Looking for pre-wedding photography ideas? How would it be like imagining rediscovering your lost childhood photographs in which your stranger-then wife was present right next to you back then? It was a rather vivid, euphoric and eureka-like moment when I had the idea of putting together some pictures depicting my wife and I at a particular moment back when we were little.
I set about searching for old photographs of us and matched them according to the year they were taken. For instance, pictures taken during 1986 would see me, a 5 year-old boy being right in the frame; where I don’t belong, right next to my wife, a 2 year-old girl. It was either a case of photoshopping myself into her photographs or her, into mine.
The challenges of this attempt were many. I had to find the right expressions and body language so I could blend them effortlessly and believably into the scene. The condition and age of the photographs that have been kept for so long caused a great variety of discolouration. This plus the different lighting conditions under which the photographs were taken cause a wide range of colour cast and temperature difference.
Hence, when merging the photographs, I had to be careful to desaturate and perform some colour balance on either one of our pictures to maintain consistency. Sometimes, it worked brilliantly while other times, it looked just too fake. Shadow fall was one of the biggest headache in mimicking. Nevertheless, I thought this never-been-done before concept as an accompaniment to our very own DIY pre-wedding photography would be something extraordinary, if not, “eerie” representation of our historical relationship sealed in time.
I scanned all the pictures on a flat-bed scanner, and up-sampled the images by gradually and methodically increasing the pixel count. I ended up with really large resolution images of an otherwise low-res straight-out-of-the-scanner reproduction of the physical photographs. They could easily go up to a 16″ x 20″ print.
Logically, I did not photograph any of these pictures. It just goes to show how important children photographs are in documenting and reliving one’s fleeting little moments. In this digital age, I’m certain most parents will end up having a large pool of stock images of their children. They will never know when their children will end up using them creatively like in this case.
In contrast, I had actually very little material to work with. Of course, the more pictures, the better, as I had a wider range of scenes and possibilities to work on. Nevertheless, it has been a terrific and enjoyable experience putting together these little mementos with a tinge of humour in what have been one of the most interesting series on lost childhood photographs.
I am indeed glad at the injection of this uniqueness in my wedding.