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”

How I completed my photography project

A year ago, Boris told us about his idea for a project around 52 words. Even though it didn’t take long for me to feel impatient about it, at first I wasn’t excited. I couldn’t have believed that I would be able to complete this project and not miss a single week.

The problem with SiPgoes52

One of the reasons I wasn’t excited is that I’m not a fan of 52 (or 365) projects. Particularly, those where the goal is to take one photo a week or a day.

There are days or weeks where I’m not inspired or motivated enough to take good photos. Also, as an outdoor photographer, the weather is important and not always cooperative. Finally, in late December and early January, I was in Belgium where I would most likely lack time, motivation and inspiration for photography.

This meant I couldn’t start a project with completely new photos, nor have a common theme common across all of the 52 words like Julien did.

What SiPgoes52 was truly about

Picking old photos

I started my project by looking at photos.
Photos I had already posted.
Photos I had already taken but not posted yet.

Instead of taking photos, I was choosing photos. The challenge for me wasn’t about making a photo based on a word. It was about finding the words within existing photos.

I took this photo in December while we were planning SiPgoes52. After taking it, I knew it was a keeper and wanted it to be part of my photo project. So I browsed the list of words to find the one that would be the most appropriate. (It ended up being “sensuality”.)
Continue reading “How I completed my photography project”

Pack your bag(pipes), we’re going to Scotland!

In 3 months, now, all the Stuck In Plastic crew and friends will gather for the next toy safari.

We will spend three days taking pictures of toys and basically having fun.

If you are not familiar with the concept of a toy safari, I invite you to read some posts from past participants who will join us once again for this incredible weekend.

After the previous meet-ups in Stockholm, Hamburg and London, it was decided to go on  the lands of William Wallace . So, this time, the safari will take place in Edinburgh, Scotland on September 15th/16th/17th. Continue reading “Pack your bag(pipes), we’re going to Scotland!”

2,786 m under the sea

When Boris asked us to write, this month, an article about numbers, I was a bit puzzled.

'You don't have to be a mathematician to have a feel for numbers.' - John Forbes Nash Jr.Click To Tweet

There are so many numbers I could talk about, like the 3,098 Lego minifigures that I own (according to Brickset), the four spacemen that I use in my exploration series, the number 42 because of “H2G2” (of course), my #100_Shadows series or even the number 142,857 a number that fascinates me because of its mathematical properties. But none of those numbers are special or personal enough.

So, I decided to tell you a little story about me and my number (2,786).

“Numbers have life: they are not just symbols on paper.” - Shakuntala DeviClick To Tweet

A year ago, I had the opportunity to spend some time at sea on a vessel. Not the small boats that are used for leisure, neither the big cruise ship. It was a work vessel and I was onboard for work. That was a very unique experience that I really enjoyed. Continue reading “2,786 m under the sea”

Marcel, a Parisian in Paris

Marcel is a Parisian.

He is a lover of good food, good wine and good art. He is a connoisseur of some sort. And, being 4 brick tall, he likes to wander around his own city: Paris, the city of lights.

Always carrying a baguette, he walks around with his small dog, a French Bulldog (of course). He wears a marinière (a striped shirt), a beret on his head, and a small red scarf around his neck.

Marcel, a Parisian in Paris

Marcel likes his city. He often starts his day at a café. His favourite one is “Le café des 2 moulins”. That’s where the movie Amélie (or Le Fabuleux destin d’Amélie Poulain, in French) was shot. A charming place. 

‘Can I get a coffee with my croissant?’ / ‘Are you sure you don’t want some grape juice?’

After a coffee and a croissant, he stopped by a “boulangerie” (bakery) to buy a baguette for the day. Leaving Montmartre (that’s where he lives), he passed by the Moulin Rouge and jumped inside a “Metro” (the subway). Continue reading “Marcel, a Parisian in Paris”

A trip to Japan: work travel and toy photography

12 hours…!

I have just spent 12 hours in a metal can to fly across the globe.

It’s Thursday afternoon and I have landed at Paris Charles de Gaulle airport after a long trip back from Kobe, Japan. I was there during 2 days, for work.

My job demands me to travel a lot (in France and internationally). And, at the same time, I like my job and I like to travel, so when I am not at the office, I am happy.

I have been to the US, to several countries in Europe and to more “exotic” places such as Brazil, Australia, Taiwan, Laos, Tanzania, Indonesia, Kazakhstan and now, Japan.

“Of all the books in the world, the best stories are found between the pages of a passport.' - AnonymousClick To Tweet

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On the subject of projects… and pandas

Why do we do projects?
Why do we start photographic projects?
Why do we launch ourselves in the daunting task of taking pictures on a regular basis or with particular constraints?

It’s intimidating, stressful and exhausting.
So why do we do it?

'Every project has challenges, and every project has its rewards.' - Stephen SchwartzClick To Tweet

When you tackle a project, you know that it will not be easy.
You will suffer but in the end, you will learn something from it.
Continue reading “On the subject of projects… and pandas”

How can I (be) inspire(d)?

I started taking pictures of toys because of others.

At first, I had seen the work of Chris McVeigh, AvanautSmokebelch and Brett Wilson among others and what they created inspired me.

I wanted to do like them, but not exactly like them.
I was inspired but I did not want to copy.

I believe that our imagination does not have any limits so why going the simplest path and just copy the work of others.
We are creative people, so let’s create.

'There are really three parts to the creative process. First there is inspiration, then there is the execution, and finally there is the release.' - Eddie Van HalenClick To Tweet

Let’s focus on the first part.
What are my inspirations?
How do I get my ideas?

What is my recipe for making pictures?
What are the ingredients that inspire me?

As I said in my last post, I can get photo ideas everywhere so I write them down not to forget them. My ideas arrive when I don’t expect them: at work during a boring meeting (the best time I get my mind to float away…), during my daily commutes, in my shower (I don’t have waterproof sticky notes, though), …  Continue reading “How can I (be) inspire(d)?”

Some more reflection…

Before leaving the last station, I wanted to share with you one last thought on the subject. One last reflection about “Reflections“: my thought process when it comes to photographing toys.

To be perfectly honest, most of my pictures are made on the fly. Spur of the moment. When I am somewhere, I have some many minifigures with me and I come up with an idea, inspired by the location. Some ideas are good and some not so much.

But from time to time, an image or a concept pops into my mind. So I write it down. I am using for that some virtual sticky notes with Google keep (a free app on my phone), to trace my ideas. It all starts with a couple of words.

“A stormtrooper looking overboard a boat and seeing my sigfig for reflection”

Continue reading “Some more reflection…”