Thursday, October 30, 2014

Fast and Furious ...

I know I posted this shot of Teddy before.
Both here and on good old IG a while back.

I am sure some of you may remember it, but it feels like it was ages ago.
When Shelly only yesterday posted her view on the amount of digital noise we produce in this fast moving age of digital information, where images are yet another language to tell a quick story to friends and strangers alike (one picture says more than a thousand words) it is sometimes difficult to distinguish between the normal conversation we produce with our imagery (a selfie here, a foodie there, ...) and the significant ones you want to treat like a good book you want to take aside, enjoy when reading and foster in your library.

My dear good old IG is mostly about conversation in the here and now.
When @brickcentral announced their latest photo contest on teddy bears, they made it clear that only new pictures were allowed in the conversation.

For sure my blurry shot of Teddy disqualified as it was shot 17 days prior to the contest(*).
17 days.
Old News. ´
A lightyear in our digital conversation.

I could reshoot Teddy and get actually a better composition, a more intriguing look and resubmit it for the bear competition (I still have two days) and actually gain more likes and engagement on that shot because it is part of the conversation, but that would be partly fooling me as I would be recomposing a closed shoot.
It would be a remake of a significant moment that happend 17 days earlier.

Just like with a 365 day project (more on that later) competitions like this force you to take your creativity to the next level, reinvent and dont dwell on the past.
Practice and improve your skills and crafts and engage in the digital conversation.

It is a fantastic learning school, it is an enabler, it is the instant feedback loop of likes from the audience we all crave, and Avanaut explored in his first post here on Stuck In Plastic.

We are moving so fast and furious in our digital conversations we dont always take the time to look back and select the 12 most significant photos that will make it into our portfolio like Ansel said.

But now is a good time to stop and start looking back.

We are fast approaching the end of the year where we will all look back and start posting our best 12 photos of the year. Do think twice and not just select those that created the most conversation and likes, but look for those moments and images that stood out, that were significant and important for you, even if they drowned in the digital noise around you.

The ones you would print and stick to your wall.

The ones that may have been shot 17 days too early in the digital conversation we are constantly engaging in.

Your 12 significant ones.


(*) I am not grumpy I could not enter with Teddy, I luv the great folks over at @brickcentral and if you dont follow them on IG yet, go ahead and tag along as they bring great new features of talented photographers to you on a regular basis. I just thought it was a perfect example of the fast and furious speed we live in when we produce images as part of our conversation.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Few and Far Between

“ Twelve significant photographs in any one year is a good crop." –Ansel Adams
The godfather of the zone system, Ansel Adams, knew what he was talking about. Great photos, significant photos, are few and far between.

This is still true in this day and age when every one has a digital camera and the feedback loop is so short anyone can take a good photo. A good photo is not a significant photo. In fact, during any given year you might only take a handful of truly memorable images. Sure your odds will go up if you take thousands of photos in a year. But for most of us who aren't full time photographers, that probably isn't going to happen.

If I was going to be truly honest with myself about my underwater photographs...their might be 20 significant images in 20 years of work. It was never easy shooting nearly blind underwater with a slow shutter speed, on film no less. Capturing a useable image, much less a significant image, was its own victory. 

I have taken over 5500 Lego mini figure photos this year and I would be hard pressed to come up with eight images I would include in my portfolio. That ratio is slightly better than my underwater ratio of usable images to images shot, but still not that impressive. Luckily, when I look at those eight images they make me feel all "warm and fuzzy inside" (my sons phrase) and I know that it is all worth it.

So try not to get discouraged by the sheer number of images that need to be taken to get a significant image. Remember you are in good company: you, me and Ansel. 

What is your favorite image of the year? 
How many images do you have in your portfolio? 

"Now where?"

This is my new favorite photo of 2014 

Monday, October 27, 2014

Another Kind of Diary

Painting is just another way of keeping a diary. ~ Pablo Picasso
This also applies to me and my photography.

I love to look back at my photos and think about where I took them and who was with me at the time. Each photo is an instant flash back to (mostly) wonderful memories. This past week on G+ I have been sharing the few Lego photos I took while in Iceland last year. Looking at them today takes me immediately back there and I experience the exhilaration over again.

