Leafing through some of Pip’s backlog of random images, this one kind of popped out at me. Mike Berceanu is a commercial artist operating in Sydney, Australia. But no matter how skilled a technician one is, there is always an artistic impulse to be satisfied; this is one of Berceanu’s.
Although the photographer gives an excellent account of his technical methods in producing this image, he does not make any mention of his psychological motivations. All he says is, “In working up an image, [the] first thing I always do is to sketch the idea, in part to crystallise my thoughts but also to create a usable layout.” But what were those thoughts and what is so compelling about a little girl in peril? Like for many artists before, she may be an autobiographical representation of the most vulnerable aspects of the man himself. The ironic part is that Grey Nurse Sharks were used for the composition but they have never been known to attack humans.
Berceanu is quite generous in sharing the technical details of constructing the piece. I suspect the reason some artists are less forthcoming about their “secrets” is the fear that someone may copy them. But the fact is that, whatever expertise one may have, the final result is still a matter of a lot of hard work and why would anyone willing to follow through be discouraged?