Let me tell you something… in confidence

Confidence…
I am looking at a blank page with the word “Confidence” written in capital letters in a corner. And nothing comes to mind.

That was me a few days ago starting to think about this week’s picture: “confidence”.
Creativity”  seemed easier to me and with the rules I set myself for this project (more on that later in another blog post), I had difficulties to find a proper idea.
Looking at the whole list, I know that I will get this blank feeling again in the next weeks.

So, I looked at myself, at my past, my feelings and the first idea arrived.

Confidence as in self-confidence

Confidence
[kon-fi-duh ns]
Belief in oneself and one’s powers or abilities; self-confidence; self-reliance; assurance

Self-confidence has always been something I struggled with.

Strangely enough, I don’t mind speaking in front of an audience (whatever the size, and I spoke in front of hundreds of people). Whether it is to speak about my work during a conference or as an actor during a play, when I am on stage, in the spotlight, I am not really me. I play another version of myself: a character who looks like me and has my knowledge but he is full of confidence because he does not want to disappoint his work or his fellow actors.
In those cases, I know what to do or what to say (and I feel like a fish in water improvising on stage) and confidence is my friend.

Experience tells you what to do; confidence allows you to do it.Click To Tweet

It’s more in my daily life, when I am myself, that I lack this “safety blanket” and I don’t feel confident enough to share my thoughts and feeling. That’s when I freeze and shut down.

So, the first picture that I had in mind was to have a stormtrooper about to speak in front of a large audience, frozen with fear and looking for some self-confidence.

And for this one, I tried different things. I started with an overhead view of the stormtrooper facing the crowd, but I thought the story could not be understood easily.

Confidence 1.0
Confidence 1.0

So, I lowered the point of view of my camera and had the stormtrooper face me with the big crowd in the background. I find this second one much better.

Confidence 1.1
Confidence 1.1

But confidence has several meanings.
After this first idea, I was confident enough with this word. So I decided to also explore another meaning of the word.

Confidence is also a secret

Confidence
[kon-fi-duh ns]
a secret that is confided or imparted trustfully

As I told you, I have trouble sharing my feelings with others.
But sometimes, you need a lot of self-confidence, to really tell people what you think, either openly or in confidence. And that is the subject of my second picture: a stormtrooper confiding his own feelings to a friend.

Confidence 2.0
Confidence 2.0
The most beautiful thing you can wear is confidence.Click To Tweet

The more I think about this 52-word challenge, the more interesting I find it.
It will be a way for me to reflect upon myself.

Maybe with this project, I’ve found a way to express myself to the world, in confidence.

Julien / Ballou34

Aeronautics engineer by day, toy photographer by night.
Exploring the world with his plastic figures.

Beginning(s)

To tell you the truth, it was difficult to write this blog post.
It was a struggle for me to select a word for the 12th month of the year.

Should it be 'conclusion', 'ending', 'finality'? Click To Tweet

I like order and for me, every story has a beginning, a middle/development and an ending.
I don’t like endings. It means that everything stops afterwards and I hate that.
When I read a book that I enjoy, I always take a break before reading the last chapter. I don’t like endings.
So, the more I was writing this blog post, the more depressing it was getting.

Then, it hit me during New Year’s Eve.
The end of the year is not about ending things. It’s about new beginning(s). Continue reading “Beginning(s)”

Aeronautics engineer by day, toy photographer by night.
Exploring the world with his plastic figures.

SiP goes … in 2018

2017 is almost over but here at Stuck In Plastic, we are already planning 2018.

I hope you all enjoyed our reports about our last toy safari in Scotland (the review, the #1Toy2Share activity or Chris Rose experience) and maybe you were even able to attend our small exhibition during Bricklive Birmingham. We all had a blast there. Since we want to have fun again soon, we’ve already started planning the next one. Continue reading “SiP goes … in 2018”

Aeronautics engineer by day, toy photographer by night.
Exploring the world with his plastic figures.

Revisiting places

Did you know that there is a French island in the Indian Ocean, near Madagascar, called “La Réunion” (meaning, “the gathering” in French)?

This island came out of the ocean with the birth of two volcanoes, including one which is still active today. Continue reading “Revisiting places”

Aeronautics engineer by day, toy photographer by night.
Exploring the world with his plastic figures.

The Martian

If you haven’t guess by now, looking at my social media feed, I love space. Be it the classic spacemen from my childhood or the Star Wars universe, I always dreamt to see our planet from the outside.

I don’t know if there is any link with my work and my passion for aircraft, but space looks interesting to me because there is still so many discoveries and scientific advances to be made in this area, either in technology or in places to visit. The challenge is amazing and I am amazed to see that some private companies, like Space X, are accomplishing what was only the work of nations in the past. I always try to watch every lift off and landing of their launchers. They are able to send a spacecraft beyond our atmosphere and have it land back on a “small” drone barge. What an accomplishment. Continue reading “The Martian”

Aeronautics engineer by day, toy photographer by night.
Exploring the world with his plastic figures.

