Amiibo Figures and Video Game Object Photography


Years ago, I wrote a piece about my Sheik Amiibo. As part of that post, I hastily took a picture of Sheik and Zelda standing together. Not thinking much about the artistic merits of the shot itself, they were placed on top of a fighstick with a picture of Spider-Man and I in the background.

Years later, while mining my archives for content to post on the In Third Person Instagram account, I found that picture. I showed it to my wife and asked her, “Hey, what if I post this picture with the caption, ‘Two sides to every story’?”. She replied, “Can you bring those Amiibos to me?”

Unlike me, Steff has a background in photography. She has a much better eye for finding the right angles, setting up the right shots, and using tools to tweak her pictures just right. In our everyday lives, when we take pictures of the same things, the results are night and day.

As I retrieved the Amiibo figures from the shelf in the basement, she went upstairs and grabbed a number of pieces to set the scene. Placing the books and Amiibo figures just so, she then asked me to hold this white piece of paper behind them. What came out of that moment was a killer photo that elevated the idea far beyond where I could have taken it alone.

Since then, she’s been integral to bringing these ideas to life. I’ll come up with ideas or pairings and she’ll set the stage and take the best photos. During these sessions, our living room is completely re-arranged and filled with toys. Again and again, she knocks these pictures out of the park. Here are a few of my favourites so far and the stories behind them.

In this Star Fox themed shot, I wanted to showcase the Arwing figure that comes with Starlink: Battle for Atlas. We happen to have a space-themed playmat that my sister-in-law made me for use with the Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game. My original vision was just to have the Arwing in the forefront, but Steff evolved the shot into something even better. By using the Fox McCloud figure in the forefront and using bokeh on the Arwing in the back, I saw it as him thinking about flying in space.

Ryu from Street Fighter takes centre stage in this one. My thought process had only gone as far as to take a picture of Ryu standing on the fightstick, but she took it to another level by using the face of the fightstick as the backdrop.

This time, Ryu is in a grudge match against Akuma. Using the fighstick as the battleground, I had the idea of projecting the intro to Super Street Fighter II on our TV and using that as a background. Love this picture to bits!

Going forward, we’re trying to push the envelope even farther. We made a trip to a crafts store a bought a number of pieces to better set the stage for these toys. Some of the pieces include a sheet of model grass, a bristol board sheet of a night sky, a kit of moss and other shrubs, and a number of other backdrops. Not ready to post the next batch of photos just yet, but I’ll drop this tease as an indication of where we want to go.

Besides creating some really awesome photos, being able to get creative with my wife in this manner has been incredibly rewarding. Our creative interests are pretty disparate, so this is an exciting middle ground. Will continue to work with her on these pictures and share her magic touch with the world!


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