Amateur Photography - Get ready for some arts & crafts

Taking a photo isn’t actually that hard - you press the button… that’s really it, easy! To make it more special you got to make your hands dirty and by that I meant specific kind of “studio” (Read: My small London room I am renting) rather than street/candid photos. You can get stunning street shot that no one else ever will being in right place and time, you can get even better sport shoot if you have good enough kit and experience - I am not discussing value of those photos just stating a fact that each require different kind of kit, experience and/or preparation. If you an amateur photographer with alcohol problem (Read: photography inspired by %) and have a goal of making something special, specifically face breaking through the puzzle pieces which is actually the end goal you might think : 

Steop1) I’ll take a portrait photo of a pretty friend.

Step 2) Take a photo of Puzzles

Step 3) Learn the shit out of photoshop, put it together and boom! You are done, never mind famous..

Well, my experience is a lot different from the above, a lot of super glue, little bit of crying mix with few vodka red bulls and four to five hours spent feeling like a child doing arts and crafts again at school… hours I know I am never getting back.

All the photos showing rock braking through the glass, letters falling of the pages, fruits cut in half, sandwich where you can see every ingredient separately above the other? It’s Photoshop work, just not the Photoshop I'd expect. You’ll realize said letters are black spray painted letter macaroni, broken down sandwich is hung on the strings to look like parts are flying and mention rock is also on the string. Yes, there are composites what are quite fucking arty and make me jealous when I look at some but came to realize that those clear cool photos aren’t actually composites and with some examples from photographers they seemed to involve a lot more DIY than actual photoshop.

I didn't learn that from watching websites or photos online. I've learned that when thinking on reaching a goal of a said portrait of a woman's face braking out of puzzle pieces. Hence, started of building blank puzzle sculpture of sort that would get me a little closer to that goal. Obviously after hours of doing that realized the whole thing might as well go to the bin and would need to start all over again. Blank puzzle shits I bought had a glassy layer which bounce any kind of light (flash or natural) which to some degree learned to correct in post but if I want it done well... well, need to start all over again.

Through all the little trials and fails over the months you'll see me documenting trying to take stunning portrait of a woman breaking though sheet of puzzles. Why months? I have a full time job, pet to take care of and enough of shit going around that rarely have a will to will never mind pursuing my passion photography project, also because the deeper I am going the whole thing it becomes blatantly clear to me that the amount of skills that I need to learn is ridiculous! Seriously, the more little test I do and research, the more variables and questions I come back with? From set up I need to take the photo, through post processing as my Photoshop game seems as bad as my people skills. But probably most annoying is to try work out those little odd questions that are somewhat never had to think about before as never actually planned of doing photo shot:

What face would be best?

What face other than mine I can actually get?

Should she/he/me put a make up on before the shot?

How long the whole shot will take? Will I need snacks?

And most importantly how many drinks do we have before the shoot to make the whole thing a little less awkward?

What was your most time-consuming DIY you've done to create something special? How long did it take you?

PS: To document better the whole thing a touch better in process of creating "Appendices" with links to different websites, YouTube videos that I am watching to get the skill I need to move on with the project. But also all stuff I found useful in the past. Will be divided between:

Photoshop - most useful videos that are helping me to work with the project

Composition - staff that helped me to take more or less decent photos in general

Kit - how to use it rather than where to buy it

Other - Best drink to get you through a very boring yet informative photography videos on YouTube