Bonnie and Clyde decided to fly to Italy to rob the local bank. But while they have been digging a tunnel under the bank, they punched a hole in a volcanic plug. So the ruins of Pompeii are hidden in the ashes again.
Bonnie and Clyde celebrating their honeymoon. Some of their colleagues were noticed in museum robbery while others were sought after by the police on a charge of fraud on a massive scale. But this scale doesn’t come within miles of modern Bonnie and Clyde. On this red-letter day they got married, drove to a “Bank” and grabbed some gold. Not too much, just enough for the wedding journey. They’re going to spend their honeymoon on Maldives, that’s for sure. And we did not only witness their departure, but also hooked up with them in one of the airports on our way to Thailand.
Andrew and Anna (Clyde and Bonnie) took this question seriously. They’d been preparing everything for about 2 months. They had made an agreement with “Zhuliany” airport (Kiev, Ukraine), hired an airplane, arranged a car, rent real guns and gold, prepared suitcases, dresses, hats and loads of other stuff. And if you think it wasn’t a hard issue, just take a look on how the dress was picked to not underestimate the efforts. We’d decided on the heroine’s dress style beforehand. Anna (the bride) was sending me shots of dresses which met our criteria. I was choosing among those options to find the one that would better fit the shot composition, color scheme and the overall photo concept. Here are only some photos of the dress options I was choosing from, just enough for you to see the overall picture of what we were doing. Finally, the first option won. You can see it on the final photo.
Choosing a hat was a tough issue as well. )
I even had an alternative — a kerchief with sunglasses ala Jacqueline Kennedy. But during the photoshoot I decided that previously chosen hat would be the best option. Originally this hat was adorned with a carefully picked kerchief, which was tied on top of the hat to add dynamics to the photography. But this element is not visible on the final image. )
I couldn’t find any of the cars, that Andrew (the groom) wanted to bring for this photo. It were old soviet Pobeda’s, expensive BMW’s and many other options I can’t recall now. Finally we’ve decided on Chrysler which is a 1970 year of manufacture. It had been previously used for one of my photoshoots here and here. A very photogenic car that had totally met the requirements of this story.
The suitcase that you can see on the photo was second on the list. The first one didn’t match the style and was rejected.
Renting gold bars turned out to be quite expensive, so I cloned some of them in Photoshop. For that reason I had taken pictures of gold bars in different angles and lighting conditions.
Our photoshoot took place in “Zhuliany” Kiev international airport. We passed metal detector, took a look at the guns running into the x-ray machine instead of typical suitcases and proceeded to the airfield. The hired plane had been already waiting for us. Such a gorgeous bird, you bet. Its cabin accommodates several passengers and is made to give comfort and pleasure. There is no flight deck to hide the pilots like they have in massive Airbuses. But while approaching the takeoff runway I noticed that the plane stands in a wrong position against the sun and out of accordance with the photo idea. It’s no bother. We hopped into the aircraft, started the engines, drove a circle around the airfield and turned the plane through 180 degrees. Then everything was ready and we started to shoot. The whole photoshoot including aircraft movement requests lasted about 3 hours.
Here is the backstage of this photoshoot. This video was shot on a mobile phone long time ago so its quality is not the best. )
After the shooting I spent a lot of time editing the results in Photoshop and working with this material was a pure pleasure.
I didn’t make a video record of what I was doing because I put together a slideshow using all the
intermediate PSD-files that I usually save while working on a photo.
So, here is the slideshow. We open the photo in Photoshop and start to manipulate. I took hands, legs and tails from different shots. In fact I was “constructing” the most preferred version of the photography.
After the all the manipulations and post-editing I came up with this photo. A large scale production.
I love this photo. I’ve put my heart in it. It took a lot of effort and recourses to get it done. However, I’ve been always thinking that I could make something more massive with this photo. I wanted to make the story of the image more complicated and richer.
It took me three years to realize what exactly I wanted to do with it. Now let’s open the photo in a graphics editor and begin to create. Watch the full video to see how it happened.
If you use my website for studying photography and post-editing, you can repeat after the video and learn how to work in Photoshop. I’ll give you a hint: here you can download the raw photo (1540px) for your studying. All the other layers you can get by taking screenshots of my video. Go ahead and create! :)
Post editing and manipulations in Photoshop.
I’m using Apple Cinema Display 23″ monitor. Its resolution is 1920px on the longest side. And this is the monitor I was using to record photo manipulations. Total size of the file including audio track appeared to be 12 Gb. It’s quite a challenge to upload such a massive video when you’re living on a tropical island. That’s why I had to limit the resolution to 1280px (5 Gb) and have been uploading it on YouTube for about 10 hours. :)
Before and after. I have combined the raw photo and the final photo into one image for easier comparison of changes between them.
Bonnie and Clyde in Pompeii.
That’s all for now.
I’ll be glad to answer your questions and receive your comments as usual.
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Sincerely, Eduard Stelmakh.