Image of the Week #5: Vanessa Day

…she carried her emotions close to herself but for that fleeting moment her face betrayed her.

— Vanessa Day
 Vanessa Day - KodakBW400CN+

Vanessa Day – KodakBW400CN+

What’s the story behind this beautiful portrait?

I had been invited to photograph the home birth for a family I had photographed many times before including engagement, wedding, maternity, and firstborn portraits. I had been called in the middle of the night and labor had progressed somewhat slower than expected once I arrived so I left for a few hours to visit a friend and refresh myself.

I contacted them around noon that next day and they said I should probably head back, and halfway there (10 minutes away) they called again to say he had already arrived! My disappointment didn’t last long as I discovered that it is actually those sacred hours immediately following a newborns arrival that hold the most important memories.

Their elder son had been staying with his grandmother and so I remained with the family until he could arrive and officially meet his new baby brother. It was shortly after their meeting that grandma also came in for first introductions. It was incredible how quickly this moving moment came and went. This grandmother did not fawn over her new grandson as some grandmothers might, she carried her emotions close to herself but for that fleeting moment her face betrayed her.

What are your thoughts and feelings on it?

It was a gift to me to be able to capture it. I do not consider myself to have “earned” this portrait but rather that I was simply given the window and I was blessed to have seen it with a camera in my hands.

What gear did you use and how did you process the image?

I used a Canon 5D Mk II with the 50mm 1.2L lens. I had originally processed the image with Lightroom and a black and white conversion but more recently processed it using the VSCO pack 05, Kodak BW400CN + preset as a base. I also removed some background clutter in Photoshop.

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