On World Book Day (April 23) World of Pop! Volume 7 became available for purchase, capturing an entire year's worth of Pop! characters and representing dozens of fandoms and story lines. In addition to containing a basic marketing image of each Pop!, Funko's exceedingly talented art department collaborated to create stunning, artistic photos inspired by their favorite fandoms and characters.
Every year since 2012, Funko has released an art book and catalog documenting the year's worth of new Pop! figures resulting in World of Pop! Volumes 1-6. With a World of Pop! Volume 7 just around the corner, bringing with it a brief opportunity to buy the previous books as well, it seems like the perfect opportunity to celebrate and share some beautiful Pop! art.
Unfortunately, a single book can only contain so many Pop! images and World of Pop! Volume 7 simply didn't have space for all the photographs captured by the art team, however amazing they might be. Since many of the photos that didn't make the cut deserve to be seen, we'll be sharing them over the next few weeks. In addition to artistic photographs, each Didn't Make the Cut feature will include some background information from the artist that created the image--their relationship to the fandom and characters, any special techniques they used while capturing the photograph and interesting occurrences while shooting.
Happy looking and reading!
Artist: Matthew Ferbrache, Packaging Designer
"Mad Max: Fury Road is one of my favorite films of all time. I have a nostalgic love for the old Mad Max movies (especially Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome) but Fury Road is the only one in the series that I feel can be counted as a truly great film. It’s a near perfect action movie that’s exhilarating, emotional and socially significant. Plus, it features some of the most mind blowing practical effects I’ve ever seen. They actually built all those vehicles! And they’re all drivable! I saw it in the theater on opening day and it remains one of the most memorable theater experiences of my life. I have a vivid memory of coming out of the theater to see a line of people waiting to see Pitch Perfect 2 and thinking, 'You’re all in the wrong line! The line for Fury Road is over there!'
Anyway, when the art team was told we were going to be making a line of Pop!s for Fury Road, we were so excited! There was literally cheering and applause. I designed the packaging for both the Pop!s and the Mystery Minis and it was a dream come true for me. Getting the chance to work with the things I love is something that will never get old. It’s one of my favorite aspects of working at Funko.
As we started work on World of Pop Volume 7, I knew that there would be another opportunity to work on Fury Road content and I jumped at the chance. I had a few ideas brewing in my head for the photo and I was excited to try and evoke the frenetic energy of the film with my photography. Do I try to recreate a scene from the film? Do I shoot it in black and white? Could I build my own Doof Wagon?
I tried a number of different compositions using a model of Max’s V8 Interceptor but I couldn’t get the shot to work the way I wanted. I decided to rethink my approach and started shooting some photos of Max and Furiosa together. Rather than trying to recreate something from Fury Road, I decided to try to create a shot that would fit with the aesthetic of the film.
The concrete floor of my garage has a little bit of a gloss to it that looks pretty interesting in the camera so I set up the Pop!s on the ground, grabbed some old car parts I had lying around and took a few shots. I loved the way everything looked, but something was missing. The set I created had a very industrial look to it so I thought that adding some sparks flying through the air would fit nicely. I set up the metal grate and steel wool I had used on my Tekken photo and tried photographing the burning embers as they fell. It looked super cool, but it wasn’t quite what I was looking for.
While brainstorming, my mind kept going back to that first line of the Fury Road trailer, 'My world is fire and blood.' Trying to incorporate blood into the photo seemed a bit too grisly but fire might be something I could use! Taking a page out of Dumb Teenager Me’s book of tricks, I grabbed a lighter and a can of WD-40. With the camera set up (and a fire extinguisher close by), I stepped back behind the Pop!s and let a few huge flames loose from the can. The many times I had tried burning the steel wool had left quite a bit of debris around the figures which added a cool grittiness to the whole scene.
In the end, I got a photo that I was really happy with. The flames lit the Pop!s beautifully from behind and added a lot of drama to the shot. I’m really proud of how it turned out, but unfortunately there just wasn’t space for it in World of Pop! Vol 7. Sometimes you have to leave your favorites on the cutting room floor."