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Teenage Runaway - A Parents Nightmare Photo Contest Finalist
Teenage Runaway - A Parents Nightmare
Teenage Runaway - A Parents Nightmare
A recent story of a teenage runaway touched me deeply. It would be a nightmare for me not to know where my son was staying or sleeping, or if he was safe, fed and warm. Many teens think they are running to a better place and a better life with no rules, yet end up living in fear and squalor unable to get back home. I asked my son to model for me in an old abandoned cabin to create an image that shows how many runaway teens end up living. I hope that someone thinking of running sees this image and decides to stay home with their families who love them. I have mixed emotions seeing my son in this image. I feel extremely lucky that he is a happy, healthy teenager and thank God, that he is safe and warm here with us. On the other hand, my heart breaks for all those parents who do not know where their child is tonight.
© Heather K. McFarland
Nikon D1X Digital ...
Andy Robinson

member since: 7/14/2003
    Great image! Love the tones, emotion and mood!

10/28/2007 9:08:26 PM

Cindy Bendush
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member since: 1/16/2007

Good for you for portraying something few want to see in order to call attention to this teen plight Heather. And, kudos to your son for such a job well done modeling - great expression!

10/28/2007 10:41:52 PM

Jennifer L. Alder
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 1/11/2007

I AGREE! Very touching image, Heather!
The comp and treatment here are fantastic
Very well done

10/29/2007 2:35:59 AM

Megan p
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member since: 6/27/2005

This is excellent!! I am not there yet with teenagers, but gosh this hits home! well done!

10/29/2007 6:07:09 AM

Linda D. Lester
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member since: 3/13/2004

Excellent shot....It is so sad to think they want to run away! Also there are always two sides to every story! Which is sad too. Great job!

11/4/2007 5:21:24 AM

Murry Grigsby
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 8/12/2002

Great idea, setup and image Heather! Your son's pose is very well done also. I hope your photo and hard work will keep at least one child home with family but better yet a whole bunch?

11/14/2007 5:17:11 PM

"emmanuel ""nolax""" N. Montemar
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member since: 8/6/2007

wow! the treatment is superb! may I know the filter you used on this one, Heather? thanks.

11/16/2007 7:34:01 AM

"emmanuel ""nolax""" N. Montemar
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member since: 8/6/2007

wow! the treatment is superb! may I know the filter you used on this one, Heather? thanks.

11/16/2007 7:34:05 AM

Heather K. McFarland
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member since: 12/28/2001

No filter was used at all Nolax. It is an HDR image. Meaning I took 3 different exposures on a tripod ( EV's -2, 0, +2), only one with my son in it. Then combined the 3 exposures with Photomatix and other work in PS.

11/16/2007 1:44:31 PM

Heather K. McFarland
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member since: 12/28/2001

Oh and I forgot. I did use the Dragan action on the image also.

11/16/2007 1:45:00 PM

Margot Petrowski
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member since: 8/14/2004

Congrats....wonderful and thought-provoking!!!

11/26/2007 3:43:58 PM

Melissa Olsen
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member since: 11/6/2006

Congrats Heather, I love this image!!

11/26/2007 3:58:09 PM

Kay E. Mahoney
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member since: 4/23/2003

Congratulations on your finalist, Heather.

11/26/2007 4:11:16 PM

BetterPhoto Member

member since: 10/17/2005

Congratulations Heather on your finalist! B-

11/26/2007 4:19:34 PM

Cynthia L. Deters
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member since: 7/18/2007

Great story. Wonderful idea. Congrats on the finalist!

11/26/2007 5:35:01 PM

Wende Trew
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member since: 8/31/2005

This is soooo AWESOME and very moving image to me! Congrats on a well deserved finalist!!!

11/26/2007 5:57:15 PM


BetterPhoto Member

Very poignant image Heather. It's beautifully done. Congrats on this well deserved finalist.

11/26/2007 6:06:10 PM

Cary Rogers
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member since: 8/30/2006

Congratulation on this Finalist, Heather! Great lighting, textures, composition, and earthy colors!

11/26/2007 6:13:56 PM

Megan p
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member since: 6/27/2005

Congratulations Heather!!!

11/26/2007 6:37:38 PM

Terry L. Ellis
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member since: 8/20/2004

A compelling finalist, Heather! Huge congratulations!

11/26/2007 7:14:12 PM

Lindley Johnson
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member since: 8/18/2004

Excellent image, Heather, with an important message. Nicely conceived and executed. Your son did a great job, too. Congratulations on your finalist.

11/26/2007 7:15:35 PM

Kathy L. Clark
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 3/29/2007

Heather this is such a wonderful image. Very well deserving as a finalist. Congrats my friend.

11/26/2007 7:29:53 PM

Amanda Chapman
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member since: 4/10/2007

P O W E R F U L !!!!!!!!!!!!!

Deserves to be sitting in the finalist seat!
The clarity & definition is perfect!

11/26/2007 7:53:49 PM

Erin Tyler
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/30/2005

Congratulations on your finalist!

11/27/2007 6:17:57 AM

Nadya Johnson
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member since: 11/19/2004

Awesome photo Heather, and the message is compelling! Congratulations on your outstanding finalist!

11/27/2007 9:15:58 AM

Karen Engelbreth
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 4/17/2003

Congratulations Heather!

11/27/2007 10:57:06 AM

Jennifer Rennison

member since: 1/10/2004

Very moving, emotional image, Heather!! Excellent work, congratulations on your finalist!

11/27/2007 1:27:44 PM

Mike Umbreit
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member since: 7/9/2007

Heather - Congratulations on your finalist! - Mike

11/27/2007 3:14:14 PM

Jeff W. Robinson
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member since: 10/17/2002

A powerful image Heather and a very well deserved Finalist! Great Job! Jeff

11/27/2007 3:16:53 PM

Linda Blair
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member since: 8/14/2006

Soooo powerful...a big congrats on this finalist!!!!! ☺

11/28/2007 3:44:03 PM

Luca Diana
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member since: 8/24/2007

Thanks for this wonderful shot, Heather, and the great caption.


12/10/2007 11:17:38 AM

Richard D. Amelio
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member since: 11/9/2003

Very Very creative, another great job

12/11/2007 5:05:16 AM

Lisa J. Boulden
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member since: 12/2/2006

Such a powerful image, Heather!
Creative and so very well-captured!

12/26/2007 9:43:34 AM

Carolyn M. DAlessandro
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member since: 10/10/2005

I totally agree with you Heather,I also have a son whom I feel blessed knowing he is well...but it has become epidemic what is happening with our children. Your image is outstanding, powerful, and well done!!

7/2/2008 6:05:10 AM

Lynn Haack
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 3/10/2007

Just enjoying a stroll through your amazing gallery.....this one really touched my heart. Amazing emotion in this image...your son and you did an excellent job! My son's friend ran away and stayed in an abandoned shack for days. His family was frantic! The story does not turn out well....he went on to commit a robbery (not at all in his nature.) Illegal drugs.....destroys so many lives.

8/24/2008 5:44:26 PM

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