Anatomy of an image: Flower-themed child portrait

© Ceres Diaja Henry

Flowers for Autumn

Photographer: Ceres “Diaja” Henry

Date: May 5, 2018

Location: Studio in Harlem, New York

Subject: Autumn, Diaja’s 7-year-old niece

Photographer’s note: “For some time, I had been promising Autumn I would paint and photograph her. One day she and her mom visited me right after a photo session with a client. I had already broken down my equipment and put everything away. However, with my creative juices still flowing, I decided to fulfill my promise to her. She was quite excited, but I wasn't fully prepared. I didn't have a fresh bouquet of flowers, nor did I have anything for her to wear. Thankfully I found a floral shirt she had left at my house that worked perfectly. I quickly painted her and gave her some flowers from a previous shoot (which were half dead but decent enough to work with), stood her by the window for natural light, then [photographed] her. I was pleased with the results, especially with how well my niece took direction during the shoot and her display of emotions. This image has been the most popular so far out of my entire series.”

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Eric Minton is a writer and editor in Washington, D.C.