Stephanie Sherban » You Can Sleep When You're Dead: Blog by Colleen Miniuk

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Apr 242013

Photograph copyright Stephanie Sherban

I’ve been photographing since 2005 with both digital and analog cameras and have loved every minute of it. I love taking my camera on hiking trips to photograph the great outdoors. I love taking it on vacation to photograph my family and friends. Most of all, I love capturing what other people don’t see, from angles no one expects.

Today I’m going to tell you about one image in particular that I hold dear. This image was an assignment for my photography class at Northern Arizona University and I actually struggled with it much more than I expected. I had some great ideas in my head for how I wanted this image to turn out but couldn’t get exactly what I wanted it to look. The day before this image was due, my fiancé came home with a dozen red roses after seeing me so stressed out and anxious about this particular image, as well as the rest of my school assignments. After looking at the roses for a few minutes and thinking about what an awesome person he is to try cheering me up like that, I found myself playing with the necklace he gave me a few years back (the necklace in the image). I started toying with different compositions in my head and came up with laying the necklace on the roses and getting all the detail of the letters in “I love you”. Here’s where it gets messy. I set up everything on my rickety computer desk in the office and started setting everything up. I accidentally dropped one of my flash triggers and had to bend over to grab it. When I stood up, I bumped the desk and the roses spilled over into my computer tower (which then shut off causing more stress and anxiety over the fact that my computer with Lightroom on it had just been drenched in water and shut off), this sent roses, the necklace and water all over. After pulling my computer tower apart and pointing a fan at the wet insides, I began reassembling the image I had in my head, except this time on the bathroom counter. I decided this would still make a great macro shot and continued with my vision. After about 45-50 shots, I finally got the lighting, focus and depth of field just right so the chain wasn’t blurry and you could read the letters in “I love you”. I wound up using ISO, shutter speed of 2.5 seconds at f/5.6. When it came to post processing, I only boosted the contrast slightly. Though this image was a challenge, I feel it came out exactly how I saw it in my head.

About the Photographer:
My name is Stephanie Sherban. I’ve been a photographer since 2005 when I took my first photography class in high school. I fell in love with the process and art of taking great photos. This passion is one I have shared with my Mom and Aunt. I went on to attend Northern Arizona University to minor in photography while majoring in Psychology. I continue to enjoy photography and enjoy the reactions I get from my photos. I have found that photography opened my eyes to the world around me and has given me a new perspective on my surroundings. Visit my website or contact me at

To read more about the Northern Arizona University “Behind the Image: Guest Blogger” project on our blog, please read the introduction on our April 15 post at