A relative newcomer to the community , Eugene is eager to make his mark and to continue developing his skills as a photographer.
He works with a really gloomy tone with minimal light to create an atmosphere of tension and drama with the sole light source being an LED light stick which is moved back and forth during the shoot to illuminate various details on the subjects that he is capturing. We caught up with Eugene and he chats to us about his experience as a amateur photographer and his process behind each shot.
“I started doing Toy Photography in May 2016 when I discovered that my phone had a Pro-Camera Mode and stumbled upon some awesome Toy Photography pages on Instagram. I’ve been using a Samsung Galaxy Note 5 to do 99.99% of my shots and I’m aiming to keep using my phone as my “signature tool” in capturing these ideas. I also can’t afford a professional camera but I can afford all the action figures in my shots; ironic I know. I’m educating myself from the ground up on photography but it’s fun playing with settings & capturing something you never thought you’d see.
Sometimes I’ll do outdoor shots but I really enjoy doing my low-lighting shots because I feel that low light captures all the lines, glares, and brings a sinister realism to an action figure. When I’m capturing these shots, I don’t have a stable light source so I hold LED Light Strips in my hand while I have my phone on a tripod. I consistently move the lights ever so slightly to get that little extra illumination in a dark corner or to add that little extra glare on the figure. What’s great is utilising the voice-capture on my phone so I can focus on keeping my hands still in that very moment without having to reach for the shutter button. I have to say my artistic direction is to try and bring out “the sinister” and “the epic” out of an action figure. I think back to when I was a kid before technology was the primary source of entertainment.
I remember utilising my imagination to the by fullest creating battle scenes with G.I. Joes, Star Wars Toys, X-Men Toys, etc. and being able to create a movie in my head and how I wanted that movie to play out. Now that I have been doing this for about 6 months, I feel like a kid again. Well a big kid…in an adult body…like my Instagram Bio. Now that I’m being influenced and inspired by an action figure’s detail and pose-ability I feel that I can do that again: I can create that scene from my imagination’s movie.
To make this experience even greater is when I listen to Film Scores from Hans Zimmer, John Williams, or even Daft Punk when they scored Tron: Legacy. I’ll listen to their compositions and imagine a scene that would work well for that track or specific moment of the track, and I’ll try to build and capture that scene with my figures. Of course there are some radical shots that cross my mind with some of these compositions that would challenge me, but that’s the joy of being in full creative control of your own Toy Photography Universe.”
Be sure to keep up-to-date with Eugene’s work over on his Instagram page which can be reached via the link below. Feel free to leave a comment below to let us know your thoughts.