Chris Pratt is One of Us

We have one more reason to love Chris Pratt! He is legendary in the LEGO universe for not having just one LEGO mini figure made after a movie character, but three! They are Emmet from the LEGO movie, Peter Quill from Guardians of the Galaxy and most recently Owen Grady from Jurassic World. Continue reading Chris Pratt is One of Us

PNW Toy Photographers Meet Up

In one week, on June 6th, we have planned the largest gathering of PNW Toy Photographers yet to assemble. We will be meeting at Seward Park at the Audubon Center, near the main entrance, and we want you to join us!

So far we have eight people (@Dinoczars, @Wiiman, @sunnymartini, @ThisBrick, @stephrcdore, @gwenji_,  @camrc_ and myself) have committed to coming out with toys and cameras in tow.  I know there are still a few people on the fence and I am hoping we can reach the magic number of ten. We have come along way since three strangers (@bricksailboat, @Dinoczars and myself) met in a Ballard pub over two years ago. I had no idea that this inauspicious beginning would grow into some of the most wonderful experiences I have had the privilege of participating in. These have included a stellar day on Mount Rainier, the incomparable Las Vegas Toy Safari and the Photo Walk that was part of the In Lego / We Connect week of festivities. Not to mention the numerous casual gatherings with BrickSailboat, Wiiman and Dinoczars as we have discovered various parks around Seattle.

When toy photographers gather in any numbers, good times are sure to follow.

So, if you are in the Seattle area I hope you will consider joining  in the fun; all ages, toys, and camera types are welcome. We will be gathering at 10:30 am for about two hours of toy photography fun.

If you decide to  join us, I promise you a morning of fun, friends and toys… lots of toys.

-xxSJC

If you live in Europe and are interested in joining Me2, Avanaut and myself in Stockholm on August 28th, then please check out our plans for another epic toy photographers meet-up

Everything is more fun with friends
Everything is more fun with friends

Choices

I would be lying to you and to myself if I said I took photographs only for the joy of it. Sure, at some point that was true, but it’s also true that in the last year that has all changed. As doors and opportunities have presented themselves I have made choices that have taken me down a path that has led to a certain amount of success.

Some of those choices I have been happy with, others, not so much.

Continue reading Choices

Frank

I know I have mentioned this several times, but inspiration sometimes comes from the weirdest places. Recently I watched the movie “Frank” which tells the story of one aspiring band who is fronted by a man who never removes his papier-mâché head. Just the place to find treasures like:

[clickToTweet tweet=”When you think you’ve gone far enough, go farther.” quote=”When you think you’ve gone far enough, go farther.”]

Continue reading Frank

@TheCourtous

Today’s Feature Friday is none other than @thecourtous; home of Brickland’s very own lego soap opera, lego Courtney and a large cast of real and fictional charectors. If you’re not familiar with Brickland, it is where various signature figs engage in skullduggery, intrigue and romance. More than a few disasters have befallen the inhabitants of Brickland, both man made and natural, and we are kept on the edge of our seats on a weekly basis.

Continue reading @TheCourtous

“Yes” may not be the right answer

A few weeks ago there was a lot of buzz in the Instagram LEGO toy photography community because several members were asked by the “mother ship”  to use their photographs. I think it is great that LEGO is supporting their fans, but as a member of the creative class, it is prudent to ask a few questions before you say “Yes”. Continue reading “Yes” may not be the right answer

here’s where it all began

it was july 7, 2013. i was in a long line at the grocery store. it was a summer day and sunshine-starved danes (yes, we are often starved for sunshine in the middle of the summer in denmark) were piling their baskets with grillables and rosé and rushing towards the register, to get home before the sunshine left again. the line was long and there was no sign of them calling another cashier to open another register, so i was stuck. as i was waiting, i glanced to my left and there was a display of small, shiny, colorful bags of LEGO minifigures. prominently depicted on the package was a minifigure of a guy in a chicken suit. i had a brood of hens at home of which i was inordinately fond and i thought, “i’ve gotta have that chicken suit guy,” so i grabbed a couple (or three) bags and tossed them in my basket. Continue reading here’s where it all began