For me photography has always been a form of documentation; be it my emotions, my family or an unusually viewpoint of a particular place. It may not seem like one, but my photography is a visual journal of my day to day life.

I have always travelled with my Lego mini figures and my photographs represent the places I have been. Since this is on a micro scale a specific place may be difficult to identify. As the colors and textures of places differ, it is interesting to see those differences in the final shots. This can be especially obvious when viewed as a group.

I am curious how you view your photography.

What role does it play in your life?
Is it a book in the making?
Is it a documentation of your everyday life?
Is it reaction to world events around you?
I wonder if +Me2 takes his Lego with him when he travels for business?

~ xxsjc

Iceland October 2013

Arches NP, Utah, September 2014

What a difference a year can make. 

Sunday, October 26, 2014

The Foolish Lego

As the weekend comes to a close I feel good about what I accomplished.  My project has moved forward and I have a doable to-do list ready for the start of the week. My list does includes three additional photos that I am waiting on the weather to finish, but that is tomorrows problem.

All of this does not mean that I didn't do a fair amount of diversionary activities in spite of my productivity. I finally read the entire Foolish Lego web comic. This comic was created by Dwaas, a Dutch AFOL who is almost through his second 365 challenge photo and started his web comic back in August of 2013. Just thinking about what he has accomplished makes me feel a little foolish for procrastinating on my own deadlines.

Once I had back read the Foolish Lego I followed a link on his blog and discovered a treasure trove of Lego Comics on the Brick Comic Network. It's literally a one stop shop for all my procrastination needs. I feel I can almost look forward to the next big deadline that I will undoubtedly try to avoid.

The next time you are cruising the internet looking for a diversion, check out Foolish Lego and the other Lego comics. I hope you will find them as entertaining and inspiring as I did.

~ xxsjc

Do you have a favorite Lego comic strip?
Did you have a productive weekend?

Beauty in the little things by Dwaas

Friday, October 24, 2014


noun: procrastination; plural noun: procrastinations
  1. the action of delaying or postponing something.

    We all do it; ok maybe not all of us. I know that Avanaut will be busy this weekend on his beloved fighter project and +Me2 will be flying off to foreign shores courtesy of Big Inc. My husband is out of town, my kids are busy and I am left with no more excuses, it is time to face my fears.

    The task I have set for myself isn't difficult, I simply need to edit 18 photos so they look vaguely similar. Piece of cake...right?

    It is not the work I am afraid of, because I like the work. It is the potential failure I don't want to face. I guess I need to relearn the following lesson:

    An essential aspect of creativity is not being afraid to fail. ~ Edwin Land

    So this weekend I will endeavor to be boring. I will cut my self off from the world, face my fears and try to get this project done. If I fall short of my artistic goals, I can remind myself that this is all part of the process.

    ~ xxsjc

Thursday, October 23, 2014

To Edit or not to Edit

How far will you go to fake your photos? That is a question I have asked myself quite a few times in the past few years. I started my toy photography thing with the noble idea of not making any changes to my photos after they were exposed in-camera, barring some colour and contrast tweaks. It was a challenge, a rule, I set for myself to make this more fun. I held on to that rule for quite a long time. It led to many discoveries—figuring out ways to create, say, a sun in the sky or rays of light in the air without adding them in Photoshop. I experimented a long time to get these things right in-camera and had quite a lot of fun with it.

Gradually, over the past couple of years, I have been slipping on the rule. After doing some commercial photography work, I realized that I will not die if I make things a little easier for myself from time to time. I still wouldn't add a sun in a post, but I began editing photos more liberally. Nothing exotic, not yet anyway.

You know those beautiful, heavily edited photographs that leave nothing to hope for, perfect in every way? I think they're fantastic, yet I find myself admiring the simple unfiltered photo just as well. While a technical brilliance can leave me in awe, a simple straight photo can be emotionally much more rewarding. This is true whether or not I’m photographing toys.

