The Strange Tales of a Sleepwalker by Johanne Brunet

The Strange Tales of a Sleepwalker by 

Life can be a real puzzle at times, and trying to dream our way through it may not always lead to happy results. Living on the edge is bound to speed things up, but it could also be suicidal. Perhaps we should listen to the voice of reason when it urges us to take action, maybe with a few calculated risks?

This is a project for my photography club, under the theme
At night, from dream to reality.

It is not a composite, but one single shot.

To begin with, I had checked the place out a few times to see if there were a lot of people there at night, at this time of year. The place was empty, each time I checked. However, when we got there on shooting night, there was a couple spending some romantic time, watching the river and the city lights. Drat!!!

I took a deep breath, walked over to them, and explained the situation. The lady smiled and asked me jokingly whether I wanted two more models in my shot, to which I replied that they were welcome to stay if they accepted to change into a white shift! They left laughing…

With the camera on a tripod, I made a single shot with a long exposure. A hand held flash was fired manually in various angles to freeze each scene and an assistant held a black hood in front of the lens during every change. We also had to watch for the ceiling light in the kiosk where we were shooting, which lit up for a minute every once in a while (some device to attract bugs, I believe…)

It was a cold and damp night, at 11°C. My assistant, “hired” at the last minute, had no school on the following day and was impatient to get on with some other plans he had for the rest of the evening, so we did only three shots. I was satisfied with the effect of the last one, although I think that the composition could have been improved upon a bit.

Focal length 18mm, ISO-100
Aperture f/22, shutter 30 sec.

Nikon D60, AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f3.5-5.6G VR

Shot in manual mode, each “scene” lit with a burst of my SB-600 set at ½ power. Too windy for an umbrella.

Model: Clara-Eve Martel
Assistant: Phillip Milburn (my son)
Location: Parc de la promenade, Candiac (Quebec, Canada). Montreal lights in the distance.

Freelance photographer specializing in pet photography as well as maternity and newborn portraiture.

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  • oddoutlet
    oddoutletover 4 years ago

    wow well it turned out pretty well! That’s cool how you did it all in one shoot without using photo editing or anything!

  • Thank you so much for your kind comment and for the fave! The only editing was some basic post-processing: converting to black and white, curves and levels adjustments, adding a bit of film grain and some dodging and burning.

    – Johanne Brunet

  • Ursula Rodgers
    Ursula Rodgersover 4 years ago

    Clever and effective work Jo! I admire you getting out there and doing this too :)

  • Sorry for the late reply, Ursula, I saw your message only now. Thank you for your kind words. It was really fun to do, but I wish that my son had shown more patience and let me try at least another time for a better composition… Oh well…

    – Johanne Brunet

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