The Dark Room: Shooting a Series with Life-Size Models and 1:6 Scale Props

I was listening to my favorite band Sentenced and their album “The Chilly White Light”. Whereas listening I started pondering, “Should I make images from the songs in my favorite album?”

Properly, that was the distinctive plan in February 2020. Now ideas have gone on their strategy and I’ve over forty sketches in my sketchbook. I’ve picked some objects from totally different bands too like Queen, Metallica, Mötorhead, Stam1na, and so forth…

When ideas started to circulation into, I ended up pretty shortly within the idea all the images would have the an identical environment. Some sort of room or a cell with a darkish and depressing actually really feel. It was clear from the beginning that images would even have some surreal and dreamlike components. It is a assortment of images of what a darkish ideas may seem to be from the inside. With all the dangerous concepts that circulation into inside the brains and feelings that take you down. The darkish room inside your head.

I’ve myself suffered despair, which lastly led to my retirement from my laptop engineering job. Fairly the alternative, many may assume darkish topics are therapeutic and make them actually really feel larger and not the alternative strategy spherical. The comparable goes for very darkish lyrics from bands like Sentenced.

I’ve had many suggestions on these images saying that it reminds them of the COVID situation. I really feel that some images match properly in describing the COVID situation for a lot of, although it was not my preliminary goal.

I’ve completed pretty a lot of self-portraits and because of the pandemic, it was a easy decision to get once more to the roots of how I started photographing people and try this as a self-portrait enterprise.

Subsequent, I needed to take into account how to do this on a tight funds. Establishing the room was not an alternative. I was going to {{photograph}} these in my dwelling studio (aka entrance room), so the room wanted to be constructed digitally. Quite a few the better props similar to the coffin and guillotine had been moreover out of attain in precise dimension, so I made a choice to make these on a 1:6 scale.

The dwelling studio home sooner than conversion. Lounge mode.
The dwelling studio home after conversion. Dwelling studio mode.


I usually like my characters to not have eyes displaying in my images. I really feel that the character is a far more impersonal and image-less portrait when the eyes don’t current. It sort of offers additional room for the exact story inside the image.

I ended up using a simple outfit with a sleeveless shirt, trousers from the navy snowsuit, and a masks. I wanted it to be clear and not vibrant so it acquired’t take an extreme quantity of consideration. The shirt and trousers had been easy to accumulate nonetheless a masks I wanted to make myself.

Since that’s a self-portrait sequence and I’m working in a dwelling studio alone. I’ve to take the masks off constantly after usually 5 frames (visibility inside the masks could also be very restricted as is predicted). So wrapping the bandage was not an alternative for every shot. After some DIY work, I managed to get the look I wanted to a masks that is comparatively fast to positioned on and take off.

The masks.
Turning into.
The base of the masks.


I used as many precise props as potential — points like a phone, razor, and skeleton (which I’ve already used as a mannequin for testing lighting and setup pictures) — nonetheless some had been just too big to assemble. I assemble these on a 1:6 scale. I’m sure the guillotine, coffin, and the remaining would have been good in our yard afterward nonetheless I’m not sure neighbors would love these as a lot I would.

For photographing 1:1 images and 1:6 fashions, I measured 1:1 setup precisely to have the power to breed it and moreover to scale it down for the 1:6 fashions. The goal was to get a associated perspective and delicate to every 1:1 and 1:6 images. Precise shadows had been crucial too since they are not very easy to do in Photoshop. When mixing 1:6 to life-size images in Photoshop, I needed to make use of some liquify and puppet warp to match images. Nevertheless after all the cautious preparation I had completed, they fitted collectively pretty correctly.


To get the room I wanted with out breaking the monetary establishment, I constructed the background absolutely in Photoshop. All pictures had been shot in opposition to a grey background and partitions and particulars had been added inside the submit. I uncover that a grey background works very properly if you end up planning in order so as to add an environment using textures in submit.

I’ve always photographed fascinating textures and particulars for later use, so my personal assortment of textures have grown pretty big via the years. I was able to make use of those to assemble the environment for this image sequence. I managed to get it nearly how I most well-liked it. A darkish and distressing room.

Closing Phrases

I’m not arguing that it wouldn’t be good to have a funds to make this in precise life in a precise studio. Nevertheless I’m pretty sure that will not ever be potential. Nonetheless, with 1:6 fashions and Photoshop, I might make my ideas into images with out making compromises that I need not make. And on the same time defending the funds first price for an beginner photographer.

“Haunting Concepts.” Chair is 1:6 scale, “helmet” is a kitchen bowl and conduits are bathe hoses.
“Pour S*** Down Your Neck”
“Psychological Wheel”

Regarding the creator: Petri Damstén is a advantageous paintings photographer from Kuopio, Finland. The opinions expressed on this text are solely these of the creator. Photos performs two roles in Damstén’s life. It’s a passion that started after his retirement from his day job as a software program program engineer by which he has a BSc diploma. For him, picture-making can be a very therapeutic course of to deal with feelings and concepts in a creative strategy. Self-portraiture has always carried out a big half in Petri’s images and they’re usually darkish and/or humouristic. His images have acquired many awards in Finland and internationally collectively with Fotofinlandia finalist and PX3 Gold In Paris France. You could possibly discover additional of his work on his website, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. This textual content was moreover printed here.

Source link