Little Devil – A ManyManyMoments MostlyReal Portrait

Note:  This entry was actually published on October 17th, 2009.  I’m backfilling the blog with work that I had never gotten around to adding to the blog.  I dated this June 15th simply because we had taken some time off in June and most of july due to the birth of our baby Marco

Two hours of photography, countless hours of Photoshop… and Little Devil is here.


Like Little Angel before it, Little Devil is a ManyManyMoments Signature product for childen’s photography.  While we’re happy to make creative portraits of your little ones in the great outdoors, or in your home or any other special place, MostlyReal Portraits do hold a special place in our heart as they allow us to blend together the delicious gorgeousness of your little one with the fantastic world of imaginaton.

Unlike Little Angel, which did not have specific preproduction photography, but rather was based on a “found image” (shot by us of course), Little Devil was the first MostlyReal portrait that were conceived from the very beginning in most of it’s final detail and that therefore had specifically planned preproduction photography.  Of course children being the unpredictable beings that they are means both that the end result is not going to be exactly as planned, and also that it’s going to be better.

For instance in the case of Little Devil, the little Devil holding his own tail was NOT planned ahead of time, but rather the result of our fabulous model putting his left hand in that position when we simply asked him to hold up his right (for the planned flame).

Here are some shots from pre-production:

I don’t want to sit.. I want to crawl!  I love to crawl!!!


 Yet more proof that when we let the model be himself the result is much better.  Here he was essentially copying the pose I was suggesting to him.  Mouth expression and all.


But notice… seconds later… on his own… hand as I suggested, other hand ready to grab the virtual tail (all on his own)… and an expression to die for, which made the Little Devil the adorable image it is.  And yes this is the image that would eventually become Little Devil.  Shot in natural light, many thanks to the cloud cover for the fantastic shadowless wrap-around light.


Here is the image, shortly into post-production… cut away from the background, tail, wings, wing structure in place, beggining to work on the clouds behind his back but in front of his wings.


Finally some detail shots to show you just how detailed a MostlyReal portrait is (this one was printed as a 20×30 but would look awesome even at twice that size)

Delicious little feet:


Detail of the tail – and yes the texture on the tail was painstakingly copied from the scales on a snake.


The fire: special effect actually shot during post-production (one of those outdoors torches to keep away bugs), most of the smoke was added in post as a series of special effect layers.


Finally the bits I’m most proud of: the horns and the goatee.  In order to make them realistic I spent a good 15 minutes examining my own hair and facial hair.  Eventually I determined that the only way to pull this off in a way that would look totally real even if inspected much more up close than you see here… was to paint by hand every single strand of hair, constantly sampling the color of my model’s real hair.  I believe I managed to accomplish my goal.


One more time the final image:


Little Angel – a ManyManyMoments MostlyReal Portrait

Note: this image was not created on 6/1/2009.  I am slowly backfilling our blog with content that we had on our previous site and didn’t want this to show up as the latest work.  Plus we were off for a perior of time around June 2009 due to the birth of our baby Marco.

Introducing our very first MostlyReal portrait.

You have been able to see it in our galleries for ages, but this is the first time we show what it looked like before post-production and show some of the images along the way to the final Little Angel.

Here is the final image:


 Unlike later MostlyReal portraits, Little Angel did not have  a preproduction photography session purposely scheduled to create it.  The starting image was a “found” image (shot by us of course) taken while she was playing with her grandmother.

Here is a shot immediatelly before the shot we used in the portrait:


And here is the image that was selected, mainly due to her smile and the reltive ease (compared to the previous image anyway) to separate her from the background.


 Here you can see that I’ve separated her from the background and added catchlights in her eyes.  The funky background was just a way to see if the separation had worked.  I think it had 🙂 … for those unfamiliar with masking in photoshop… few things are more daunting than masking thin strands of hair.  Yeah this one took a LONG time.


Later in post-production she already has wings and the beginning of the cloud she’s sitting on.  The sky is very flat, there’s no halo, her face hasn’t been brought-out with Post-processing and the diffused clouds are missing.


Once again, the final image, for those who might enjoy comparing it to the intermediate step above.


If you would like us to create a MostlyReal portrait for a special child in your life, don’t hesitate to contact us with your vision and we’ll discuss what would need to happen to make your vision a reality.