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Michael Paul Smith: One of the Many Pleasant Streets in Elgin Park

Work / Photography

Photography: Michael Paul Smith creates perspective bending retro scenes

So you know when you start to see a project popping up all over the place and you’re all like “Yeah is it that good?” and then you actually investigate and your jaw drops and you lose your sh*t because it’s not just good, it’s BRILLIANT? You know that? Well that exactly sums up my past couple of days since first getting wind of the genius that is Michael Paul Smith. The American model-maker and photographer builds these 1/24 scale replicas of scenes which he then photographs against natural backdrops to create the most perspective-bending images imaginable.

You’d be forgiven for thinking the devil is in the details on a project like this, but that would be only half right. While the process of building the scenes is meticulous, Michael told Fstoppers that when it comes to the photographers, a low res camera is actually better.

He said: "The camera I’m using now is a 14 megapixel Canon SX280. Before that I was using a Sony 12 megapixel point and shoot…and my original camera was a Sony 6 megapixel.

“What I have found is that 14 megapixels is almost too much for what I need to take convincing diorama shots. There is too much information being recorded which makes every little detail show up in the photographs. When working with miniatures, at least for myself, too much detail distracts from the total scene.”

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Michael Paul Smith: One of the Many Pleasant Streets in Elgin Park

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Michael Paul Smith: Bendix Washer Delivery

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Michael Paul Smith: Bendix Washer Delivery

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Michael Paul Smith: Darren Winthrop’s ’65 Mustang Fastback

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Michael Paul Smith: Darren Winthrop’s ’65 Mustang Fastback

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Michael Paul Smith: North Main Street

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Michael Paul Smith: North Main Street