Posts Tagged ‘photographers’

Fictitious Dishes: An Album of Literature’s Most Memorable Meals, by Dinah Fried, is a book of fifty photographs of meals from celebrated literature — ranging from The Secret Garden to Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.

Fictitious Dishes

Dinah Fried began Fictitious Dishes as a series of five photographs when she was a student at Rhode Island School of Design. Now it’s a book that serves up a delectable assortment of photographic interpretations of culinary moments from contemporary and classic literature. Showcasing famous meals including the madcap tea party from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, the watery gruel from Oliver Twist, the lavish chicken breakfast from To Kill a Mockingbird, the stomach-turning avocado-and-crabmeat salad from The Bell Jar, and the seductive cupcakes from The Corrections, this unique volume pairs each place setting with the text from the book that inspired its creation. Interesting food facts and entertaining anecdotes about the authors, their work, and their culinary predilections complete this charming book, which is sure to whet the appetites of lovers of great literature and delicious dishes. Source:

FictitiousDishes_aliceinwonderlandAlice’s Adventures in Wonderland

FictitiousDishes_olivertwistOliver Twist

FictitiousDishes_thebelljarThe Bell Jar

FictitiousDishes_thecatcherintheryeThe Catcher in the Rye

FictitiousDishes_ontheroadOn the Road


FictitiousDishes_tokillamockingbirdTo Kill a Mockingbird

FictitiousDishes_thegirlwiththedragontattooThe Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

FictitiousDishes_swannswaySwann’s Way

FictitiousDishes_mobydickMoby-Dick; or The Whale

I’m a big fan of the movie “The Silence of the Lambs”, directed by Jonathan Demme in 1991. Other day I was browsing on Google about subliminal messages in movie posters and I found among some of them, “The Silence of the Lambs” poster. I have the DVD of the movie and I’m tired to see the cover and I never realized what was hidden behind that skull painted on the back of the moth.

See “The Silence of the Lambs” poster (right click on the image to enlarge in another window):

subliminar-silence“The Silence of the Lambs” high-res poster – 1600×2377.

Now, see closer and closer, and what you see is not a skull on the backside of the moth covering Jodie Foster‘s mouth but is actually a photo of seven naked women where the position of their bodies looks as a skull.

That was a tribute to “In Voluptas Mors”, the famous photo conceived of by Salvador Dalí and shot by Philippe Halsman in 1951.


I also knew the picture but I had never associated one thing to another. I decided to do some research about the photo. The draft of this post was saved for months, and finally I could finish it.

Halsman, Dalí and In Voluptas Mors

Philippe_HalsmanPhilippe Halsman was bon on 2 May 1906, in Riga, Latvia, and was a Latvian-born American famous portrait photographer who was born to a Jewish family of Morduch (Max) Halsman, a dentist, and Ita Grintuch, a grammar school principal, in Riga, Halsman studied electrical engineering in Dresden. In September 1928, Halsman went on a hiking tour in the Austrian Alps with his father, Morduch. During this tour, Morduch died from severe head injuries. The circumstances were never completely clarified and Halsman was sentenced to 4 years imprisonment for patricide. The case provoked anti-Jewish propaganda and thus gained international publicity, and Albert Einstein and Thomas Mann wrote in support of Halsman. Finally by 1931 Halsman was released under the conditions that he leave Austria for good, never to return.

Philippe Halsman and Salvador Dalí lived and worked in Paris in the 1930s when surrealism flourished but they first met in New York in 1941, when both were new émigrés. They had arrived within months of each other – Dali in August 1940, and Halsman three months later. During the previous ten years, their paths must have criss-crossed frequently in the narrow streets of Montparnasse, where Halsman had a studio at 22 Rue Delambre, and Dali was part of the surrealist enclave at 54 Rue du Chateau. In 1936, Halsman exhibited photographs at the Galerie de la Pleiade, where surrealist photographer Man Ray also showed his work. But until 1941, Halsman and Dalí had never met.

Within a year of his arrival in New York, Halsman had re-established himself. His iconic portrait of model Constance Ford silhouetted against an American flag had been featured in a major Elizabeth Arden advertising campaign. And in October, Halsman was sent by the Black Star Agency to photograph the outsize costumes created for the Ballets Russes production of “Labyrinth” at the Metropolitan Opera House — with music by Franz Schubert, choreography by Leonid Massine, and scenery and costumes by Salvador Dalí.


Lacking a large studio, Halsman took the company’s prima ballerina, Tamara Toumanova, and another dancer dressed as a giant white rooster, to a nearby rooftop. When Halsman photographed bird and ballerina against the soaring towers of Rockefeller Center, he produced a photograph that evoked one of Dali’s own sharply-focused, surreal works of art. The photo became LIFE’s “Picture of the Week,” the artists became inspired friends, and their creative rapport would last for the next 37 years.


Several weeks later they collaborated again; this time they produced a collaged photograph of Dalí lying naked in the embryo pose within an enlarged photo of an egg. The image, entitled “Pre-Natal Memory,” was published the following year in Dalí’s autobiography, “The Secret Life of Salvador Dalí.”