Now, the question "how far are you going to fake your photos?" lingers in my mind as I am starting work on something new. Does heavy editing make the photos closer to being perfect – or just generic? Is editing killing something in the photos? Is it like in the music business: would you use Autotune to sing better than you actually can?

Wednesday, October 22, 2014


When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us.
Alexander Graham Bell
Approximately one year ago I was headed to Iceland with the fine folks at KEXP radio to cover the Iceland Airwaves music festival. I was excited, I had packed my lego and I knew it was going to be a good trip. In fact, it was an incredible trip, all my expectations where met!

This year I am not going to Airwaves and I am sad. I had three good years as a volunteer but my services were not needed this time. It is hard to watch my friends prepare for another amazing year and no I won't be there to experience it. But when I am honest with myself, I know it would have been hard to pull off another Airwaves this year. Right now, nine days out of my life would be crippling. 

So even though I am sad about not joining in the fun, I have faith that I am on the right track...for me. Music is still a big part of my life (it always will be) and I still find time to volunteer, it's just that now there are other areas in my life that are a bigger priority. 

In the mean time I will have to stop looking backwards as that door closes so I can see the door that has opened up before me. I have to have faith in the future. 

~ xxsjc 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Magical Realism

"Magic realism or magical realism is a genre where magical or unreal elements play a natural part in an otherwise realistic (often mundane) environment. Although it is most commonly used as a literary genre, magic realism also applies to film and the visual arts." ~ Wikipedia
Magical realism is my favorite genre of literature. Think One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami or Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie. All books I have read and loved.

I recently started reading the latest Murakami novel, Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage, and it felt like putting on a my favorite coat. It was a happy comfortable feeling; almost like coming home and naturally it got me thinking.

I understand why in "Steal Like an Artist" the author talks about the importance of side projects. Not only can they give creative inspiration to your work, but they can help you understand what you are doing and why. Connect the dots, so to speak. I am attracted to magical realism across multiple disciplines and it makes sense that I would want to recreate that feeling in my own work. I find it comforting that my artistic insanity is consistent.

In my opinion the Lego mini figure is well suited to this goal of magical realism. For many of us it has an instant connection to childhood memories as well as a place in our present lives. To have a toy that is so imbued with instant emotions, then free it from those boundaries and place it in unexpected location is a powerful tool. I want to help my viewer (and myself) to reclaim that sense of wonder and innocence that we associate with childhood. By placing the mini figure in unusual situations, I hope it will gain an aspect of magical realism that only comes from having a foot in two different worlds at the same time, the past and the present.

It is important to me that my Lego friends inhabit my world, not a world down a rabbit hole or a world created by someone else. I want them to be of my world, just a better, more magical version of my world.

~ xxsjc

What is your favorite book in this genre?

Sunday, October 19, 2014


Awesome !

Every Sunday the Crew gathers together on the roof of The Studio™ and we discuss the week ahead, the one that has gone by, take a dip in the pool, grill some burgers and enjoy each other company.

Today we had a feature guest passing by for some fun and awesome pizza, beer and burgers.

Benny™  wanted to get all the gear out and extend the fun into the bubble pool, which we did.

We took some great snapshots, played with the strobes and had fun.

Among all the questions we ask ourselves here on SiP, we should not forget it is about having fun.

Exploring the awesome unknown.

Having fun.

Todays shoot is not gallery material and will not make it to the wall of an exclusive Stuck In Plastic collector, yet it was great fun with Benny™.

We enjoyed the moment and had some fun when shooting bubbles, regardless if they are considered art or just a snapshot of the moment (and the above pictures goes into my snapshot book).

This is what Stuck In Plastic all about.

From having Fun™ to Art™ collector material sticking high resolution full sized pictures to the wall of corporate board rooms and private bed rooms alike.

In the coming weeks we will take a deeper dive on why we are Stuck In Plastic and what we want to achieve together with you, but whatever road we take it is all about having fun, one way or the other while we take a deep dive into our artistic self.



Shot at location in a Nordic Bubble Pool at an undisclosed location midst alien unidentified underwater objects.  

