A single plastic bottle doesn’t make for a terribly compelling photo. But what about 10,000 plastic bottles and an brightly costumed model? That’s a different story.
Benjamin Von Wong’s latest project seeks to call attention to the problem of plastic pollution. Von Wong quotes research that says 50% of plastic is used just once before it’s thrown away, and by 2050 the world’s oceans will contain more plastic than fish.
Von Wong wanted to call attention to the problem, and came up with a concept that would help represent his subject beautifully – colorful mermaids lost in a sea of plastic. To do so required a massive number of plastic bottles and an equally large space to stage the scenes. You can read more about the logistics on Von Wong’s blog.
Using a Sony a7R II and a 16-35mm F4 ZA OSS, Von Wong captured the scale of his creations by rigging the camera to a system of plywood and pulleys, suspending it high above his model. He controlled it remotely from an iPad, and previewed images on a borrowed 52″ TV. See how it came together in the behind-the-scenes video below. If you want to take action, you can sign a petition to pledge to reduce your use of plastic.