Best Photo of 2019?

Every year, towards the end of the year, Flickr creates a group called “Your Best Shot”. This year’s group will be open on Monday.

Every year, it is an occasion for me to reflect on my own photography. Decide what is my favorite and most representative photo of the year. Reflect on a journey and think about how to plan the future. But this year I actually have a hard time choosing a single photo.

For the past four years, choosing my favorite photo has been relatively easy. From the time I had taken and edited each of them, I had that feeling of “it might be the best of this year”. But so far, it didn’t happen in 2019.

Continue reading “Best Photo of 2019?”

The photos no one will ever see

I struggle with social media. I talked about it recently, here and on my own blog.

It’s been over a year now that I’ve had trouble finding the motivation to keep on with the various social media platforms I use(d).

Social Media Tiredness

I’ve been struggling with being active on social media as a viewer.

After a few years, a part of me feels like it’s always the same. I often find myself scrolling through Instagram, simply double tapping a few photos that caught my attention for more than half a second, and then directly jumping to the next one.

There are still many photos that amaze me. At the same time, there are so many photos out there that it’s hard to truly enjoy everything. It takes too much time.

Social media has become to me the fast-food of photography. It has nothing to do with the quality of the photos, but rather the way we consume it. Like fast food, social media is made to be consumed quickly and it doesn’t encourage you to spend enough time to truly enjoy someone else’s photography.

(For enjoying others’ photography, I find meeting with them in the real world, exchanging prints and hanging them at home to be more effective.)

Continue reading “The photos no one will ever see”

Toy Photography, Hype, and Pop Culture Overdose

Does too much hype kills the hype?

Every time a new CMF series is released, my IG feed is flooded with pictures of the new Minifigures. While some people manage to buy them in stores before the official release date, I’m usually in the category of people who have to wait a few weeks to get them. Indeed, Finnish toy stores (and supermarkets) can be slow getting newly released LEGO sets.

I’m rarely in a hurry when it comes to getting something new, so it’s fine with me. But with the CMF, I noticed that by the time I can buy them, I’ve seen so many pictures that I don’t have any inspiration left to take pictures.

Getting from LEGO a couple of CMF to review for the blog has one advantage: I can play with the new minifigs before Instagram is invaded with pictures of them. It’s how I fell in love with Aria. Without the great opportunity to play earlier with her, I would probably have had very little interest in photographing her. She’s still today one of my favorite Minifigures, always accompanying me outside and still going out in front of my camera regularly.

My latest photo of Aria.

Sometimes, I can experience the same feeling of tiredness with “regular” sets. Lately, it was the LEGO Movie 2 Space Squad. It’s undoubtedly an amazing set. As soon as I saw the first official images, I couldn’t wait to buy it. But by the time I got my own copy in late December, I was already fed up with seeing pictures of the pink spaceman everywhere. So I gave up the idea of using the spaceman for any photo.

Pop Culture Overdose

But besides the more occasional hype coming with the release of new toys, I’m experiencing more and more that feeling on a whole new level. I’m getting tired of pop culture.

Continue reading “Toy Photography, Hype, and Pop Culture Overdose”

Looking back in the past

Today I was looking at my pictures from our latest toy safari in Paris wondering: “What can I write on the blog? Do I already have the white page syndrome?!”.

And I came across this picture, taken near the Louvre, on the « Colonnes de Buren », from the famous French artist Daniel Buren. Continue reading “Looking back in the past”

Week 41. Harmony

har·mo·ny

(här′mənē)n.pl.har·mo·nies
1.a. An orderly or pleasing combination of elements in a whole:
color harmony; the order and harmony of the universe.
b. A relationship in which various components exist together 
without destroying one another: 
different kinds of fish living in harmony.
c. A relationship characterized by a lack of conflict or by agreement, 
as of opinion or interest: family harmony.

The Origin

The Origin of Harmony … special thanks to the Google Dictionary
Continue reading “Week 41. Harmony”

Candy Crush

Some of you will remember the early days of Candy Crush on Facebook. Friends poaching for you to help them out to get more lives. Advertisement everywhere. And while my partner in crime can be found quite often playing a game of Candy Crush on her iPad, I never downloaded it or made an attempt to give it a go. Too much sugar for me. 

A game of Candy Crush

By now you will wonder what Candy Crush, one of the most successful freemium online games has to do with toy photography. Clickbait of some sort or a toy photographer went crazy.

The World Greatest Photography Game

For sure not the first, maybe the latter, but hold on, things will clear up pretty soon. I am here to talk about another freemium game that has been on all my social channels over the summer. On Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube I got presented with adds for a new game. A photographic game. A game listening to the name of Guru Shots. The world greatest photography game according to their own website.

Guru Shots, Here I Come.

I could not resist and signed up. 
If you want to sign up right away and don’t want to read the whole post, you can do so through my little referral link by clicking here, and let me know, so I will follow you as well but do read on. This is not some kind of infomercial. 

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Meet Sacha

Back To The Future

If we had a DeLorean parked outside (the one with a Flux Capacitor, of course), we would take you all on a little physical time traveling. Unfortunately, there’s no time machine in our garden, so we can just offer the link to the original series of 2015. The series was called Feature Friday. The main idea was looking at the (toy)photographers behind their lenses. Continue reading “Meet Sacha”

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”

Gathering Assets

In this blog post, I want to continue to talk about the lessons I learned from my summer project. This blog post is also largely inspired by my recent reading of Todd Hido’s  “On Landscapes, Interiors, and the Nude”.

After my summer road trip, I had to take some distance from taking pictures.  Then, for the past four months, I’ve been taking photos at the same spot, with a very limited number of figures.

This is what I call “gathering assets”. (This term is borrowed from a few recent podcasts from Brooks Jensen.)

So what does it mean? Continue reading “Gathering Assets”

How do you choose the toys you photograph?

This past weekend I meet up with some local toy photographers for an afternoon of companionship, conversation and photography. As I was looking around at my friends hard at work, I was struck by the variety of toys they had brought along as subjects. There were dinosaurs, Star Wars action figures, Bratz dolls, LEGO mini figures, custom figures, anime figures, and plenty more I couldn’t identify. Which brings me to my question – how do you choose the toys you photograph?

Continue reading “How do you choose the toys you photograph?”