My original royal post has been delayed since Benny crashed the party.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

The secret doorway

As most of you know I tend to explore the realms of TED and sometimes I feel very much connected with the people on stage and have the urge to share it with you here.

When I heard Mac explain his professional job is to lie to children and instantly continued with a quote of Pablo Picasso, my interest was spiked.

“We all know that Art is not truth. Art is a lie that makes us realize truth at least the truth that is given us to understand. The artist must know the manner whereby to convince others of the truthfulness of his lies.” 

Pablo Picasso

I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did.

I went into the cupboard and looked for the secret door.
I found a long lost brick.

So, go and check under the bed for the green monsters and dinosaurs and check that cupboard for the secret doorway to your fantasy world.

Let us know what you found !

Friday, October 17, 2014

New Metrics Needed

"Do what you love and the money will follow." ~ Marsha Sinetar

I dislike this quote. It simplifies a very complex equation into a convenient sound bite. 

The first problem is the assumption that a creative individual wants money and their passion to be intertwined. It's a nice thought, but money changes everything. Just ask Michelangelo. Do you think the Sistine Chapel would have been painted if Pope Julius II hadn't commissioned it? He was a sculptor, not a painter. But that is what happens when money changes hands. 

Second it presumes that success and money are synonymous. In an age when the arts and crafts are barely supported by the establishment we need to find a measure of success other than money. In the world of Instagram and Flickr where success is seen in terms of likes, followers and comments is this really enough of a metric? I don't know, but I doubt it

I was showing my photography to a new contact the other day and their immediate response was "I hope you're making money off of those!" I know he meant this as a compliment, but I couldn't help being annoyed with a world that equates success with money.

So in the absence of a large benefactor like The Church, Big Inc or a wealthy patron we need to look for another way to measure an artists success (or failure). In a world that does not value photography or photographers with money, we need to develop new metrics; whether they be rooted in social media or preferably the real world.

~ xxsjc

How do you measure the success of your passion? 

I never went into the air thinking I would lose. 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Of Mirrors and Images

I've never been much of a community guy. In the past, I preferred to work alone, especially when it came to something marginal, which photographing toys was to me. At the beginning of my toy photography career in the summer of 2009, I reluctantly joined a couple of Flickr groups because I was curious. I wanted to see how it all worked. Then I joined several more.

Strangers’ comments to my first few uploaded photographs puzzled me, as I didn't really know how to respond. It felt weird – and interesting. I did not go away, however, and gradually the toy photography community in Flickr grew on me. It happened quite fast actually, after I realized the community served as mirror with which I could see myself.

As I post a photo, the response it generates helps me to figure out what I did right and what went wrong. I am blind to most of my photographs; I have no idea of how they work, how people perceive them. I work on a whim. Usually, when I upload something I think is absolute dynamite, I get a friendly reaction, but not the enthusiasm I'd expected. It goes the other way too; images I think are meh at best, not necessarily worth uploading at all, get the most likes. The toy photography community mirror is important to me. I learn from it.

When Shelly asked me to join SiP I hesitated at first, but after some consideration I decided to jump in. Why? I wanted another mirror, a mirror I have not yet experienced: a mirror of a text, without the photo as the obvious lead.

We'll see.

~ Avanaut

This is from my first photosession with Lego. Well, first with uploading in mind.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Misty Mountains

Shelly's post touched me.

" ... One day we will all become dust or random particles. Depending on your beliefs you may return as another life form, you will pass on to another plane of existence or simply stop existing. What ever your beliefs, our time on earth is short and mostly inconsequential ... I am also arrogant enough to want to leave my mark on this earth; sort of like my initials carved into a tree or a painting in a cave..."

Leaving a personal legacy behind and trying to create my personal rock painting is for sure one of my personal drivers.

I really hope some of my pictures will once adorn my great grand children walls and they will inspire them to go places, meet bricks, and remember this great grand father who took pictures and inspired them to travel the world and beyond and connect ...

Taking about places and connecting worlds ... 
This picture was shot at the Oktoberfest amongst 6.3 million bricks who visited the Oktoberfest in 2014. 