The 1948 work “Dalí Atomicus” explores the idea of suspension, depicting three cats flying, a bucket of thrown water, and Dalí in mid air. The title of the photograph is a reference to Dalí’s work “Leda Atomica” which can be seen in the right of the photograph behind the two cats. Halsman reported that it took 28 attempts before a satisfactory result was achieved. Halsman and Dalí eventually released a compendium of their collaborations in the 1954 book “Dalí’s Mustache”, which features 36 different views of the artist’s distinctive mustache.


To make “In Voluptas Mors”, Halsman took three hours to arrange the seven models according to a sketch by Dalí. Hours of direction, contortion and prodding seems to have eliminated any eroticism. In the behind-the-scene photos below, the models look exhausted and bored. The title, “In Voluptas Mors”, roughly translates to “the voluptuous death”. In Roman mythology, Voluptas was the goddess of pleasure.











In the decades ahead, Halsman and Dalí would “play” together at least once a year — “an elating game”, Halsman wrote in 1972, “creating images that did not exist, except in our imaginations. Whenever I needed a striking protagonist for one of my wild ideas, Dalí would graciously oblige. Whenever Dali thought of a photograph so strange that it seemed impossible to produce, I tried to find a solution.”

Usually they conspired in Halsman’s large, strobe-equipped studio at 33 West 67th Street, around the corner from St. Nicholas Arena in Manhattan. Other “sittings” took place at Dalí’s home in Cadaques, Los Angeles, and at the St. Regis Hotel, where Dali invariably stayed when he was in New York. The death of Philippe Halsman on June 25, 1979, in New York, put and end to this intense, prolific, 37-year collaboration unique in the history of 20th Century art. Dalí died on January 23, 1989, at 84, in Catalonia, Spain.

And to finish, an additional information: the moth depicted in “The Silence of the Lambs” is real. The death’s-head hawkmoth is a real moth found primarily in Europe, and it appears to have a human skull on its back.


Artist and photographer Michael Paul Smith has spent hours upon hours photographing one special town that he holds very dear to his heart. There is something that always drew him to it, and the images he created are simple, but stunning. They glow with small-town charm and innocence, reminiscent of days and decades past…

Welcome to Elgin Park!

visitepThinking where to spend vacations next summer? How about a quiet country town, wooded, no traffic, where people know each other by the name and where everything breathes the memories of an era that will never return? Yes, Elgin Park is the ideal city. Is quaint and beautiful:






It’s like each picture tells a story of how life used to be in the United States.






There’s not much going on in these pictures, but it’s obvious that this town is nothing but charm.







To Michael Paul Smith, this is what quintessential America looked like when he was a kid. But Elgin Park it’s not real… It doesn’t exists, except in the mind of photographer and artist Michael Paul Smith. For over 25 years, he has been creating this imaginary world called “Elgin Park”, filled with scaled models of old cars. They’re 1/24th the size to be exact. He chooses appropriate surroundings for these models, and then uses his camera to capture the most realistic shot possible. The kind of shot that you have no idea is within a tiny world. Here’s the best part: he does it all with a $200 point and shoot camera.



His photos tell a story that takes you back to that time and place. “What started out as an exercise in model building and photography, ended up as a dream-like reconstruction of the town I grew up in. It’s not an exact recreation, but it does capture the mood of my memories”, Michael says. The photos that recreate this imaginary town of “Elgin Park” are believable not only because the backgrounds, lighting and subject are expertly integrated, but also because of the extensive and thoroughly researched details in each scene.

Michael sets his models up on a card table and populates it with cars from his extensive collection of Danbury Mint and Franklin Mint die cast autos and trucks. The buildings are constructed of resin-coated paper, styrene plastic and basswood, plus numerous found objects. No Photoshop was used in these images; they’re all composed in the camera. He places the scene near the street or in a parking lot and lines up the camera angle and horizon to perfectly match that of the model, getting the perspective just right. Michael also does night scenes, which are usually photographed inside his small apartment using a very simple lighting setup. He is also able to duplicate the moods of different weather conditions, seasons and times of day with streets wet from rain or curbs drifted with snow made from carefully applied baking soda.



























If you’d like to see more pictures of this perfect American town, visit the Elgin Park website or visit Michael’s page on Flickr. To learn more about Michael’s work, please visit the Craftsmanship Museum website for a full writeup on his talents and process.


A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…

There was a couple named

Candace and Paolo.

One day, they decided to take

their love for Star Wars

and for each other to a

whole new level…





Photos by Shannon Lee. For more photos, please visit:

The Untouchables – A shock photography project for the protection of children

“Los Intocables“, or The Untouchables, is a shock photography project created by the Cuban photographer Erik Ravelo and the Brazilian artistic director Daniel Ferreira, to raise awareness of child protection, and about the various attacks against children through the world: sexual abuse, shootings in American schools, sex tourism, war or nuclear disaster or even obesity and fast food and black market organ trade.

The children are depicted in a vulnerable pose, pinned up against the backs of adults in a pose reminiscent of the crucifixion. The subheading to this provocative series is: “The Right to Childhood Should be Protected”. Ravelo attempts to speak for those who cannot properly articulate their pain. The sick, twisted games that adults play can come at a cost to future generations and Ravelo’s series gives a voice to those children who get caught in the crossfire.  Source:

Updated on June 12, 2014: The original making of video from The Untouchables was removel from YouTube and the artist page was banned from Facebook. But I found one short video on this channel.