Little People Photography

Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0
Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0 | Source

Very little people is not about photographing real people who happen to be short but rather the project involves using tiny figures of people placed or arranged in simulated real life situations and on familiar scenes such as on the street or in a comical pose and capturing these images.

There are many hobby stores that do sell figures of people which are often used in modeling projects. Many of these figures are unpainted and you will have to dedicate some time in painting them to look like they are real. You will probably have to arrange them next to equal size props such as tiny cars and other props in order to give the scene a more realistic sense.

You will need a lens capable of macro magnification and a good tripod that does allow you to get low to the ground as many of the poses will be on it. A good ring flash unit is a helpful light source to have also.

You can do night shots, day shots and many other scenarios but you should think about what poses would fit your purpose before arranging your tiny subjects.

There are some artist doing this already, especially one in England by the name of Slinkachu who poses his subjects on regular everyday locations, captures their images and lets them to be found by anyone with a keen eye. This photographer also paints designs on common garden variety snails and after photographing them lets them go to either to be found by others or just continue of their merry little lives. It is worth noting that non toxic paints are used, thus no harm comes to the snails.

This project is fun and takes on an arts & crafts atmosphere because you will need to spend some time carefully painting your figures and props to make them look as if they were real.

For more of a comical twist. you can have your tiny subjects appear to be interacting with life size subjects including real people such as having one of these tiny subjects appear to be cleaning the eyeglasses of a real person while he or she is wearing them.

CC BY 2.0
CC BY 2.0 | Source
https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/
https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ | Source

Have fun with the project but don't just place these figures just anywhere. Your goal is to arrange them as if they were really doing an everyday activity or actually behaving as mundanely as possible.

Your subjects should be as realistically painted as you can and so should any props that you choose to add to the scene.

As far as using live props such as snails, although many people will not really pay too much attention to them, they do play an important part in our ecosystem and I causally do not use them except when doing a photographic project on them specifically.

Other photographers have also used live insects such as ants to interact with the tiny figures and the photos do come out very well and the insects don't really suffer any ill effects from the interaction other than being disturbed from their daily routines to which they quickly get back to after the end of the scene is completed.

Whether you choose to use live subjects to add to the shoot is completely up to your discretion, just avoid haring any in any way or to expose them to major disruptions which is most often than not easier said than done.

Aim for the unusual and the strange yet try to make the scene have an air of "reality".

When using a macro lens do make an attempt not to focus so closely on the subjects that you completely eliminate its surroundings. The environmental factors or location where you pose your subjects must be visible and recognizable to the audience if they are to make sense of the scale and the subject theme as well as allowing them to see the scenario in order to compare the "realities" of the real and the make believe.

CC BY 2.0
CC BY 2.0 | Source
https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/
https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ | Source

Interested in such a project?

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© 2012 Luis E Gonzalez

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