UK based photographer David Saunders has reached 100 photographs in a Lego Star Wars project. David shoots Lego, dinosaurs, action figures, and other awesome toys. If you ever have a moment take a look at his social media. The images will amaze you.
To stay on top of our game, photographers should undertake personal projects. If you need inspiration, you’ve certainly found it here!
David tells DIYP that he still enjoys ‘regular’ photography. In fact, he said, “A beautiful landscape or the smile on a child’s face is priceless but with toys the possibilities are endless. You can literally build and shape the world around you (and at the same time get hold of your favorite childhood toys!)”
David said, “I’ve always loved Lego mini-figures and Dinosaurs are obviously awesome, so my interest in photographing them was a natural process.”
There are hundreds of very talented toy photographers out there and taking a picture of a Dinosaur, action figure, Lego or whatever else flicks your switch is relatively simple but making it stand out from the crowd is difficult. This is probably the most important side of photography; stand out from the crowd, be unique.
David’s images seem to combine visual effects in-camera and post-production. David tells me he likes to keep everything simple in terms of lighting and equipment. He tends to only use the light around him. Natural light and interesting backdrops are his friends! He tends to favor getting everything to bang on in the shot, so there’s minimal work to do in Adobe Photoshop. David shoots in jpeg and is confident all will be well. That’s not to say he doesn’t sometimes use Photoshop heavily though. Without such software, we’d all be lost!
A lot of toy photography utilizes mobile phones. You’ll see examples of this online everywhere. Modern smartphones allow us to capture pretty impressive images but all the dual/triple camera setups, artificial blur and software tweaks can’t replicate real glass. Their depth of field is great, not to mention their overall image quality and dynamic range capabilities.
A full-frame and 100mm prime keeps everything looking natural and offers less distortion. This is especially important as I do a lot of image stacking. Image stacking allows me to shoot at f/2.8. I get everything in focus and keep the background looking beautiful. It can pose problems. Have a play with image stacking and you’ll see what I mean.
The images throughout this article were all taken in our garden or on the kitchen worktop. The sun or ceiling lights provided the light and Photoshop added some extra punch to finish things off!