On shooting Natalia: There’s No Place Like Home

It feels like I’ve been waiting forever to share this image. This is probably the one I’m most excited about because I’ve dreamed of it for ages. It’s one of the ideas I have in my book that I kept putting off, I’m not sure why. I never got less excited about the idea, I was dying to create it, but I guess it never felt like the right time. Until I had Natalia for an entire day and I just had to do it.
The inspiration for this image came from a bunch of different places – obviously, the main one is The Wizard of Oz (one of my favorite childhood movies). But then there’s also the song Home by Breaking Benjamin.
Here’s a brilliant mashup of the two:

But I wanted it to be a different take on the original idea. I wanted to give it a darker twist. This is what I was thinking:


I didn’t stick to everything I had written down. As I started editing, I realized that the green/yellow tones worked better. I considered making Natalia put on a wig so that it would be easier for me to turn it to red, but then I decided that I didn’t want it to be exactly like the movie and just have it be loosely inspired by it.

There's No Place Like Home
There’s No Place Like Home

I was also too stubborn to use a stock image of a tornado. I have absolutely nothing against using stock images, I would use them from time to time, but I decided I can just draw one! It wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be, but it was SO much fun. You can see how I did it here:

p.s. keep watching till the end to see a short behind the scenesย video!

Shooting this was funny because I didn’t have enough bricks, so when we got to the location, I spray painted the ones I did have and kept moving them around to make it look like an actual yellow brick road. And bricks are HEAVY. It seriously felt like exercise! Oh, and when we got there we realized that the spray paint didn’t have that spray nozzle thingy (I have no idea what they’re called), so we were almost not going to do it but then I remembered I had perfume in my car so I ended up removing the perfume’s nozzle and using it, but ofc it was the wrong size and I ended up with spray paint all over my hands. Which, by the way, is nearly impossible to get off. It took a couple of days, and a lot of scrubbing, for me to be able to get it off. But it was soooo worth it!

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2014-2017 Events The Making Of Thoughts

4 Comments Leave a comment

  1. It is superb, Amani! Glorious image! Well Done Amani! Your works never disappoint me. ๐Ÿ™‚ On the contrary, ever more I love your work. In my opinion, you did very well not to use a stock image of a tornado. Probably would not be so spectacular! The tornado you did is awesome. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Congratulations! XO

    Liked by 1 person

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