Culture / Art Republik

Japanese Instagram Photographer HotKenobi is turning Toys into Real Life Action Heroes

The Osaka-based HotKenobi uses a combination of perspective photography and photo editing skills to tell a compelling, humorous story with plastic toy figurines.

Mar 01, 2018 | By Jonathan Ho

Japanese Photographer HotKenobi turns Toys into Superheroes

Japanese Photographer HotKenobi turns Toys into Superheroes

Japanese Instagram Photographer HotKenobi is making a name for himself with his fantastic portraits of toy superheroes stylised and shot as if they were real life action heroes. The Osaka-based HotKenobi uses a combination of perspective photography and photo editing skills to tell a compelling, humorous story with plastic toy figurines and the Instagrammer’s skills makes the toys look like they’re very much alive and kicking.

Japanese Instagram Photographer HotKenobi is turning Toys into Real Life Action Heroes

Playful, fun scenes with hilarious narratives and eye-popping visuals using action figures of our favorite heroes are shot as a work of passion (i.e. non-commercial) and published by HotKenobi on his instagram account.

HotKenobi often uses toys like Superman, Batman, Captain America and even Black Panther, a recent Hollywood hit to create his uplighting and humourous compositions often including everyday objects like beer cans, and even plays on perspective with human subjects; e.g. a foot hovering dangerously over Ant-man.

The action figure photographer is truly a geek of the highest level, bearing no favourite publishers which often plague geekdom, he uses toys from Marvel, DC, and Star Wars universes. At publishing time, HotKenobi has over 113k followers on instagram.

HotKenobi’s artistic portrayals of toy action figures are similar to the work of Sgt. Matthew Callahan, a visual storyteller (Galactic_warfighters on instagram) whose striking images with Star Wars stormtrooper figures convey the unique perspective of a photographer who is also a war correspondent and former infantryman. Callahan studied photography while recovering at a Wounded Warrior detachment in Hawaii, and his unique toy photography talents came to popular consciousness in 2016. HotKenobi’s action figure photography works were noticed in 2017.

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