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  • Truman Phinney

Capturing Fantasy In a Cosplay Photoshoot


I recently got the opportunity to take photos for local Denver artist, Hannah Bish, otherwise known As Deep Space Violet. In this series of photos we captured her fantastical fairy princess attire. This was going to be my first time doing a cosplay photoshoot and going into it I was questioning how I would transition from my typical approach towards fashion. While I wanted to maintain my style I wanted to make sure that they carried an exaggerated magical feeling too truly cement it outside of reality.


To create my set I used a pink backdrop with a relatively thin paper layer and then set up an LED light behind it to create a subtle yet otherworldy glow through the paper. On the left side of me I had my color changing LED light bar and on the right I had a Elinchrom light triggered by my

mounted flash. This cascade lighting interacted with the subject and props in a way that added beautiful glow as well as a lighting drag adding more color and texture in the background. I also came to the this shoot with a few different kaleidoscope glass pieces that I would use to cause more interesting lighting patterns and emphasize spectral feelings.

While a lot of this shoot did stick with a more bright and and ethereal look I also wanted to bring in darker and grungier tones as well to make it more aesthetically adjacent to Medieval looks. These really became some of my favorite shots with the green tones subtly highlighting her with dark shadow peeking from behind.


In addition to this I also captured some extremely abstract photos. I made an effort to get all of these different styles throughout my shoot because once I was finished I didn't want to be left with just images that looked similar. I wanted to have an entire cohesive universe to really show the bounds of how far the boundaries of "fantasy" lay.





In the end I came out with a vast collection of images that fully transports one to another world. I continued to push this project further by turning some of the images into cinema graphs through the use video synthesizing. Checkout those and some more work here. Going into the future as I encounter more similar shoots bringing an emphasis to the magic and enchantment of these moments.

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