Christophe Kiciak is an amateur photographer based in France. We say ‘amateur’ but as demonstrated here, his work is clearly anything but! The images here have, surprisingly, involved little use of Photoshop, which was used only in post-production. Inventive, creative and original, Christophe’s photography is fun and demands a closer look.
Christophe says, “I had to shoot this on a rainy evening, so that the snail would come out of his shell… It took a few minutes after putting him on the skateboard, but then he wasn’t shy at all!”
Christophe used a large softbox from above/behind, and a diffused speedlight from front/right. The skateboard was hanging on fishing lines, which were cloned out in post-production.
Christophe says, “First, I made some quick tries at home, just to get a rough idea of the framing and angle that I wanted. Then my wife and I traveled to the beach. I located a particularly spot for this shot using ‘The Photographer’s Ephemeris’ – it is a handy little piece of software based on Google Maps that gives you the position of the sun and the moon for any day of the year. It really helped me to plan the lighting – for example, I knew that a reflector would be necessary to compensate for the high harsh sun.
“Once there, we did some test shots without digging in the sand, and after a few tries we started using our shovels! At this point, walkers’ faces became funny. But that was nothing compared to when I undressed myself, and got down in the hole with the cap and glasses My wife then kindly buried me and we shot many photos in order to be able to select the one with the most convincing position.”
“While the idea was mine, a huge part of the work was done by my wife. She had a day off, and spent it entirely in the basements of our house, designing the horse, building the wooden skeleton, searching for adequate parts and gluing them together. I would have never reached such a result by myself. Then in the evening, we brought it to the studio upstairs and created the pile of junk from where the horse emerges.”
– A main softbox from the upper/right
– A fill-light softbox from the lower/right
– Another fill-light softbox from the front/left + silver reflector
– A snooted backlight on a black backdrop
The Bear Witch Project
It’s Not Fun To Be Magneto’s Son
Surprisingly, this image is not a composite!
The Oak Chapel
“This Oak Tree is located in France, in a Normandie’s town called Allouville-Bellefosse. It is one of the oldest trees in the country at around 1200 years old. Its hollow trunk hosts two chapels, which were built there in 1669 – Notre Dame de la Paix (‘Our Lady of Peace’) and the Chambre de l’Ermite (‘Hermit’s room’). A spiral staircase around the trunk provides access to the chapels.
“As for the photo itself, I wanted to show that it actually is in a city, hence this angle showing the right wall and houses. The shot was made with a tilt-shift lens, which is supposedly used to *correct* parallelism problems… but I actually had fun using it the other way: I liked the special atmosphere it gave to the location. It is quite a fun piece of gear!”
“The execution of this image was quite interesting to achieve. To summarize it, my wife had to do a fast 180 degrees rotation (so that the dress would lift up), while holding the coffee and the doughnut, and ending the gesture at the right place. This was done in a corridor where I was able to stand from above, and the walls were quite near on the sides. Positioning needed to be precise. The coffee cup was glued to avoid it flying away (but the coffee is real), and we built a structure under the dress to help it lift up.”
A Boring Book
View more of Christophe’s work on DeviantArt.