My own “Escape the slug” picture

I am back from a well deserved vacation far from home and work. And I am happy to see that a new photo contest is in progress with #SiPgoesJedi.

When we received the news that TLG (read, The Lego Group) was sending us three sets numbered 6176782: Escape the Slug, for the challenge, I was excited and sad.

I was excited because it is an exclusive set which was only available in 2016 during the “May the Fourth” event and it depicts one of the most iconic scenes of the original Star Wars movies.

But at the same time, since I am part of the jury, I was sad because I will not be able to win one. But I am happy that three lucky and creative winners will receive this awesome prize. Continue reading “My own “Escape the slug” picture”

Aeronautics engineer by day, toy photographer by night.
Exploring the world with his plastic figures.

Skærbæk Fan Weekend 2017

A couple of weeks ago, after the fantastic LEGO house  Fan Pre-Opening, I left Boris to go to Skærbæk, a town on the western coast of Denmark, for SFW (read Skærbæk Fan Weekend).

But what is Skærbæk Fan Weekend?

If you don’t know what SFW is, here is an extract from their website to help you understand its history.

SFW Logo - (c) Skaerbaek Fan Weekend
SFW Logo – (c) Skærbæk Fan Weekend

In 2005 the LEGO® Company started a small get together with some AFOLs.
That event was called the LEGO Fan Weekend.
Through the years it developed and growed to a fantastic event. Somehow the LEGO Company decided ten years later not to continue the LEGO Fan Weekend. Seriously bad news for the fans and so three AFOLs decided to take over the organisation:
in 2015 the Skærbæk Fan Weekend was born!
Fans from all over the world are coming together in Skærbæk and share their passion for the brick. No hand-luggage bag is too small that even the AFOLs from oversea are bringing some of their brilliant creations to Denmark.
But not only AFOLs are joining us, through the weekend the event is open for public visitors.

Skærbæk Fan Weekend this year

This edition of SFW was the biggest ever in terms of participants and MOCs (My Own Creations – meaning original creations made out of LEGO by fans). We were more than 740 participants coming from 31 countries (including Australia, Brazil, the US, Japan, Hong-Kong, Italy, Spain, Germany, France ;-),…).

A gathering of people from all around the globe
A gathering of people from all around the globe

Continue reading “Skærbæk Fan Weekend 2017”

Aeronautics engineer by day, toy photographer by night.
Exploring the world with his plastic figures.

One Toy To Share In Scotland

After my trip to San Francisco and seeing people using the toys of others to take pictures, I came out with a small activity (challenge, exercice, game,… – call it what you want) and a hashtag for our safari in Scotland. One Toy To Share In Scotland (read #1Toy2Share_Scotland)

One Toy To Share (#1Toy2Share)

The principle is simple.
Someone brings one toy that everyone has to photograph at least once during the weekend. One toy to share (with everyone). Read #1Toy2Share
Simple, right?

This exercise will show how people are using their creativity while using the same model.

#1Toy2Share_Scotland

For Scotland, I was the one who brought that toy. Since most of us are using LEGO minifigures in our pictures, I thought it would be interesting to use something a bit different for once. Something a bit bigger.
So, I went with a bird  (the Osprey) from the toy company Four Horsemen Studios and some accessories. Once again, it was a line of toys that I discovered in San Francisco and that I loved immediately. They are very well made and full of details and colors.

Accessories
The accessories that came with the bird. Look at those amazing wings…  – Photo credit: Julien

So, let’s see what we came up with during our days.

Continue reading “One Toy To Share In Scotland”

Aeronautics engineer by day, toy photographer by night.
Exploring the world with his plastic figures.

Story book (a summer project) – Status report

Summer holidays.

What a great moment of the year. I really hope you are enjoying yours.

Like every year, the summer season is one of the busiest time of the year at work, for me. This June/July did not fail to be so.

And since I don’t have any child, I tend to take my summer holidays in June or September. What a delight to be on vacation when everyone is back at the office. :-)

This time, in September, there is the Edinburgh toy safari planned followed by a trip to Denmark (but more on that later on the blog).

Don’t get me wrong, I will have a short break this August during which I will drive to the South of France, to visit my parents.  Continue reading “Story book (a summer project) – Status report”

Aeronautics engineer by day, toy photographer by night.
Exploring the world with his plastic figures.

I believe I can fly…

Last month was the Paris Air Show.
You may have read my article on the subject. It was a great experience. I had so much fun taking pictures with LEGO minifigures in the middle of airplanes.

And because last month’s word was craftsmanship, I thought it would be a good idea to take one of those picture and describe the crafts I used to achieve the initial vision. Let me drive fly you through the whole process Continue reading “I believe I can fly…”

Aeronautics engineer by day, toy photographer by night.
Exploring the world with his plastic figures.