The Christmas Crash

Everything starts with an idea…and usually towards the end of the year I have a lot more time to think about personal projects as I reflect on the last 12 months of the year and begin to look forward to the year ahead and what I wish I had created and what I want to create in the future. This year, while perusing through my portfolio I noticed that this amazing, and creative time of year was not represented in any of my images. All except for one “creepy Santa” conceptual portrait I took a couple of years back, while working with a band for a holiday event promo shot.  Christmas is an amazing time of year, a year that is built on faith, imagination, sharing and the belief in the, “What If…”

“What if…” I’m on the naughty or nice list.

“What if…” it snows or doesn’t snow for Christmas.

“What if, what if, what if…”

So my idea, my “what if” started to be created around the thought of CAR TROUBLE. WHAT IF you had car trouble and triple A couldn’t get to you in time to help you make it over the river and through the woods to grandmothers house, where you wanted to go. Then as the idea started to mature and started to take root and using the jolly saint himself was perfect!

“What if…” Santa had sleigh problems.

“What if…” Santa couldn’t make it on Christmas night.

Would Christmas still be Christmas on Christmas morning?

As a child, I would be devastated because my hope in having the Transformer, Star Wars, Lego, something, something, something wouldn’t be brought to me by a red stranger in the night. BUT as an adult, I know that Christmas always comes! Christmas comes because it’s so much more than about the delivery of toys and gifts on a single night. It’s about everything else that happens behind the scenes all year long; leading up to this time of year, for the joy of others, which make this time of year so special.


Christmas Crash
Christmas Crash #1: Conceptual narrative of Santa Clause having some behind the scene travel issues on Christmas night with his sleigh going down for a crash landing in the desert.

A few selections of some behind the scene images to make of the hero shot of the story, to help illustrate the composite work of what went into the image. From left to right; 1- Detailed mask layer showing the fine hairs of Santas beard, which was created as part of the retouching process to extract Santa from his picture so he could be used on another. 2- The landscape scene, which was scouted out and chosen to showcase the main scene of the story. The landscape was shot at sunset and then for retouching converted from a day-to-night image to give the appearance of a late night crash landing. 3- Santa photographed in a private mobile studio at the north pole for convenience and control of light.


Christmas Crash #2
Christmas Crash #2: Close up of Santa looking to the distance.


Christmas Crash 3
Christmas Crash #3: What if….did Santa make it or not, will he come?



Christmas Crash 4
Christmas Crash #4: “The cliff hanger,” did Santa make it?




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