How to photograph a wardrobe on the rocks at the beach using miniature models
Sometimes, you get an idea that seems to be impossible (or at least very tricky). After you think about things for a while and figure out the logistics of actually getting a wardrobe onto the beach on top of rocks, the solutions seem to present themselves.
When you realise that this was the idea of Photographer Felix Alejandro Hernández Rodríguez, you know those solutions are going to be interesting. Unlike his previous projects, The Crow & The Dove and Sandtroopers, Felix chose to step outside of the studio for this one.
About this project, Felix writes…
Our dreams act like a blender of ideas, fears and desires with a touch of who we truly are. The music we listen, the images we see, the experiences that leave a mark on us, in our dreams, they all come together to define us.
“The Wardrobe” is one of those images that appear repeatedly in my dreams. Repeatedly enough to call my attention and wanting to took it out and bring it to life.
The amount of planning and preparation that goes into Felix’s shoots before the camera’s even been brought into the equation always astounds me and his model making skills alone are very impressive.
From forming the basic shape out of polystyrene to covering it in cement and adding the small details, nothing skips by Felix’s eye.
For this project I wanted to go as “natural” or “unplug” as possible. Finding new ways to create an image and not depending so much on the post-production.
Don’t get me wrong, I often use post-production softwares like Photoshop to accomplish my goals, but it always be refreshing trying new techniques. Is not just a matter of doing things different, is also a matter of defining your self.
Making the models, however, is only part of the journey. You also have to find the location and prepare your scene.
Drop in a wardrobe, and a few miniature books, and the stage is set. Then, it’s just a case of adding some dry ice to bring in a little atmosphere.
My goal was to achieve all the effects and images for real on camera.
For that if I needed a cloudy background, instead of doing a composite, I went on location. If I needed fog, I used Dry Ice. If I needed a ancient ruin, I builded my self, and so on.
Soon I found my self doing things that I had forgotten or that I would never think I could be able to do, and of course, by doing them, it opened a new door for me…
One new door full of new possibilities for creation.
The Wardrobe keeps in it mysteries for all of you to discover. I have opened the wardrobe doors and discovered mine.
Felix used pretty minimal kit for this shot, using the day light ambient as his only light source.
Felix’s work is as fascinating to watch being created as it is to look at the final images. Every time he puts out a new video it gets me excited to see what he’s come up with this time.
Have you used similar tricks to achieve images that might otherwise have been impossible? Tell us about them and let us know your thoughts in the comments.
John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.