On Cloud Nine

©Lan Nguyen

“I wanted to make something that could resemble the emotion of love, so I picked the rose,” says Lan Nguyen, of this photo in his whimsical series of silhouettes and clouds. He’d already cut out a silhouetted hand holding a stem. It was just a matter of waiting for the right cloud to come along. “Luckily there are a lot of cloudy sunsets in the Netherlands during autumn, when I made this last year,” he says.

Single clouds can be hard to spot. “Sometimes it takes hours,” he says. This one came along as he read by a window, looking up every 15 minutes to see how the sky had changed. He used a Sony a7 with a 24-70mm f/4 lens to make the photo of the cloud. In Adobe Photoshop he added the silhouette and positioned the rose in the appropriate spot. “With Photoshop I just made the colors pop and made it more vibrant.” 

Amanda Arnold is the associate editor of Professional Photographer.