you got questions! Or if you need more information. And make sure to follow me on Facebook and Instagram if you want to see more like this.

Here are some un-edited frames used for making the image (as you see it´s not fancy!).