Toy photography without the toy

Have you ever taken a toy photo without the toy?

Well, maybe not quite without the toy, but certainly without the figure.

As toy photographers, we so often photograph figures. I mean, that’s the whole point right? Telling stories about and with our toy figures, be it LEGO, Playmobil, Hasbro, Hot Toys or any other kind of toy you photograph! We are photographers and story tellers and we love our figures.

That said, I wanted to try something different. So I started an ongoing series of photos featuring objects alone, without a figure, or only showing very small parts of the figure (a hand, for example). I wanted to tell some stories without characters. I wanted to showcase some of the wonderful accessories that are available to us.

For example, this magnifying glass is one of my favourite accessories in LEGO. I mean, it actually magnifies (a bit)! So many awesome ways to use this!

A magnifying glass that actually magnifies? How awesome.

#nofigurefriday

I thought it would be cool to start a new hashtag to go alongside this idea of photographing our toy accessories.  So I’d like to introduce #nofigurefriday.

This Friday why not join in the fun over on G+, Instagram or whatever social media channel you use, and take a toy photograph without the figure.

Pick your favourite accessory, the one that speaks to you, snap a photo and post it up with the hashtag!

Maybe it will be a tiny cup of coffee…

 

A happy cup of coffee left on the side.

or your favourite hat…

Where there’s a cowboy hat, there’s probably a spaceman somewhere.

or maybe even some tasty sushi.

Everyone loves a little sushi!

You decide!

I’ll be watching the hashtag over the day so I’d love to see your photos appear on G+ or Instagram!

– Lizzi
Stepping on Bricks

Donate Checkmate

With Melbourne’s Brickvention, Australia’s premier LEGO fan convention, just around the corner, it’s time to say thank you. This year’s Charity Silent Auction is looking like it’s going to be bigger than ever. Thanks to the generosity of the community.

This year, Toy Photographers and #brickstameet have buddied up to organise a silent auction of LEGO photographs to raise money for the Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne. Andrew (@cheepjokes) and I have been busy chasing artists, collecting submissions, printing art, printing bidding forms, and designing the layout of the photographs submitted for the action. Actually, we will be having two auctions, one on Saturday and another on Sunday. Continue reading Donate Checkmate

We’re taking a holiday!

We’re taking a well-earned holiday break over Christmas and the New Year.

Toy Photographers will be resting and recharging their batteries in preparation for a jam-packed 2018 filled with exciting new things on top of all the wonderful things that we already do.

On behalf of Shelly, myself and the rest of the Toy Photographers team, we wish you a very merry Christmas. We’d also like to wish you a safe and happy New Year. And here’s to a relaxing holiday season, filled with family, friends and toy photography!

Holiday: May you beer be cold and your wieners tasty!
May your beer be cold and your wieners tasty!

We’ll see you all in 2018 for a bigger, better and more exciting year.

– Brett

If you’ve made through all my blathering and ended up here, you should sign up to our weekly email round up where you’ll get a recap of all the babbling from the week.

And while you’re doing things, you should definitely join our G+ Community where we hold monthly contests with prizes and lots of other cool stuff too.

Toy Envy Makes the World a Better Place

This post starts with a little toy envy and ends with (spoiler alert!) an act of kindness. Its a story about a great act of kindness and the joy of Christmas shared across the globe. But first, let me introduce myself. My name is Nicole and I’m fairly new to the Toy Photography scene. I may be new, but I’ve been enjoying every minute of the journey.

I started my toy photography IG account, @this.tiny.world, back in July and I’ve been embraced and encouraged by this community. Thank you! I’ve yet to join the G+ community but I have plans to! I simply need to find the time and patience to figure out another social media platform. Meanwhile, in my journey through the many Instagram feeds of wonderful toy photographers, I stumbled across Shelly’s feed. I immediately became a fan. Here is where I should confess that amongst all the various collections of tiny toys I had up to this point, Lego had not yet entered the picture.  After seeing how they can be used so creatively, I quickly became interested. And so another collection begins. 🙂

Enough about my journey into toy photography, I’m here to talk about toy envy.   Continue reading Toy Envy Makes the World a Better Place

Ho! Ho! Whoa!

With Christmas approaching, Shelly suggested a Secret Santa gift exchange amongst the Google+ Toy Photographers Moderators.

Eight Moderators signed up, each being allocated another to find a $20US gift to add to their toy photography arsenal.

Buying a toy for a toy photographer. Easy, right? Not necessarily.

This seemingly simple gift exchange has morphed into an exercise in investigation. Trawling though feeds to gauge an interest. Scanning photos for prospective gifts that might me absent from their extensive collection. Examining posts for a gift that is likely to complement an existing assembly, or send the recipient off in a new direction in their toy photography.

Xmas has been X’d
No colored lights, no shopping sprees
No more presents under dead trees
NOFX – Xmas Has Been X’ed

Continue reading Ho! Ho! Whoa!

Failing to focus

I went to visit my family this past weekend, and finding myself with an hour to spare, I dragged my partner to the beach to get a few toy photos.

One of the photos I wanted to take was of Bert, my Fabuland elephant. I had a little trouble getting the shot I wanted, as shown by the photo grid from Lightroom below.

Too much light, too much shadow, not in focus. I could not get it right.

I had a few issues. I was shooting straight into the sun, I was failing to get my camera to focus as I wanted and I was getting the depth of field wrong for the style of shot I was after. Continue reading Failing to focus

Toy Photography Yoga

Toy photography yoga is a little know branch of the more common discipline of yoga. Toy photography yoga, like the other varieties of yoga, Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism, helps to promote physical and emotional well being.

 yoga

noun | yo·ga |\ ˈyō-gə \

1

capitalized :a Hindu theistic philosophy teaching the suppression of all activity of body, mind, and will in order that the self may realize its distinction from them and attain liberation

2

:a system of physical postures, breathing techniques, and sometimes meditation derived from Yoga but often practiced independently especially in Western cultures to promote physical and emotional well-being

We’ve talked about putting the fun back into toy photography, but did you know there’s also a health component to the practice of toy photography yoga? By practicing toy photography yoga on a regular basis you will exercise your body, practice breath control and achieve a sense of well being not found in traditional forms of yoga or photography. Continue reading Toy Photography Yoga

Fundamentally Fun

Things have been pretty heavy on the blog of late. There have been some meaty subjects to sink our teeth into, which is cool. But, as I vegetarian, I thought it time to step away from all this meaty content, and get back to my roots. Fun.

Essentially Entertaining

I started posting LEGO photos back in 2012, with simple photos accompanied by silly captions and puns. Scouring the interwebs for puns was the source of inspiration for my photos. If a pun made me giggle, I’d then create a LEGO version of it.

“Today was good. Today was fun. Tomorrow is another one.”
– Dr. Seuss

This was back in my early days on Instagram. It was before Instagram was flooded with users hell-bent on chasing numbers and fixated on follower counts. I think most of my early photos ended up in the feeds of 100 followers. But that was cool, I wasn’t doing it for numbers; I was doing it for fun. Continue reading Fundamentally Fun

When in Doubt, Accessorize!

When Shelly discussed her love of shooting in threes, I decided to take a look at my own catalog of images to see if there were similar patterns in my own work. Luckily, one quickly emerged: accessorizing.

Rather than bring together several elements to make a photo work, I sometimes like to add just a single accessory. These small but mighty pieces can carry the story all by themselves. Continue reading When in Doubt, Accessorize!