The Age of Wisdom - Portrait of a friend

Neil Ross

Brisbane, Australia

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Wall Art


Artist's Description

The Age of Wisdom – Portrait of a friend
Image captured June 2011 – Brisbane QLD Australia
1228 viewings – 34 favourites – 20 features – 04 Top Ten challenge placements
01 recognition award – 01 pic of the week – 05JUN 2012
Thanks everyone. Shirl will be chuffed! :D

This portrait is of my dear friend and neighbour, Shirley. She’s seen it all, been there and done that, and is blessed with all the experience and wisdom that only life can provide. Very active and agile, she’s doing well for someone who’s 89 years young, and she can even touch her toes. That’s more than I can do.

This photo was taken in Shirley’s music library. She’s a very accomplished woman and music is one of her great loves… along with her love of cats. In fact, the print on the shirt she is wearing says ‘Cats in Art History.’ Need I say more?

Well yes, I do. During the recent Brisbane floods my home was inundated, and Shirley was kind enough to shelter my pets and I. She has shown tremendous compassion and understanding during my time of greatest need. She has done this selflessly and epitomizes humanity at its very best. God bless you always, Shirl. You’re an awesome mate :D

At the time the original photo was taken, my aim was to create a portrait of Shirley in ‘her’ element, the place where she’s happiest (original image shown below). Colour failed to capture the mood I was after but at least the basic elements were there. The first edited version was originally done in B&W but it was lacking somehow, so I added the soft sepia tones. I think it gives the photo much greater warmth, and the crop brings focus back to the subject. I also wanted it to have depth, to have a ‘matured’ quality that speaks to the viewer words of wisdom. I wanted it to look old, to look as if it was taken decades ago rather than days ago. I also love that Shirley’s hand is slightly blurred, animating the image with a hint of movement. To me that speaks of life, and knowing Shirley so well, she speaks with her hands.

Photo taken with Canon IXUS 80 IS and edited with Lightzone. SIMPLICITY is my niche!

Original Image:

Quiet contemplation.

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