If you’ve already got your hands on the Xperia 10 Plus, you’ll know its 12MP + 8MP dual camera system and its ability to capture imagery in the 21:9 aspect ratio make it a great device for taking creative photography.
We’ve shown you how to create amazing food photography using the Xperia 10 Plus, how to snap the great outdoors using the smartphone’s 2x optical zoom feature, as well as how to take Instagram-worthy city-break shots.
While the Xperia 10 Plus is perfect for capturing the spontaneous moments that happen all around you, it’s also more than capable when it comes to shots that require craft, set-up and careful planning. Here, we’ve used the device to breathe life into toy figurines, using forced perspectives to make them seem larger, adding emotional depth to the shots.
If you have an afternoon to yourself, you needn’t scroll through your smartphone… use it to get creative instead! Here are our ‘top tips’ for shooting toys and small figures using your Xperia 10 Plus.
It’s all a matter of perspective
If possible, you’ll need to get down to the same level as the figures, even lying down on the ground if you need to. It’s probably a good idea to wear something that you don’t mind getting a bit dirty.
Waterproofs can be useful, especially when you are shooting in streams. If it isn’t possible to get down that low, then you can set the shot higher up at eye level; on a tree branch or wall, for example.
Creating another world
You can use old tree stumps and mossy areas outdoors as a ready-made set, creating an instant scenario for your figures. A puddle could become a lake, and a stream could become a river for your character to wander. A rock or a pile of stones could be a resting place or lookout for your miniature traveller.
Imagine that they are doing something, like running or walking, or looking as if they’ve just heard something or seen someone, and try to pose them that way instead of just propping them up.
If you can think of a back story for your figures it will help them to come alive. Think of them out on their adventures, or the relationships between them. Focus on their eyes, and imagine that you are the same size as them. This will give the impression that they are interacting with you as though you are right there in the scene with them.
Setting the scene
Next, you’ll need to think about the background. Other items in the shot (such as leaves, stray branches, and twigs) may disrupt the scale. You can edit your surroundings by taking these out of the shot. If this isn’t possible, shoot in Bokeh mode to blur out the distracting details and help the subject to ‘pop’ out of the shot. The Bokeh feature of the Xperia 10 Plus helps to separate the subject from the background, taking the toy out of the ‘real’ world and into their own world.
Let there be light
Make use of the different kinds of natural light outdoors. If you shoot during the ‘golden hour’ (just after dawn or just before sunset) you can make the most of the softer, warmer colours it brings. A cloudy day is often ideal as the clouds diffuse the light and give you soft, even lighting across the scene.
If you end up shooting on a bright, sunny day, try and find some shade, as the bright midday sun can create harsh shadows and blown-out highlights. Nevertheless, hard light streaming through trees on a bright day can also serve to highlight the figure within the scene, creating a dramatic effect.
Use the Xperia 10 Plus to its full potential
The Xperia 10 Plus’s 6.5” 21:9 Wide display offers the perfect canvas for creative photography, as you can see everything you’ve set up in the image right there on the screen. You can even check and adjust your still life with one hand while altering the position of the phone with the other.
What’s more, if you’ve got a tricky scenario where you can’t get the angle you require, the 2x optical zoom feature enables you to get closer to your subject. What’s more, shooting in the 21:9 ratio can make your shots look beautifully cinematic.
Finally, don’t be afraid to shoot in manual mode; you will see the effects of your adjustments right there on the screen. Play around with the shutter speed and ISO until you get the combination of effects just right, and adjust the white balance to alter the colour temperature and, in turn, change the overall ‘feel’ of the shot.
We’d love to see you recreate some forced perspective shots on your Xperia! Make sure you tag #Xperia so we can see your creations.