In many ways this image came about was by way of an experiment to see whether I could create a digital image of smoke in Photoshop. I did that in three different ways and all are shown here, although at two are further processed and the drifting smoke hardened up.
This picture combines the images with a young woman’s X-ray; she had Multiple Sclerosis and the beginnings of pneumonia that would subsequently carry her away due to her inability to cough or to breathe properly, and antibiotics were ineffective. MS has to be one of the saddest diseases, it strikes mostly young people. With an unknown cause it is one of the commonest neurological diseases in Australia. Symptoms include physical, mental, and occasionally psychiatric problems. Specific features include blindness in one eye, double vision and many more. Sadly the disease progresses inexorably or intermittently with disappearance of the symptoms between attacks. There is no cure, treatment is to support the person and try to prevent further attacks.
My title springs from Otto Harbach’s sentimental old song for the show Roberta (1933)
Tears I cannot hide
So I smile and say
When a lovely flame dies
Smoke gets in your eyes