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  • Writer's picturemitchelwu

Mitchel Wu Toy Photography Behind the Scenes: Nightmare Before Christmas

Updated: Jun 11, 2021

I shot this image of Jack and Sally on my porch, where I actually do quite a few of my setups. I love the light there, and it's protected from the elements. It also doesn't hurt that it's right outside my front door, so it's extremely convenient! For this particular image I used a black background, in others I just use the plants and shrubs which can be seen in the back in the photos below. The clouds were created using Atmosphere Aerosol. Sometimes I use the the spray very subtly, other times I give it a much stronger presence. In this image I actually consider the clouds a third character in the scene. You can see how much atmosphere, character and depth it adds to the scene, much more than had I just used the black background alone. The tombstones are homemade - I simply cut them out of cardboard and gave them a quick paint using acrylic paints. Here's a couple images showing the setup on my porch.

DIY Tombstones

Camera gear and settings for this shot: Canon 5D3 with the Canon 135mm f/2L lens. Again, the clouds were created with Atmosphere Aerosol (use discount code MW10 for a special rate if purchasing from their website). I shot this image at f/2, ISO 1600 at 1/320 sec. My camera was secured to my new Manfrotto 057 Carbon Fiber tripod, giving me a rock solid base to work from. When my camera is off the tripod I'll have it either strapped to my wrist using the Spider Holster Hand Strap or it'll be in the Spider Holster on my waist. Of course all of my camera gear gets stored or transported in one of my awesome Lowepro camera bags. Final editing is first done in Lightroom, then finished in Photoshop. I use a Wacom Intuos Pro with the pen tool for much of my editing.


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