Pic of the Month: June ’09

Thy Word is Light

Thy Word is Light

In terms of photography, last month was very productive. Though I went on more ventures than usual considering the beauty and variety of subject matter at this time of year, I wasn’t confined to taking pictures outside only. This image was taken in my room late on Thursday night, approximately ten minutes before midnight, to be exact!

The purpose behind setting up and shooting this composition was to use in a new book being published by IBLP. A very similar stock image was going to be used, so I jumped at any chance of replacing it with a picture of my own. The deadline for submitting images for this publication was Friday morning; thus, the reason for staying up so late.

To set up the composition, I chose the biggest Bible I could find and a relatively thick candle with textured wax along the sides. By itself, the candle looked too tall, so I used another book to raise the Bible up. Then I stuck two hair spray bottles under each side of the open Bible to create that curved look of an old, open book. As for lighting, I was in a pickle because I didn’t have a tripod. Therefore I resorted to bouncing an external flash off the wall to the right for my main light and used two lamps on the left to act as fill light. The final exposure was: ISO 200 (to keep the quality high), shutter-speed 1/100 sec (to keep it sharp), and aperture  f/11 (to keep the candle flame from becoming a blob of light). It took about six or seven tries to get it right, but the final result is well worth the effort.

The external flash bouncing off the cealing above didn't quite do the trick.An observers perspective

“How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth! . . . Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.  I have sworn, and I will perform it, that I will keep thy righteous judgments”  (Psalm 119:103-106).


  1. Allen P. June 1, 2009 at 11:26 am #

    Very nice, James. I love the door in the background. The words in the Bible are nice and crisp. too.

  2. Jonathan June 2, 2009 at 7:11 am #

    Wow James, that really looks good. My best part of the picture is the curve of the bible and the texture of the candle. good job!

  3. Daniel June 2, 2009 at 4:36 pm #

    It is hard to believe the difference between the first and second pictures – it really makes you appreciate the qualities of the former. (Such a contrast!) I also like the “observer’s perspective.” 🙂

  4. Robert June 3, 2009 at 7:35 pm #

    Very well done. I like the photo at the end that shows what the setup was like. 🙂 Nice job!

  5. Donald June 4, 2009 at 6:22 pm #

    I know this might be beside the point but I appreciated the concluding verse (as well as it’s format and the correct way of including the reference in parentheses before the period). 🙂

  6. Dad & Mom June 10, 2009 at 5:50 pm #

    We look forward to seeing how this picture is used in print!
    My meditation recently has been on Romans 8.

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