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The King of Toy Photography | Interview


Q&A with @berol.mirado

I’ve met some incredible content creators through Instagram, but there’s one account in particular that I tend to show off even more than my own. I stumbled on @berol.mirado’s toy photography work a couple years ago and to this day it remains my favorite page on IG. Currently Berol’s feed consists of over 2500 original photos and videos. He uses a wide range of fictional characters and public figures to create cinematic scenes, expressing his love for cannabis as he finds new ways to incorporate it into his work. Berol is a creative genius behind the camera. His stop motion videos are nothing short of amazing, and his photos tend to look so life-like that you sometimes forget they’re just toys! I highly encourage you to spark one up and scroll through Berol’s feed sometime, his unique content and witty captions will surely keep you entertained for hours. Without further ado, here’s a little Q&A with the man himself!

@berol.mirado

HIP: Thanks for taking some time to do this Berol! Let’s talk about how this all started for you. How did you get involved with photography in the first place, and what led you to finding your niche with toys and cannabis? BEROL: Well, I started Instagram when I moved to Colorado. I was bored and started taking pictures of all my hotwheels cars. I’d also take pics of cannabis and action figures, but it evolved more into action figures when I stumbled onto the toy photography community on Instagram.

@berol.mirado

HIP: Thanks for taking some time to do this Berol! Let’s talk about how this all started for you. How did you get involved with photography in the first place, and what led you to finding your niche with toys and cannabis? BEROL: Well, I started Instagram when I moved to Colorado. I was bored and started taking pictures of all my hotwheels cars. I’d also take pics of cannabis and action figures, but it evolved more into action figures when I stumbled onto the toy photography community on Instagram.

@berol.mirado

HIP: You place your action figures in some of the most hilarious situations. Can you walk us through your creative process? What inspires most of your ideas for scenes? BEROL: I get inspiration from everywhere! Sometimes it’s a song or lyric that may trigger an idea. Or movies, I like combining characters from different worlds, you know like characters you would never see together but should be. When I don’t have ideas, I usually medicate and then listen to music or watch TV to get the ideas flowing.

@berol.mirado

HIP: I’m sure the characters inspire many ideas? You have quite the character selection, and their facial expressions always fit so well with each scene! How many figures do you think you have in your collection, and how do you go about acquiring new ones? BEROL: Well, a lot of times the figure’s expression is what dictates the shot. Because now I gotta give the figure something to look at that would give him the expression he’s got! I probably have a couple hundred figures in my collection, and I get them from everywhere… online, Amazon, eBay, BigBadToyStore, comic book shops, etc.

@berol.mirado

HIP: How long were you on Instagram before things started clicking? Was there a moment or series of events that made you realize this was something you should continue doing? BEROL: I’ve been on Instagram 4 years, I think maybe within the first year I noticed people started to dig it. Especially the weed pics for some reason, I guess cause it’s weed, lol! I remember @__yola_is_dope__ reposted a weed pic of mine and I got a lot of attention from it, then High Times started reposting… that was really cool!

@berol.mirado

HIP: What’s most rewarding about doing what you do? Any moments that stand out in particular? BEROL: It’s always nice when the company that makes the figure you’re photographing notices your pic and says something. And High Times reposting my stuff is really cool, but the big deal for me was winning a photo contest for Dope Magazine and getting my pic in there! Felt really good!

@berol.mirado

HIP: I love your stop motion photography! What’s the hardest thing about making those videos, and how many photos does it usually take to produce a one minute clip for IG? BEROL: For me, the hardest part about stop motion is setting up! Sometimes just prepping for the video is an hour, and a video can take me anywhere from 3-10 hours or more. Sometimes I take a couple hundred pics and sometimes over 1000, it all depends on how much movement there is. It’s a labor of love. I’m new to the stop motion, I was using an app before but now I’m using software called Dragonframe. Been using it for a couple months now, still learning it.

@berol.mirado

HIP: If you could add any 3 action figures to your collection, which characters would they be? BEROL: That’s a tough one! I would like to have figures from Point Break (regular and bank robber versions). Also the Lost Boys and a Willy Wonka figure! Those would be dope!

@berol.mirado

HIP: What are your 3 favorite strains right now? BEROL: I’m always smokin on Gorilla Glue, but I like Purple Punch and Do Si Dos also! HIP: Dabs or flower? BEROL: Both! But I really do enjoy a rolled joint!

@berol.mirado

HIP: Do you have any other talented friends in the toy photography community that we should look out for? BEROL: Yeah, check out @plasticaction, @yasuke_79 and @mitchelwuphotography … they do really great stuff! But there’s a whole community of toy photographers doing really great stuff too!

@berol.mirado

HIP: Do you have prints or artwork for sale anywhere? BEROL: No I don’t actually, been slackin hardcore! But yeah, I will start making prints and shirts!

@berol.mirado

HIP: Any big plans brewin? What can we expect to see from @berol.mirado in 2019? BEROL: No big plans as of now, but you can definitely expect more pics! I have a lot of cool figs on pre-order! And if the commander-in-chief keeps acting a fool and giving me more material, you can expect more pics of those too!

For more from the toy photographer and his arsenal of action figures, follow @berol.mirado on Instagram…

For more articles by @Hip2theCrop, click here.

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