6.3 million visitors also brought a lot of hunger and thirst with them which resulted in 112 oxen, 48 calves and 6.4 million liters of beer consumed at the Oktoberfest.

A social gathering of mankind and bricks alike.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014


I've been watching documentaries again, this time it was Cave of Forgotten Dreams. This interesting documentary by Werner Herzog is about the relatively recently discovered Chauvet Cave in southern France that contains some of the oldest human-painted images ever discovered. These rock paintings were created approximately 32,000 years ago. It was a good documentary and considering the subject matter it was actually riveting; I recommend it.

Why do I bring this up now? How is this relevant to our discussions on "Why"? In all our conversations we have never mentioned legacy or more specifically immortality. One day we will all become dust or random particles. Depending on your beliefs you may return as another life form, you will pass on to another plane of existence or simply stop existing. What ever your beliefs, our time on earth is short and mostly inconsequential.

For me the desire to create has many different facets. I am driven by my inner voice to create much the same way my ancestors were driven to create their rock paintings. I want to use my art to connect with other people. This can be as simple as a brief interaction on IG or an in person meeting that has turned into a friendship. I am also arrogant enough to want to leave my mark on this earth; sort of like my initials carved into a tree or a painting in a cave.

As my husband is fond of pointing out, I have met all my current friends through the internet. (Ok, maybe not quite all, I think there are one or two that I actually met in person through some long lost job or my kids school.) But by and large, the majority are people I have collected in my social media journey. They are a large and diverse group and they are all precious to me. This is what drives me.

So I will keep creating, I will keep reaching out to meet new people and I will keep trying to make my mark on this complicated world we live in.

If you ever want to know my answer to the question "Why?" it is all over this blog, it is in everything I write and in every image I create. I want to connect with as many people as possible before I sink back into the dust.

~ xxsjc

If you are curious about the concept of Immortality I highly recommend a book of the same name by Milan Kundera. An excellent read for the artist and non-artist alike.

If dinosaurs died out 65Million years ago and the oldest human fossil is 4Million years old and those cave paintings mentioned above are from 32,000 years ago, no wonder I feel like a short timer. 

Sunday, October 12, 2014

170 degrees

This is post 170 since our very first post in February of this year.

The first post featuring Shelly landing on unexplored shores in Nordic countries.
A post quickly followed by our second post where Shelly explained we are an art collective, continued with a rollercoaster of other posts.
An average of 20 posts a month.

A journey of posts exploring our own artistic selves, looking for influences and the reasons why we shoot what we shoot and are what we are.

Stuckinplastic is more than just a hashtag on Instagram or the random ramblings from Shelly and Me2. Stuckinplastic is looking to define an art collective of like minded photographers, digital illustrators, story tellers and visual artists alike who want to take their work beyond the instant gratification of likes on IG, Flickr, FB or any of the social media we all crave once in a while and share a common goal, passion and understanding.

We want to take our plastic work into the printed walls of galleries, board and bedrooms alike and connect with our audience.

Define our bricked photography as the soup cans of our age.

Stuck In Plastic is not an easy or fast road, it is not an instant movement of the next great picture or awesome effect that blasts us all away like a genie in a bottle of soda.

It is not about the gear, the bricks or the tricks of the trade.
It is about all of that and yet it is soo much more.
It is about finding our artistic selves and meeting new people.
Sometimes we ask too much questions or dive too deep.

It is a long and windy road and we are just at the beginning of this great journey.

A journey you are all part of.

From being a distant reader who enjoys our posts, to some of you walking along and helping define the soup cans with us here on IG and G+ or giving us guidance by walking ahead and being an inspiration for all of us as a distant legend.

We are extremely proud to welcome our third member of the inner circle of the order of the soup cans here at Stuck In Plastic.

A member who doesn't need any long and windy introductions.

Welcome Avanaut.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Behind the Scenes

Challenging yourself is a continuing theme on this blog. Ok, maybe it is just my thing. (Although I do seem to remember +Me2 set himself a challenge earlier this year to post daily to the blog.)

