Forces’ Sweetheart

This is a work in progress and I’ve been playing with backgrounds. Please give me some feedback on the merits (or otherwise) of the 2 versions.The skin will be tidied up before I finish – also the shadows on the sandbags need attention, so it’s really a question of which version to pursue. The images will enlarge on click.


After adjustment…this is the final version…


4 thoughts on “Forces’ Sweetheart

  1. You know my preference on this pair, I think the one with the stars and stripe is more “open” and the one with the sandbags slightly “closed” even claustrophobic. The girl pops out of the flag background but sinks into the sandbags. These are very subtle effects that most viewers would not be conscious of but they could have a subconscious influence on the initial impact and feel of the image. Each taken on its own works well but against each other the stars version is, for me, stronger.

    Conversely you could consider the sandbags to be a less distracting background than the stars allowing the viewer to concentrate more on the face. Personally, as long as the stars background is well controlled (which it is) and not allowed to get brighter than the face (which it isn’t) then the context provided by it strengthens the message and gives an underlying sense of pride.
    Having said all that it comes down to a judge looking at it for a couple of seconds and pressing the, hopefully, five button. Which button they hit will depend on their own experiences, prejudices, likes and dislikes, preferences and technical bent. Give it your best shot, either could do well (but I still prefer the stars 😉


  2. Hi Chris,

    I agree with everything Mike says! The only rider that I might add is that I think the ‘stripe’ on the flag could become a little distracting. It doesn’t jump out on the initial viewing but after I’d been looking at the image longer I became more aware of it and then couldn’t ‘lose’ it. I don’t know how you would want to get round this as it is part of the ‘stars and stripes’. Having said all this I still prefer the image with the flag.

    ps why are other comments on these images on a different ‘page’?

  3. Thanks. I’ll play around a bit more with the stars and stripes. I can eliminate the white stripe altogether, though then it’s a starry background rather than an American background. I’ll give it some though!
    PS I don’t know why Jeff’s reply didn’t get attached to the right page and I can’t find it in Admin to move it at the moment!

  4. I think something somewhere between the two flag backgrounds is required.
    The flag adds a certain feeling/emotion to the image, but 1st edit was too strong and the 2nd edit is not obvious enough.
    I’m not sure about the hat touching the frame edge, perhaps a tiny bit more space above and a slither of a crop off the left to lose the little black triangle under the collar.
    …..but all that said, I really like the image and expression. Could be a winner !

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