Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Creating a still life

Balancing Act

I've talked now and then about generating ideas and how I get inspired. In January 2020, together with artist Helen Eaton, I created a group called Inspiration Collaboration. In a nutshell, we provide inspiration images at the first of every month and anyone interested creates any form of art using those images as their inspiration. 

This month, Helen's image was Basket of Peaches. I knew right away that I wanted to create a still life using peaches. I had two challenges...first, to wait for peaches to come into season here in Nova Scotia...and second, to think of a creative way to display my peaches. I decided that trying to stack my peaches was a good place to contrast to Helen's peaches which were spilling from a basket. 

One thing I learned: I need a lot more practice in still life photography. Aside from lighting, my biggest challenge is placing the items. How many peaches should be in the bowl? How many should be on the table? What kind of background should I use? How much (if anything) should be reflected on the table? Where should the light come from? Yikes!

Here are some of the things I tried:

As you can see, many of the images are too dark. I purchased some studio lighting earlier this year, and I have yet to learn the trick of using them. Either my images are too flat, or too dark. I want them to look natural. Maybe my trick will be to go back to using only natural

I did manage to balance five peaches (one is unseen in the sugar bowl), but I didn't like that image as well as my final selection. I want to post it here....all peaches balanced for a few seconds before falling on the table and floor.

I have been eating bruised peaches since I completed my photo shoot!


  1. I have never quite had the nerve to set up a still life setting, light it, photograph it, and hope to have anything other than banal. Somehow in my mind, a found setting in whatever natural light is happening at the time is not the same as a still life. You've got my mind going on the interaction between a sugar bowl and peaches, and I flashed on a Bewitched episode that talked about peaches. "Don't shave the fuzz off your peaches, let xxxx do it." I can't remember the name of the firm they were advertising.

  2. I love seeing this! It validates what I do when I set up a still life. Take a photo... move something... take another photo... move something... take another... change a background... photo... move the light source... photo... and on and on... until I have 30 photos that my husband says, "... all look the same..."


It's great to hear from you! I appreciate your comments.