The Joy of Art

I enjoy receiving ArtNetNews every morning in my mailbox. I enjoy the articles on the comings and goings of the fine art world. I feel like  a voyeur to this rarefied world of museums, galleries and million dollar art sales. It is a world I will never be a part of and I am just fine with that. The following headline reinforced this opinion:

Okwui Enwezor’s 56th Venice Biennale Is Morose, Joyless, and Ugly

Continue reading The Joy of Art

Watermarks – another point of view

Recently Mike wrote a post regarding the use or non use, as the case may be, of watermarking your photography. I want to give you my two cents on why I choose to watermark my photographs.

First I will say I agree with Mike that a watermark shouldn’t be a distraction. If you choose to use a watermark make sure its well designed and not a visual distraction. If you aren’t handy with fonts, consider paying a design professional to create a unique logo for you to help you stand out. With powerful apps like Watermark+ you can determine color, density and size of your watermark to minimize the visual impact on your image.

Second, I believe in branding.  By creating a unique logo that you use consistently over all your social media platforms, you will help fans identify you as the source of your creative photography faster. Images are passed around on the web, that is a fact of life, so why not have a way for people to quickly identify you as the original creator? I’m not  a particularly lazy person and even I wouldn’t do a reverse image search; I certainly don’t expect the average toy photography fan to do one.

I was intrigued by Mike’s comment that he wants his images to look their best on the Internet. For me that is not a concern. With social media apps like Instagram, that limit size and shape, I think that expectation is unrealistic. I want my images to look their best when they are hanging on someone’s wall, not being looked at on a computer, or worse yet, a mobile device.

Finally, the most important reason I watermark my images is pride. Frankly I’m proud of the images I take and I want the world to know I took them. Just like I sign and number all my prints for sale, I watermark all my photographs; my watermark is essentially my digital signature.

I respect anyones decision to watermark or not; there are no easy answers to this question. I personally feel the pros of watermarking outweigh the cons, if the watermark is well designed and applied tastefully.

~xxsjc

My Copyright Lawyer
If you have any further questions you can contact my intellectual property lawyer.

Which camp do you fall into and why?

Epic Toy Photography Safari – Stockholm Edition

When Dinoczars and I organized January’s Epic Toy Photo Safari in Las Vegas we set in motion something bigger than just your regular run of the mill photo walk. We gathered  together an amazing selection of likeminded plastic photographers from across western North America for an incredible weekend. Little did we know where it would lead when we repeated this grand experiment in March while Vesa and Me2 where visiting me in Seattle. Now it seems that the old continent has been left out in the cold and wants to get in on all this awesome toy photography goodness.

I know my good old counterpart (Me2) has been talking to some of you in Europe about creating a photo walk on the old continent, and so I have decided to turn ideas and vague plans into a reality. I will be journeying to the old continent and we will be having our own  Epic Toy Photography Safari on the other side of the pond, in Stockholm, Sweden on August 29th.

All the details are still unclear and Me2 and Crew are working on these exact  details (it looks awesome, we just need to get our proverbial ducks in order) but for now, we can already tell you this: reserve the date and be ready to meet me and the rest of the creative collective in Stockholm on Saturday August 29th.

This event will be  open to any toy photographer who is interested in shooting with like minded people for a day. If past photo safaris are any indication we will share toys, trade photography tips and tricks, create group shots and generally geek out as only a group of toy photographers can. In short, it will be EPIC!

I hear rumors that Balakov and Me2 will be teaming up to do an advanced class with strobes. Seriously, could this get any cooler?

So save the date, August 29th, and join Me2, Avanaut, Balakov myself and few other intrepid toy photographers for this special weekend. If you have any interest in attending please let us know in the comments so we can plan accommodations.

We will post periodic updates to let you know how our plans are developing. In the mean time, I hope you will check your calendar and begin making plans to join us in Stockholm on August 29th.

~ xxSJC

This event is family friendly. Me2, Avanaut and myself will all have family in attendance.

If you have any questions please leave them in the comments or contact me directly. 

Watermarked Photo-9
Is this the way to the “Old Country”?