Kinder, Star Wars & forced perspective


Imagine if Yoda landed in Australia today? Would he head to Circular Quay? Check out all those hippy-dippy shops in Newtown? What about if Darth Vader found himself Downunder? What would he do? To celebrate the Australian arrival of the new Kinder Surprise Star Wars toys, British photographer Andrew Whyte has created a neat collection of images – using only his smartphone and forced perspective photography – to imagine what the iconic characters’ first moments on earth would be like.

ObiWan_RiverUsing the forced perspective photographic technique, Whyte has created an optical illusion that makes the ten Kinder Surprise Star Wars toys appear larger than they actually are – to creatively and seamlessly place them within real-world scenarios.

From a Clone Trooper hanging out at the skate park, R2-D2 and C-3PO enjoying a picnic in the sunshine, to Yoda picking up some groceries, Whyte came up with some sweet pics. He says: “The beauty of forced perspective photography is that anyone with a smartphone and a bit of imagination can have a go themselves. Picture a pebble as a mountain, or a puddle as a river – if the photos bring a smile to your face, then you know you’re doing it right!”

Think you can create forced perspective photos to match Andrew Whyte’s? Discover the new Kinder Surprise Star Wars toys and share your top shots here.

C3PO_R2D2_PicnicAndrew Whyte’s 10 Top Tips for Forced Perspective Photography:
1. Tell a story – look for humorous scenes that make it easy to convey what’s going on. Children make great storytellers so get them involved whenever you can
2. Get close to your subject – the key to creating successful forced perspective images is scale. Using your smartphone lets you to shoot from just a few inches away, meaning that everything in the background looks smaller
3. Adapt your toy – position its head, arms and legs to look like it’s part of the scene, whether that’s one hand up cheering a cycle race or positioning the toy to face into a sunset
4. Work with what you’ve got – most smartphones perform better in good lighting conditions. Sunny days allow you to create striking silhouettes with your toys, but you’ll need to watch out for your own shadow appearing in the shot. Wet conditions also provide challenges but offer a great opportunity to play with reflections. And if it’s windy, double-sided sticky tape is the perfect way to keep your toy grounded!
5. Play with props – bring in other toys to enhance the scene or adapt
6. Know your app – the built-in camera will usually be fine but some apps give you extra control, like being able to control the focus and brightness (exposure) separately
7. Tap to focus – hold your device really still and tap on the screen to identify where you want the focus to be. The more accurate you are, the sharper your photo will look, and you’ll add depth to your image too
8. Get the look – use other apps or add filters to tune the look and feel of your photo. A vintage look can work well for beach scenes whereas city life often looks best very high contrast. SnapSeed is a powerful, versatile app that’s simple to use
9. Charge your battery – sounds simple, but spending time taking photos with your smartphone can consume lots of battery. Go out with a full charge to ensure you never run out of battery in the middle of setting up the perfect shot
10. Remember to have fun – if it feels frustrating, you’re doing it wrong. Follow these basic steps and in a matter of minutes you can create and share fun images that make people smile.