Kids used to grow out of toys when they got older, but that may have been because when your toys were either blocks of wood or really simple dolls, they lost their aesthetic appeal to adult sensibilities. Nowadays, a whole new level of sculpting and artistic talent goes into making action figures, whether we’re talking about a $20 Star Wars figure that uses face-printing technology, or a $200+ Hot Toys 1/6 scale figure where the face looks like an exact copy of the actor down to the last pore. And as figures have become more elaborately detailed, a new generation of toy fans have taken to photography that showcases every intricate contour of what we consider works of popular art.The work of Shahzad Bhiwandiwala recently caught our eye, as his photos of some of the nicer figures out there, from Mezco One:12 to Bandai Meisho Realization and Hot Toys gives them an extra layer of life. Often, the toys themselves are enough and some lighting and effects are all it takes to have them really pop.Other times, a little customizing gives them a grittier feel.”My preferred scale is the 1/12 one for more dynamic photographs, and [I] prefer going to 1/6 and above for portraits and single character photographs,” Bhiwandiwala told Nerdist. He learned toy photography was a thing via social media. “It was an immediate connect for me as I have always been very geeky, so combining my love for story telling and capturing the moment with my childhood heroes was just too perfect to pass up on,” he said. “It was a means for me to tell the stories of the characters I loved. The toy photography community is an extremely close knit and helpful one and I had a lot of help starting off with all the tips and guidance I received at the time.”You can (and should) check out more of his work on Instagram and Facebook. Considering all the high-end figures he owns, he has clearly invested a lot into his hobby, and it shows.Do you have favorite toy photographers? Let us know in comments!
Images:Â Shahzad Bhiwandiwala