Inspiration for the shoot
I was headed to Berlin’s museum island when I spotted a flower bush at Monbijou Park and knew I had to shoot there. Being mid-summer, I knew it would not be long before the flowers withered and I had to act fast. Fernanda, the model, and I had already been in contact. After sending her a picture of the location, we began with planning.
Planning the shoot
Two days later, I returned to the location as the sun was setting. When I first walked by the flowers, it had been midday and I wanted to see the location under the light I planned to shoot in (Golden Hour: the last hour before sunset).
I brought a dress I had thrifted weeks before because I felt the textures of the dress would go well with the texture of the hydrangeas. I had been brainstorming ways to bring out the most in the flowers and decided that working with rich textures would be a good idea.
While the textures worked great, the sun’s position did not. During Golden Hour, the sun would be blocked by a building that was being newly constructed.
So I decided I would have to shoot with an additional light source to solve the issue. And a last addition of texture, I added a crown as a prop.
The shooting process
I worked with Fernanda and Patrycja for this photoshoot. In the past, I have under-estimated the difference that a skilled make-up artist can make. They make all the difference.
We met in time to shoot at Golden Hour. By then, the sun’s rays were only touching some of the flower tops. In the few days since I first saw them, the flowers had already withered a lot. (Lesson: never underestimate how fast flowers disappear in summer). Fortunately, we managed to find a section that was decent and set up the scene. We sought to upset as few flowers as possible (although the bush was already pretty damaged and dying).. There were, of course, a lot of stares.
In my post-processing; I was influenced by the Renaissance paintings I saw on the museum that I had gone to on the day I spotted the flowers. The paintings that I was most drawn to have warm, golden tones and I unwittingly went in that direction.