Background Story

Finding Inspiration

As Caitlin was getting ready to leave, I noticed a long-sleeve shirt she had buried in her bag. The plaid button down red shirt with her jean shorts gave me an idea. I wanted to see how the red plaid, button-down shirt would look again a blue, clouded sky. She changed and we began our second shoot. We shot a few images, but something was still missing. Just then my buddy Jerry, a homeless guy who lives by the beach, rode up on his red bike. Jerry has watched several of my shoots before and asked if he could watch this one. I smiled and said; “Perfect! Leave your bike right there and come down with me.” The red bike was the element we needed to create the look.

Putting the Look Together

Jerry was excited to help and more excited his bike was going to be in my shot. I changed my f/stop from f/2.8 to f/10 to ensured Caitlin and the bike were both in focus. We experimented with different poses to balance the frame and get the perfect mix of blue sky, blue shorts and red shirt, red bike.


Create a photo with foreground and background elements that balance the frame. To ensure the background element is in focus, experiment with different f/stops ranging between f/8 and f/22. Reference “When to Use Your Cameras Auto Modeif you are unsure of your settings.