Earlier this summer I challenged myself with a rather large project and set Christmas as the deadline. Time (and good weather) is running out and I need to buckle down and get the rest of my photos shot if I am going to make this lofty goal.

Yesterday was one of those wonderful days where I finally nailed a pivotal photo I have been chasing all summer.  My earlier frustrations have been a combination of poor planning and lousy locations. But yesterday the weather was good, the kids were gone and I had no good excuses left to avoid this shot. 

I have learned that pre planning is everything. I have had enough experience with all that has gone wrong that I felt I was ready for success. By building the set before hand all I had to do was drop it into the location and shoot away. This way, all I had to concentrate on was lighting and camera angles, not the subjects floating away. 

I thought I would give you a behind the scenes glimpse into what that photographic journey has looked like. Now I have to get going on the rest of the photos...

~ xxsjc

Do you ever have an image in your head that you've struggled to capture?

Lower Snoqualmie Falls, June 2014

Lake Washington, August 2014

Puget Sound, September 2014

Magnuson Park, October 2014

Wednesday, October 8, 2014


Why do I take photographs of toys?

For me, it's pretty simple. There is a very brief and special moment that sometimes happens in my toy photography. If I've done everything correctly, I obtain realism. At least, enough realism to make a viewer pause for a second, look a little closer and ask "how'd he do that?"

I am trying to show dinosaurs in a realistic way. That's pretty much the only thing I am consistently trying to achieve with my artwork. That is my goal and what I view as most important over everything else. That is my own measure of a successful photograph.

As I see it, there are 6 key components of toy photography to achieve a strong level of realism. They are; perspective, composition, lighting, depth-of-field, contrast and colors. To strike a strong balance between them is difficult to do and rewarding to achieve. I attempt 'realism' quite often and feel successful at it frequently enough to keep enjoying the process.

I share my photos on instagram (@dinoczars) and have a number of enthusiastic followers there. I also try to sell prints of my best shots from time to time in art shows and on my easy store ( But both the fans on IG and the sales aren't my biggest motivators, I was shooting dinos before I was on IG and if the app crashed tomorrow, I would still be shooting dinos. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate the positive reactions I get from people, and that certainly is a motivator, but ultimately, even if they all stopped paying attention to what I do, I'd still be doing it. Because I love dinosaurs and being able to recreate them in a believable way is a joy for me.

Why do I take photographs of toys?

I guess it boils down to this: I saw Jurassic Park at a very impressionable age and have been trying to bring dinosaurs back to life, in my own way, ever since.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014


While Shelly is exploring the mystery fields of Big Inc. and wonders if the neocortex powers of the why are not overestimated and we all just need a daily dose of sugar to keep us motivated, I took a break from all these big questions of life and took a walk in the city.

A city walk I have to thank @legojacker for.
He reminded me on his IG feed of his participation downunder in the Melbourne InstaWalk. A walk to celebrate the 4th anniversary of Instagram (you can find the first pictures that started it all 4 years ago from the founders of IG).

I myself joined IG a year later (3 years ago !!!) and it has taken me on a photographic journey that is just starting.

A journey in the fields of digital lightroom and molded plastic.
A roller coaster from digital selfies (my very first post was a selfie on the ski slopes, taken with an iPhone 3) to epic stories of combined full frame pictures that took just a tad longer than a snapshot.

A voyage across galaxies, meeting new friends in the digital world to making a city walk in Stockholm just last weekend.

From smaller art galleries, long discussions on the Parisian boulevards and the peer recognition in the art scene in the fifties (or was it eighties) to IG, Flickr or 500px anno today.

The scene is shifting, the digital platforms are driving us in our journeys and explorations, yet there is nothing new under the sun.

We still want to connect, meet people, share our creative work and see that smile in the eyes when your image hits home and makes a connection.

And this is what Stuck In Plastic is all about.

Building plastic bridges between dinosaurs and young puppies alike.

Building bridges between a small and instant world full of plastic living in your mobile; taking the creativity to the streets of our cities. Exposing those photos on real walls, in a big format, for all of us to enjoy and connect.

Connecting our worlds, one brick at a time.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Grateful to Big Inc.

