Now to create the final scene for the YCN brief, the final scene represents one of the most iconic scenes in the story of Alice in Wonderland- the mad hatters tea party scene. Now this is one i am re-imagining very differently to how it is in other versions of the story, instead of doormice and wacky characters, i will be allowing the surroundings to tell the story. And whereas the scene in the disney film for example is lovely and bright and well lit, mine will be dark and mysterious. Whilst there will be elements such as tea related objects and mismatched chairs, these will be intertwined with abstract large flowers and trees.  I also want to give the air that not all is what it seems, have the characters left in a hurry and thats why there is tea spilt and things knocked over? It gives more of a sinister take on the scene, whilst it still being magical enough to appeal to my target audience.

I built the paper and ink parts of the set and combined them with more dolls house miniatures and some elaborate “cake” miniatures, i used a combination of dollhouse lighting and torches to create a dimly lit scene with lots of shadows. After taking lots of images, when looking through them some of the blurry ones that wouldn’t have seemed good enough, started to look really interesting, it became more about obscuring the obvious to entice the viewer, as opposed to telling them exactly what was going on. This is definitely much more evolved and stylistic than the first “tea party ” experiment i did, this has more depth and i love the handmade feel to it.


Below are some  progress images from making the scene, i found the papercut roots i was originally going to use in the hole scene, looked really interesting as tree foliage and made some intricate shadows. In this scene i mixed up real size and miniature objects to create some surrealist inspired contrasts, e.g. the teacup base for the table and tiny tea cups. Above i have also put the original experiment i did with the tea party scene, and the newer version for comparison. I find the top image is oversaturated and sickly in colour now, with too much cute and not enough atmosphere. Whereas the second image feels more like a world itself rather than some toys in a garden.

The images below are of building the scene, and photographing it for different angles to see what works and what doesn’t. I also took some close up’s and especially the close up of the teapot made me consider even more the idea of vignette images in my second part of my FMP, it adds something else to the story to highlight objects within it and make them real.

I started by building them out of just paper and ink illustrations, in the story it mentions the tea being held infront of a house, i was unsure of including this reference because it felt too literal, i tried it out though below and it gave decent depth of field, but i felt like it didn’t “fit” into my interpretation of wonderland._DSC1358 _DSC1361 _DSC1364 _DSC1365 _DSC1382 _DSC1384

This is where i gave up with the house idea and decided something more simple would suffice and not distract from whats happening in the foreground._DSC1393 _DSC1397

this is one of the images (above) where i started to think more about using vignettes in the second half of my final major project, because i think these add an interesting little extra to a story- much like Mireille Fauchon when she used them + archiving in “The Prisoner of Zenda”

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Here i accidently knocked the set whilst trying to shoot from above, but i really liked the effect it was more of a ransacked tea party 🙂_DSC1432 _DSC1439

my favorite imagery from the tests were one like this, with high focus but low lighting, and one focal point, what i didn’t like was seeing the join between the background floor and foreground floor though. _DSC1457 _DSC1460 _DSC1585 _DSC1597

I also thought this one was quite interesting, just by focusing on a simple object that doesn’t really relate to the narrative- it changes the meaning of the image._DSC1613 _DSC1634 _DSC1638

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I played with stronger lighting in this one above, i think the shadows were great, but this was before i had decided on a background.


final tea party

think i was able to produce some strong images today, i experimented lots especially with shadows and lighting, i found again that i favoured uplighting from just underneath the set, so i taped a torch onto the camera tripod (improvisation). i found it really hard to choose an image from this set to submit, because although i favoured the ones with the foreground in focus like a flower or object, as opposed to the whole image; it made less sense to the story when it was so obscured, so i comprimised and chose one that had both focus and obstruction. The chosen image is below:


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