On my last day on the field in Northern Kenya, I returned to the village that adopted me two years ago. I brought a bull camel, bags of rice, and assorted goods, and we had a fantastic feast. While the camel was cooking, the elders gathered around me and, with a lot of hand gestures, they re-told the story of my adoption into the village, and my subsequent accident in Italy, then about my recovery and my return to the village. Then they all picked up their sticks and, holding them vertically in front of themselves began to chant prayers and blessings. It was other-worldly, deeply moving, and a little hard to process. And it went on for quite some time. It was, I think, a defining experience in my life, something like a right of passage for a man from a culture which has so few of them. The portraits above are of some of the men from that circle, taken that morning. These are portraits I will cherish for the rest of my life.
These were processed with my B+W Green Filter Warm Duo, available in my LR4 Develop Presets package. I offered this for sale a few months ago for $10 and you can still get the complete set of 36 of my own daily-use presets, along with the PDF guide, here for the same price. But if you want to try one out, here’s a free download of the B+W Green Filter Warm Duo preset I used on these portraits. Presets are no substitue for learning your craft, but they’re an excellent starting point, and if you dig around under the hood of the presets you get from others, you can learn a lot. Hope this one helps in some way. Let me know what you think.