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Tongal Documentary: Toy Photographer Mitchel Wu - Larger Than Life

Updated: May 12


Creating this short documentary for the creative community at Tongal was incredible. It's such a different experience creating in front of the camera for an audience as opposed to shooting alone for myself or for a client. It adds a completely different layer of complexity - one that requires a bit of self-awareness and a lot of thinking on my feet. And talking out loud while going through my creative process is something I have to continually work at. And of course a shoot date and schedule has to be set well in advance, so come rain or shine - or in this case, heavy winds - I have to be prepared to shoot. In most other circumstances I'd just wait a day or two for better conditions.

We filmed roughly six hours to get this six minutes of content. During that six hours I created and photographed three different setups using three different toys. That's a lot considering the added complexity and heavy wind I mentioned earlier. In this case I wanted to show three very different types of toys using three different practical effects. I hope you enjoy it!

I did several takes with the fireworks as I tried to find my rhythm of creating two practical effects simultaneously. They are surprisingly loud when exploding! My sequence was to light the fuses, turn off and put down the torch, and then fire both the compressed air and remote shutter release at the same time. So thankful for understanding neighbors!


Shout out to my friends at Boss Fight Studio for providing me with incredible figures from their Virtuvian H.A.C.K.S. line - Queen Solan, Female Knight of Accord, and the Orcs, as well as Kawiki the elk and the horse from their Mighty Steeds collection. All of them are incredibly articulated and are a dream to work and play with.


These are the finished images I created for this documentary.

Stick and Orc in it - they're done! Order this incredible Boss Fight bundle of 6 figures at a 20% savings HERE.


Anger Issues!


Leap Frog


Thank you to the amazing creative team that made all of this possible:

Made on Tongal by Ramon Zubia - Instagram: @ramzuto

Shot by Henry Zaballos - Instagram: @henryzaballos

Edited by Theo Rosenthal - Instagram: @smurfyrose

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