I’ve decided to use our first word of 2018 as a way to reflect on the past year. Specifically, I’ve asked myself what did I create last year? And how did it happen? I’ve found out the answer to creativity is often play.
Browsing through my Lightroom catalog, one character stands out of the others: T-Rap. Half Tyrannosaur, half Velociraptor, it’s a simple mix of two LEGO dinosaurs.
Although I can hardly pretend having invented anything truly original, it’s the only character I use in my photography that is not an “official” character from a LEGO set. So instead of making a new image like Stefan and Julien did, I decided to re-use the very first photo of T-Rap. (Or Frankensteinosaurus as it was first named back then.)
But what made me create this weird looking dinosaur?
The story of T-Rap
Frankensteinosaurus was born in London a bit before our Merry-go-round.
I was at home, packing my toys for a weekend filled with fun, a hard task which usually requires lots of planning. Suddenly, I realized that the LEGO T-Rex and Raptors I own, both use a regular technic pin to connect the head to the body. A few seconds later, a funny dinosaur with a big head and a small body was standing on my desk.
It was settled, both the T-Rex and the Raptor would come with me to London. With no idea of what I would photograph (my goal for the trip was just to have some fun with old and new friends), I spent the first morning photobombing other people’s photos with my new dinosaur instead of focusing on trying to take “serious” pictures.
Spending my time playing with a toy instead of trying to make good photos sparked a boost of creativity in me. It gave me lots of new ideas that were the basis for many of my favorite photos of 2017. And the same happened later when I started to play with Aria and my new Dragon Friends.
Playing is not just about fun. There are many other benefits of playing for children. But playing is as beneficial for adults. Particularly in this digital age. When everyone’s hooked continuously on smartphones and social media, I firmly believe in the importance of physical toys in our daily lives.
I’ve never been into new year resolutions. Although I took some sort of resolutions in 2016 and 2017 because of toy photography, I won’t in 2018. Besides our little projects here at Stuck in Plastic, I have no idea what surprises await us. But I know I want to explore my inner child too, and playing will be at the center of my creative process in 2018.