Mirror, Mirror, and Other Household Objects - by Vin
Part 1 (April 2006)
Good Morning Divas! And Divos!
First of all, I would like to Thank Dee/NJ and the DD Mods for inviting me to share some of my little fun tricks and ideas with you today! Dee is my inspiration as are Audrey and many of the other members...getting ideas for dioramas/settings and mini-scenes is not always easy and I really have to put myself in 'that frame of mind' in order to see things that may have dual uses or use in a 'diorama'!
Today, I am presenting my love of the use of mirrors and reflective objects and how to use them to make the most of your photos - as far as depth and shimmer. Its always nice to see the back of your dolls as well as the front...multiple images in your planes of sight give your photos depth and interest and a few reflective objects be it a mirror or a silver candle stick will bring light to your photos and diorama scenes...
Here is hoping we have fun and learn even a few tidbits today from one another! Remember to post an inspiration or idea that may be used in conjunction with these ideas... everyone's opinion is valuable and, like Dee, I welcome ideas and feedback where/whenever possible! Let's have fun!!!
Mirrors are a great use to any diorama...they add depth and reflective light. At left, I 'layer' 3 very different mirrors!
A very moody light set up with an 11 in. tall wall mirror on an easel, and my model is a Silkstone Mannequin:
Vero poses next to a collectible plastic base about 3.5 inches tall and a mirror top...crystal accents are just swarovski crystal figures to add light and interest!
First - use your knowledge you know about light in everyday life and apply it to your dioramas...
Mirrors open up a room (sometimes make a room seem larger if it is small) and bring light and depth as well.
Now if we apply that same thought process to our dolls/photos - the same holds true. The larger the mirror - the more light will be reflected and the more depth you will have in a setting. The smaller the mirror - the more it becomes an accent piece to your settings and photos.
For example: My favorite mirror is a very inexpensive Gothic Revival shape I picked up at Christmas Tree Shops for around $15. The same can be purchased at a Marshalls, TJ Maxx or a Home Goods! I have a Plexiglass rectangler 'block' that is/was a display cover for a model car - this serves as my base or 'floor'. I can cover it with 'rugs' made from fake fur / pile swatches picked up at Walmart for under 2.00, or drape with cloth or a sheer TABLE RUNNER (I pick up them up at Home Goods for less than 12.00...the uses are incredible)! I picked up the gold sheer-textured one you see in many of my pix for under 10.00!
A candle stick with a mirror top. Candle stick found at Joannes/mirror at Target for 1.99!
Same here...Base on sale at JoAnnes for less than 2.00! The mirror was a collectible mirror for 2.49 and I use super glue to adhere!
This more modern 'silver' candlestick base is a pillar candle holder for 6.00 at Target. The top was also purchased at Target for 1.99. I used double sided tape just in case I wanted to 'switch out' the tops!
The screen you see in some photos is from the Boyds Bears collection. A four sided screen for 9.99!!! Loads of uses and you can paint it or add decorative papers to the insets to give a different look! Just measure and cut the rectangles and pop in snug!
Here is Vanessa sitting comfortably in her setting. My favorite mirror in the back becomes a 'window' with fabri draped along each side. The candle holder and mirror become a side table!
Here Vanessa waves to guests arriving thru her 'window'!
OK...Let's continue with some more pix of the girls by the SAME exact mirror. I use an OTT Lite for my lighting. I 'perch' my OTT Lite alongside my little scenes and can raise the arm or lower it depending on how much light I want to use/reflect ... you can use a sturdy box or something about 6 inches tall to get 'overhead' light while taking your pix...like I said - the light arm is adjustable and is a great source of 'natural light' even when its dark out and you don't want to use flash. All my photos are 'flash free'! lol
Silkie poses near the same mirror base with a slight reflection - again...this adds depth/dimension to your photos. Vero against the same mirror, sans the drapery to give a more contemporary look.
Vanessa poses against the same mirror below...You can see the added architectural details add interest than just having a SOLID pane of mirror against your backdrop. If you do not have this type of mirror or have not had the chance to purchase one - simply use draped fabric to break up an 'expansive' background mirror!
Focusing on the image in the mirror and 'hazing' the image/object in the foreground gives the photo a cool and moody feel. Utilizing objects such as the FF mannequins is a nice point of interest without 'cluttering up' the photo!
Seeing Vanessa's face in the mirror, less in the front/foreground is another interesting point of view:
Here the light is played with and checked often to achieve a more reflective look...pay attention NOT to get your hands or background objects that would distract from your photos in the shot!
More normal light...tilting the camera for a bit more interest... Another close up... as you can see...I did not angle my shot enough and my hand is the mirror!
A few more, this time the mannequin adds a definite point of interest and extra color.
For more tips about using household objects in Room Settings, go to PART 2 of this discussion!