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Creating a Stunning Make Believe World For A Stylized Shoot With Alexia Sinclair

By Hanssie on May 4th 2015

Photographers seem to be a dime a dozen these days. The images you see floating around social media look pretty much the same across the board. If the trend is flare, then 99% of the photographs out there will have some similar looking flare style. If the post process style is vintage and faded, then the majority will have some form of vintage fade. Imitation, after all, is the nature of creatives, and some may argue the sincerest form of flattery. And then you get the 1%. Those are the trendsetters. The photographer’s whose work everyone emulates. Photographers like Alexia Sinclair.

Alexia Sinclair’s work is distinct. Never lacking in imagination, Alexia creates fantasy worlds where 17th-century castles come back to life and original fairy tale worlds leap from her imagination onto the pages of an old book. The attention to little details is what sets Alexia’s work apart from her contemporaries – she designs the sets, the costuming, and the lighting.



In the following behind the scenes video, Alexia takes us through the creation of her latest image, “Into the Gloaming.” She explains on the Profoto Blog that “the gloaming is that time of day where the soft glow of dusk envelopes your soul. Where the nocturnal gatekeepers take control, and anything seems possible. You can (at least I do) imagine secret doorways in the trunks of trees or toadstools the size of houses and it’s easy to understand why it’s commonly known as the magic hour.” 

Wanting to create the fairy tale world she saw in her mind, Alexia went to great lengths to complete this stunning image. From sourcing the mushrooms from a forgotten WWII tunnel to printing her own fabric to make the set and the dress, the final image is something that warrants all of your attention just to see and appreciate the intricacies that went the creation of it. For example, part of the background is an old bookcase with books that was painstakingly painted from the fabric she created of the dress and printed on her printer. The castle that jumps from the pages of an old book took days to make by hand.

This is the first of six video documentaries in Alexia’s Into the Gloaming project. The final image and Alexia’s post on the journey into making this fantasy world can be found here.

To see more of Alexia’s work, check our her website, Facebook, and Twitter.

Watch the Episode 1 below and be inspired.

[Via Profoto/Alexia Sinclair]

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Hanssie is a Southern California-based writer and sometimes portrait and wedding photographer. In her free time, she homeschools, works out, rescues dogs and works in marketing for SLR Lounge. She also blogs about her adventures and about fitness when she’s not sick of writing so much. Check out her work and her blog at Follow her on Instagram

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Jason Ulsrud

    I dig the attention to detail, and appreciate the non-composited complexity of her work. In other words, COOL STUFF!

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  2. Ben Webb

    Oh and I meant to say AMAZING

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  3. Ben Webb

    I think at the 10 minute mark she may have eatin some of the other mushrooms

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  4. Ed Rhodes


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  5. Scott Trombley

    Very unique, awesome and inspiring!

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  6. Thomas Horton

    I would not agree that she is a trend-setter. More a successful niche photographer.

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  7. Brandon Dewey

    cool video

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