As a child, Felix Hernandez had a huge imagination, locking himself in his room for hours to play with his toys. Now, the Cancun-based photographer and digital artist is putting that playtime to use by creating stunningly realistic photographs using scale models and ingenious camera angles. Hernandez worked to create a series of images for Audi that highlight the luxury brand’s R8 sports car, which typically retails for about $160,000.
Rather than splashing out on a full-scale car and set requirements, Hernandez was able to create the desired effects using a scale model that cost only $40. “I shoot my models in my studio with studio flashes,” explains Hernandez. “It’s similar to shooting a product, but again, if you want to give the sense of realism you have to think in the scale. I take lighting principles and apply them to a smaller scale.”
With an innovative imagination and some advanced planning, Hernandez achieves big results. Taking us all behind the scenes, he shares his thought process about digital manipulation in the finished photographs. “I love photo manipulation and digital art, but what’s really cool is doing as much as you can in-camera. For snow scenes, I use wheat flour. For desert scenes, I use corn flour. For atmosphere, I add smoke. For rain, I spray water. For droplets, I add corn syrup.”
Check out these finalized and work-in-progress shots to gain a glimpse behind the curtain, and fully appreciate the artistry. Want to dabble in scale model photography yourself? Hernandez also teaches workshops in Mexico and abroad.
Behind the Scenes