Godzilla, A Photo Essay

As a photographer it's important to step outside of your comfort zone sometimes and try new things. Sometime it's a chore, sometimes it's fun, but it's always a challenge. About a year before this issue the art director of the magazine, Henry Ortega, who happens to be a fan of Godzilla, came up with the idea to do something in honor of the 60th anniversary of the first Godzilla movie. The idea was to build a diorama from scenes in the original movie. Now I'm one of those guys who's mechanically challenged, and the very mention of building something, let alone a replica of 1954 Tokyo, sends me looking for the exit sign. Fortunately for me, and readers of our magazine, Henry on the other hand was up for the challenge, and set out on a year long journey to research, draw schematics, and finally build the amazing miniature set we needed for the shoot. In the end I think I had the easy part, but we were very happy with the results. Infact, most people thought we had obtained still shots from the original movie.:) A compliment indeed.


Behind-the-scenes look of the diorama shoot for Okinawa Living.

The "King of Monsters" was born on November 3, 1954 when Ishiro Honda's Gojira was released in theaters. But some would argue that it's real birthdate was August 6, 1945, when an atomic bomb devastated Hiroshima.

Godzilla diorama spread from May 2014 Okinawa Living feature on the 60th Anniversary of Godzilla.

Project proof of concept shot. Taken with an iPhone 5s and processed for effect. I considered the idea of shooting the whole project with an iPhone but limited lighting options, no way to trigger flash killed the idea.

Henry's original schematic along with one of the final shot based on the sketch.