My take on traveling with toys

To travel with toys

I travel a lot for work. And during this summer my family and I were on a three week journey in California. So with that experience I thought that I too, like Jennifer, Reiterlied, James and many more before them… ought to give you my thoughts about traveling with toys. Or being a toy photographer while traveling.

I work in small circles

But before I start, you have to understand that I photograph toys in a really limited area. I have a tendency to limit my photography a lot because that is me, I like to play safe ūüėČ

In my latest project I have limited myself in terms of the subject, the choice of photo spaces and when I photograph to get the light I prefer. One way to look at this is that I have tight boundaries for ‘where’ and ‘how’ I photograph. These boundaries are challenged when I‚Äôm traveling or when I find myself in a new place. A journey makes it impossible for me to know where I can photograph or how the light will be. This is a huge challenge. To be totally honest, I usually don’t photograph toys when I travel.

Traveling means that I have to find places to work in. I have to find out when, where and how to make my images. I have to find the answers to questions like: when and where is the best time to get the light the way I like? Or how windy will it be? Or will I find a place in the rain where I can work or not? If I don’t find the answers Im looking for, what is my plan B? And all of this in a place that is new to me‚Ķ ¬†This makes the process of creating an image a much bigger and much more difficult process than normal.

A good day…

A good day traveling with toys can be a positive challenge. It is a day which makes me see and find new solutions. Traveling while in the midst of a 365-project gives me an opportunity to look at light in a new way, to look at my subject in a new context. But a less good day traveling with toys is just a struggle, a must – a picture should be taken or rather done (because of the 365 project).

No, I’m not spontaneously saying: “Yippie” to the idea of traveling with toys … I prefer to photograph where I can plan my process… in an environment that I know or am familiar¬†with and where I can read the light. Working in a new setting is too much of a surprise. I prefer to work in the same place over and over again to get to know the light, how it changes during the day and how I can work with it. I need time, and traveling with toys doesn’t always gives me the opportunity to do that.

But sometimes I get lucky. Like when we stayed in a home in Fresno, CA for an extended stretch of time. I was able to examine the light and the photographic possibilities in the backyard. I was able to do make the most of the light and the limitations that came with the subject and the surroundings. And luckily I got some amazing images like those below. But most of the time when I‚Äôm traveling with toys I have to work in light that is too hard or a setting I can’t control. This forces me to create images that are just ‚ÄĚok‚ÄĚ or replicas of better ones I have done before‚Ķ



A princess – is that a subject for me?

I don’t know what to think when I refer to when the toy of my choise is¬†a princess. While I may not know the answer¬†I’ve been thinking a lot about what it means to be a princess. I’ve been thinking a lot about the idea of a princess because¬†I don‚Äôt believe in a monarchy style of¬†government. The idea that someone should be born to a profession or a position isn’t anything I¬†can support.

Waiting for a prince

But if we ignore the political aspects of the title, the title also raises a lot of other connotations. Every future princess seems to be waiting for a prince. In many fairy tales her role is to be passive. She is there¬†only to be rescued from evil, the victim of revenge or enchantment. In the fairy tales where the princess is a figure that is active (not passive), her role is reduced to liberating the prince, by a kiss or her ‚Äútrue‚ÄĚ love. Continue reading A princess – is that a subject for me?

Toys are the best subject for photography

On this blog, we get to read different photographers statement about ‘why?’ they do toy photography. The reasons for doing toy photography may vary from photographer to photographer, but we all seem to share a common love for the subject:¬†toys. Toys¬†and photography are closely linked together, in what we call toy photography. Thinking about the subject,¬†I’ve come to the conclusion¬†that toys may be the very best subject for a photographer. I don‚Äôt think you will question me, but I‚Äôll share my reasons anyway. Continue reading Toys are the best subject for photography

For whom?

What part does¬†the viewer play in the art of photography? What do you want the¬†viewer¬†to see? ¬†When I wrote my blog post “Why” the other day, I got a question from Reggie about¬†how to get a bigger audience for once toy-photographs. And that got me reflecting on¬†“for whom am I doing this?”

And what part does the audience play in my photography? Continue reading For whom?