Last November, while working on a different project, my friend Paige and I set up a quick little portrait. She had the costume for a video we were doing and we thought it would be cool to use it for a photo as well. It was fun to work with a dark room, candle, and the modeling light from one of my strobes turned down to a glow.
Here is a before/after of the image:
Looking at them side by side now, it seems like the biggest changes were really just the contrast and the color of her skirt. The color was changed to more closely resemble the original painting we were emulating and to provide some color contrast between her and the soft green tones I was going to add to the shadows.
Here is the Georges De La Tour painting, The Penitent Magdalene, that inspired us:
Obviously not an exact duplication due to some color and posing differences, we just wanted to do something that was very similar since we really like the original painting. I think I originally added some red to the shadows of the photo but the greens/yellows end up looking a little dirtier and provide for some more color contrast between the green shadows and the oranges.
I'd love to do some more photos inspired by old paintings. On my list of things to shoot..