Lenny Raptor – Puncture Proof


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Lenny’s bike is so small he doesn’t have to worry about nails!???

You really never know when the right time is to take a toy photograph.  I always carry my gear with me which consists of a clik camera bag and the Olympus EM5 along with several legacy glass lenses and of course my Lego and other toys.  The lens I prefer and use most often is the Minolta Rokkor 55 mm 1.4f.  It is the perfect lens for a good balance in detail and excellent bokeh backgournds.  I also have a Sigma 60mm AF lens and my old trusty Russian lens the Helios 44mm.  That Russian lens is built like a tank!  and it brings in some nice light leak details that add a bit of glow to the shot.

Anyway, I was on my way out to get a load of worked up Alabaster sculpting stone and we stopped to fuel up and get some breakfast.  Actually it was so my brother could get some breakfast.  I had eaten something on my way out so I used this opportunity to jump out and grab a few shots with my Lego.

We were at the Maverik gas station (Adventures First Stop) on the west side of Cedar City and I noticed a small broken down pioneer house right next door.  The ceiling had caved in long ago and it looked as if the stone walls and foundation had either sunk several feet – or maybe it was built that way as sort of a fruit cellar…  either way it was sunken and sad looking.  The wood was rotted and had deep grooves throughout.  The grooves matched the size of the tires on Lenny’s bike so it was the perfect setting to get a quick shot.  I setup Lenny and got a few great shots in before my brother was back in the truck honking for me.  I raced over – repacked my bag and jumped in.  Off to load the stone!

Lenny Rides in the Crisp morning Light


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Up bright and early before the sun hits the valley – that’s how Lenny rolls.

Early mornings are a great time to do toy photography.  I find that my mind is wide awake and ready for the day.

I took this shot while traveling down to my newly opened stone quarry.  I was traveling down the black ridge on Interstate 15 from Cedar City to St. George and the morning light was barely lighting the sky.  I decided to take an early exit near Pinto, UT and head towards the Pine Valley Mountain Range.  The  snow capped mountains lit up pink in the sunrise and the valley below was still in the shade of the black ridge.  I hurried up a dirt road and parked.  The light was changing every minute and I was striving to get a few shots all along those changes.

The hood of the truck turned out to be a nice clean setup for a shot and the reflection of blue hid the fact that this old chevy had a dark green faded and rubbing off paint job.  The bright mountain range behind Lenny’s head was a great contrast which brought your eyes to his.  I made a rather steep angle with my camera because I wanted it to look like Lenny  was on the verge of a very steep ridge.  I liked the blues that the early morning shadows gave so I decided not to bother with the exposure at all.

Icy Sauna for Wampa


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Such a relaxing icy sauna for wampa… Even wampa deserves a day off.

I took my boys to school this morning and it was frigid!  And I mean frigid… It was 6 degrees F.  Bitterly cold.  I don’t know what I was thinking.  I don’t know why I thought it would be a good time to stop and take pictures.  I liked the thick frost that had formed on everything during the night and the snow piling on the long june grass made for some excellent little pockets of glowing caves.

I guess that is what made me get out.  Within seconds my fingers were no longer there.  They had become numb, and still I strived for a shot.  The snow turned out to be very hard to work with because it was not packed down at all.  It was so cold that the snow flakes had come to rest in a stillness that left tons of air between each flake.  I could literally blow the snow with one little puff through 8 inches and clear it to the ground below.  This was not ideal for my wampa figure.  I set him down ready to position him and he disappeared instantaneously.  I hadn’t been smart enough to bring gloves so reaching through the puffy snow seemed to cut my hands with coldness.  I could actually feel the sharp edges of the flakes as I brushed them aside.

I worked with what I had and added snow to the cave to compact it.  I had to add like four times the snow to compact it enough to hold my Wampa.  It worked though and the lighting had the glow I was looking for.  I wanted a warmth to the shot even though Hoth is far from warm.  I wanted the wampa to seem comfortable as he relaxed in a cave of fresh deep snow.  I think I succeeded here but I still think something is missing from this shot and I am not sure what it is?