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Every image starts out with an idea, that is refined and adjusted until the finished work. Here, the creative process is described and illustrated using process shots from the preparation stage of "The Message".

Starting point: Candlelight is intriguing and warm and timeless. How can I recreate a sense of another place and time, that you want to enter? A space someone has just left. Why were they there? What were they doing? What creates that sense of presence? Personal things. Writing is very personal. A handwritten message with a quill pen - studying, serious. My 1691 book of sermons will work as the source. Copy a passage into the journal with a flourishing script. What else? Their belongings. Set up the shot and review in daylight for composition. Not the right feel! I want a curtain to divide the space and create a sense of looking into the other person’s world while they stepped away. Another shot. Review. Tweak. Repeat several times. Light the candle. Move everything around to catch the light best. Add another candle to lighten up the dark space on the right. Another shot. Review. Tweak. Repeat eighteen more times. A little post processing and crop to balance the composition. Wider is more inviting than narrower aspect ratio. Done.
The Message