I won't deny it has been a heady week and its time to come crashing back down to earth. But before I get mired down in the day to day of my life I want to take a moment to tell you all how grateful I am for the last week.

The week started with one of those days of a life time on my family road trip, many birthday wishes from my IG family and ended with another fun BrickCon with my photo's been an amazing week by any measure.

Nestled in this already awesome week was lunch with Julie Broburg a Lego representative from the Mothership. Julie's job (as I understand it) is to act as a liaison to the AFOL community in all it's forms, including us legographers. I find it amazing that there is a corporation out there that is interested in what their fans are doing and are willing to support, nurture and learn from that community. I know I can be very wary of Big Inc., but it is hard to disparage a company that values it's fans as much as Lego does.

So thank you Julie for all you do for all the AFOL's out there. If you get a chance to meet Julie in her travels make sure you go up and say: "Hi" and be sure to introduce yourself as a legographer.

Now I have one more thing to be grateful for: I am grateful to be photographing a great product and being a part of the Lego family in my own small way.

~ xxsjc

Fairy Godmother Julie

ps. I am pretty sure +Me2 had other ideas planned for todays post, but since he got caught up at his own Big Inc, you got me instead. We will pick up with our "Why" series later this week. Cheers!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Putting Social Back Into Social Media

#wwim10stockholm is the hashtag of choice amongst these fine folks behind me2

Today was the 10th World Wide InstaMeet (try #wwim10 out on Instagram)  with folks around the globe taking their cameras and phones alike out for a group walk and meeting other IG people in real live.  

I have always thought about joining a photowalk like these, but never took the deep dive into the unknown (I am most probably not the most social brick around).

Meeting strangers in real live. 

Shaking hands and exchanging lenses. 

A very nice experience I will for sure explore again.
After all, we are a social species. 

A species designed to connect and exchange creativity ...

Why are these photographers walking in our picture - 50mm lens from another IG'r

People ?!?

Special thanks to:

@iggersstockholm for inviting us to the party, we for sure want to join again ... 
@dasha for being such a great host and patiently herd the troops along ...
@xxsjc for pointing out the obvious ...

Friday, October 3, 2014

Why? vs Motivation

"Why?"seems to be the question of the day. We have been asking it here on the blog and have been blessed by a handful of guest posts that answer that question from various view points. I was recently reading Beautiful Lego by Mike Doyle and it is filled with artist essays that directly tackle the question of "Why?" from a Lego builders point of view.

In all the answers I have been reading there are plenty of similarities: emotional connection with the audience, expression of an idea, new ways to interact with a beloved childhood toy and the element of surprise at seeing a familiar toy in a new way. But is "Why?" even the right question to be asking?

Sure it is, if you are marketing to a particular audience; it would be important to know what drives your audience so you can sell more product. But if you are an artist, the bigger and far more important question seems to me to be: "How do you stay motivated?"

How does the creative individual stay motivated to get up everyday and strive to make something new. How does an artist keep creating day after day in relative anonyminity. No matter what your creative tools may be (a camera, lego bricks or your words), how do you keep going day after day pursuing an activity that will bring you only intangible rewards?

Of all the responses we have had so far to the question "Why?" I think that Legojacker was the closest to addressing the more important question: How do you stay motivated?

~ xxsjc

So what DOES it take to stay motivated? 

Wednesday, October 1, 2014


The Poetry of the Streets

There is 
a thrill to walking 
the empty city
at dawn,
plastic hidden,
feeling the cold
biting your neck
racing the morning light
as it creeps over the tops 
of the buildings.
There is a quiet 
that follows
as you slip into
dirty laneways 
dripping with 
brightly coloured 
street art,
and walls 
in the scrawl
of invisible souls. 
Choose a spot.
Choose a figure.
At first
you may not see
the poetry 
of the streets 
alive with toys, 
but then it comes, 
tiny drifting souls
echoing desperate 
cries and laughter
among the everyday debris. 
back alley visits
unfeeling plastic
by the gram
to feel 
a shared humanity
in a world 
turning faceless
by the second.

~ Legojacker