I had this idea in my sketchbook for years and tried on several occasions to produce the image but had never been satisfied with the tree. I was out one day a couple of years ago doing some mountain bike stock shots when I happened across this particular tree silhouetted against a dusk sky which I have cycled past hundreds of times, it looked perfect. Half dozen quick shots on my Canon 5D, then I was on my way. The picture sat around in my projects folder for ages until I came across it while looking for something else. At that time I was doing some huge moon stock pictures with a long lens and some converters, and the penny dropped. A search through the “moon” folder to find a suitable one and then an hour or so's jiggery pokery in photoshop and I had the combination I was after.
The Father Christmas on the sleigh element is very very old, it is on a large piece of litho film, from my early SFX days in the late 80s and early 90s, when I did a lot of line separations on litho. I think it must have been a toy photographed on a light box but I'm not sure. A re-photograph to digital and a bit of cleaning up and it fitted perfectly, and voilà, Happy Christmas!
Patrick Eden has been a full time photographer since 1985. Sailing features largely in his portfolio due to his location in Cowes on the Isle of Wight, his birthplace. Patrick has also worked in India, the Caribbean and the US shooting a wide variety of assignments from editorial, sport and travel to advertising and aerial. A long term documentary project It's Black and White was exhibited this year, and a limited edition book with the same title is available directly from Patrick.
See more work by Patrick Eden