Helen by Rtesian ()
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Destiny had arranged its pieces. Menelaus saw an opportunity to gain a Trojan ally against his Athenian rivals. Helen saw a chance to escape a husband selected by lottery. Paris saw the face that would launch a thousand ships. None saw the looming savagery and slaughter. All remained deaf to the cackles and laughter of the Fates.
Production Notes: Last week I gently chided using DOF to blur background imagery. This image made me seriously consider using it. Despite a landscape orientation, the foreground characters consume nearly all the available viewing area. Since this is what DOF does best, I thought, what's the point of spending a lot of time and effort on a background no one will see? Since I've never employed the technique, I researched the why's and wherefore's and uncovered a little-advertised aspect that I confirmed. With one character loaded, and for unrelated reasons, I ran a few test renders that took about 20 minutes each. When I added DOF, a Level 1 test render needed just over an hour. So, I can either lose time by making a richer image with a proper background or lose it on the render. I'll add one last thing. If my gaze ever falls on something and the surrounding background becomes blurry and indistinct, I'll put an optometrist on speed dial. :-)