Monday, November 17, 2008

Tulles of the trade

There are many ways to capture a moment with a little child and make it a brilliant photograph and turn it into a great magazine cover. Babies, after all, to start with, are cute simply by being themselves.

Then there are plenty of talented photographers who know how to bring out the beauty in any subject.

And now you have plenty of tools at your disposal -- from sophisticated photographic equipment to computer programs that seem to do all the work (if you let them).

But what ultimately gives fulfillment is the effort that went into everything leading up to the capturing of images. Of course, it is easy to simply choose the nicest outfit on hand, get a nice place, pick a baby, and have a shutterbug snap away with no thought as to concept. But if this is the way it's done all the time, where is the love in that? It's the amount of love that goes into the work being done which ultimately matters most.

So, what's the inspiration behind the cover of Baby magazine's current issue? This:

I came across this photo at Creature Comforts, a charming art and design website I visit from time to time (it's also on the list of blogs on the sidebar here). "What an amazing cover this would make," I thought, at the same time amused by the thought of hours of attempting to persuade an infant to strike -- and hold -- such a pose.

I showed my colleague Nicole the photo and together we marveled at the many possibilities (though some of them weren't possible at all!) as regards cover concepts. Eventually, the tulle concept stayed; so did that of a tutu-clad baby girl. Lilymoms already had the Ballerina Baby among its collection, but what I wanted for this cover was the skirt alone, not an entire ballerina outfit. But what to wear on top? Will she simply wear a skirt and nothing else? Would a pearl necklace complete the look? What about a headdress? Won't the 11-month old baby look too old for the skirt-only portrait? Will she sit still long enough? What about a top shot? Many concerns cropped up; solutions were arrived at. In the end we decided on a neutral-colored "Drama queen turned dairy queen" tee to complete the ensemble.

Lots of other details were considered, and you've seen the photo that ended up on the cover in a recent post. Here it is again:

Of course, the photo session in itself was another string of challenges. But that's another matter altogether.

I must say, though, that seeing a topic like "Kidnap-proof your kids: Know the latest M.O.s" on the cover -- next to a striking photo of such a charming tutu-garbed baby girl -- felt a bit strange. But then it's one of the more important articles in this issue, what with reports of child abductions in shopping malls (attempted or successful) in the media during the past several months. One of the practical points I remember well from the piece penned by the Phil. Daily Inquirer's Alcuin Papa was this: kids in flashy clothing and jewelry attract criminals, especially if the kids look as if they're not aware of their surroundings and if their parents and other companions have their attention on shopping. So parents and other guardians, take your cue from this!

What else is in this issue? A sampling:

"And the rest is history" (Maximizing bed rest, including insight on what moms may feel)

"Is your pregnancy too sweet?" (On gestational diabetes)

"Getting it down pat" (Early intervention for babies with Down syndrome)

"Chemical war: Is Bisphenol-A really bad?"

"Too hot to handle" (Effects of prolonged heat on male fertility)

"Hubby helpline" (Tips for new dads on easing into their new role)

"Up, up and away!" (Getting ready for air travel with one's toddler)

"Playground play" (Making preschoolers' experiences at the playground more fun)

"Disappointed over your child's report card?" ("Understanding your Child" column)

These are just some of the topics covered in the November issue. The regular columns are: Baby's Doctor by Dr. Lourdes Anne Co, Childbirth 101 by Rome Kanapi, Best Gift for Baby by L.A.T.C.H., I am a Child by Marita Villafuerte-Pierce, Pediatric Dentist by Dr. Fina Gupit-Lopez, Understanding your Child by Tedi Villasor, Family Finance by Antonette Reyes, and Fatherspeak by Manny Escasa.

As Christmas is barely a month away, there's also a nifty Gift Guide to give you practical ideas.

Baby magazine is published by Marathon Publishing Co. and is sold at all SM Department stores (baby section), National Bookstores, Babyland (Robinsons Galleria, Shaw Blvd. near Cherry Foodarama, Shoppesville), Baby & Co. (The Podium and Power Plant Mall), Bufini, Procreation Shangri-la mall, and Big & Small Co. Shangri-la Mall.

1 comment:

petrufied said...

i love your entry title hehe ;)

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