Growing Pain NOT ! by billyboy

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Shot on Fuji Reala 100 ISO print film on Canon EOS-100 with EF-100mm macro lens. A4 print scanned to digital with Epson V-500 flatbed scanner.

Daughter Melanie, taken during the same shoot as this…

My original description of this portrait was all about the scanner.
But today I had the pleasure of seeing it nominated for the SoJie17 portrait exhibition so figured it needed some editing… cause it’s really all about her.

When I think back on bringing her up during those early teen years, I’ve got to admit it’s hard not to remember the worst of the raging hormones… the defiance of parental authority, the costly phone abuse (it actually requested psychological compensation!), the temper tantrums, the iron shaped burn marks (notice plural) on our bedroom carpet… I know most of you have been there and hopefully back without lasting damage.

But every time I see this picture it all melts away. Cause there were moments like this one more often than my memory alone will allow. The fading scars from when she cuddled a stray cat she found in the back yard before she knew better… the crazy hairdo that hinted to her sense of style that so loved my camera over the years… those amazing deep blue eyes she inherited from her mom… and that infinitely complex expression that couldn’t decide whether to love me back or smack my face. It all makes me realize that it’s all about dynamic. It’s the thrilling highs and the desperate lows that generate the love. Like it or not.

She’s now happily married to an amazing guy. She embraces family values with all her heart… and she works as a top skin beauty analyst with Chanel in Montreal. So something beautiful must have been brewing even during the worst of times.
Thank God I had a camera :-)

…and now… I got a PRIZE…

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billyboy, teenager, daughter


  • etta
    ettaalmost 7 years ago

    Awww…she is so pretty Bill! I’ll have to do some checking out of that scanner.

    Awww…she’s got your eyes, I think. Maybe.

  • On Mel’s behalf Etta, thanks for the compliment!
    If you click on the large view you can see just how awesome that scanner nails the detail.
    And yeah, could be right about the eyes… we’re just glad she doesn’t have my nose!

    – billyboy

  • OK Etta, I did some scans. First is from a BW negative:

    Second is from a color negative:

    and the third is from a color slide:

    All were done at 4800 dpi (although it goes up to 6400 optical, I don’t think the higher rez would improve anything) compared to the 2700 dpi rez of my negative scanner. The scans took about a minute. I have to say I think my negative scanner does a better job as they are sharper even though the resolution is lower. Having said that, considering it’s a flatbed scanner, I was pretty blown away to get this kind of result. This scanner is way versatile. On some scans I needed to adjust colors and sharpen, but I did the adjustments in Photoshop and no adjustments were made to the scanning program.

    If you want, I’ll send you the full rez versions by email so you can see what they look like at true 100% zoom after I resized at 3840 × 2560 × 300 ppi. Send me a BM if you’re interested or if you want any more info!

    – billyboy

  • melynda blosser
    melynda blosseralmost 7 years ago

    beautifully captured

  • Dave Moilanen
    Dave Moilanenalmost 7 years ago

    Wonderful BB!

  • Barbara Sparhawk
    Barbara Sparhawkalmost 7 years ago

    It’s a wonderful photograph, BB, for it’s timing. She is so perfectly on the cusp between child and woman. The curls are girly, the overalls are rebelion, the expression is entirely know it all. And yes as you’ve said, you must have had a roller coaster ride with this beautiful child. Congrats on the birthing, the raising, the reveling in a job well done.
    And I don’t know a thing about the photo equipment you detailed, but it was interesting, and the quality here is really excellent. Great shot, pop.

  • Barbara, that’s so cool you picked up on the timing thing. Her sweet entry into teenagerdom gave us no warning as to just how wild the ride was gonna be. Should have read the manual first, though I don’t know if it would have done much good. I think now it’s time I wrote my own manual… on survival!

    – billyboy

  • dominiquelandau
    dominiquelandaualmost 7 years ago

    Wonderful girl,BB…:)

  • Naylor
    Nayloralmost 7 years ago

    She is very wise beyond her years ….. so beautiful !!!!!
    Great shot…. ((((((((HUG))))))) its hard to think how fast the time really does goes by ……… Your a great Dad :)

  • Celena, time goes by like a speeding freight train with no brakes… hugs to you!

    – billyboy

  • TeriLee
    TeriLeealmost 7 years ago

    awe…congrats on the new scanner….I have a 13 year old daughter…she is already talking about going to college over seas…….I try to be supportive…but….those tears in your eyes…I know I will feel that someday…this is such a sweet shot of a beautiful girl :)

  • Teri, being supportive is one of the hardest things to do. In their minds they know everything… but we have the gift of hindsight as we’ve been there, done that, read the book, seen the film… But support is essential. Just take one day at a time and do everything you can to lead her to figuring life out for herself. It’s the only way she’ll believe you.

    – billyboy

  • Alan Rodmell
    Alan Rodmellalmost 7 years ago

    Beautiful shot.

  • Sharon A. Henson
    Sharon A. Hensonalmost 7 years ago

    Lovely shot…..I have four daughters… my advice to you…enjoy !!!!!!

  • You got FOUR? And you’re alive to tell the tale?? Sharon, you are truly blessed!

    – billyboy

  • Traceyisanozzy
    Traceyisanozzyalmost 7 years ago

    She’s kinda got that ‘Are we done here?’ look about her in this gorgeous portrait taken in her teen years BB. Interesting about the equipment too. Does a fine job!
    Beautiful portrait of your ‘baby’ girl, and no doubt there will be more ‘wee tears’ soon, as little Melanie’s begin to arrive! :)

  • Thanks Tracey for the kind words. Little Melanie’s? I hope she has 5 kids and I hope they’re all daughters… I’ll have so much fun passing on my wisdom!

    – billyboy

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