I didn't quite make my goal of b/w, but sometimes you have to listen to what a picture is telling you, so I added a very slight warm hue to it. To me, the picture called for it. Those branches are ones that I had seen several times, so I decided to gather them up and create a shell around her as she held that surprisingly painful pose. I think I said to her several times while shooting "Pretend like this is your last breath", and every time I snapped the camera I pretended it was mine as well.
Those clouds that I added felt like smoke to me, or exhalation, but I had to tone them down to let the sticks and skin show through: a cage trapping mortal flesh. Another thing that I set out to do was to create a rather "photographic" image, since b/w always yells photograph! to me...but I also wanted it to look painterly in the texturing. My brain works in juxtapositions: for every element in a photo, there is usually an opposing detail.