Photographer Brendan Fitzpatrick uses both chest X-ray and mammogram machines in his photography, a technique he learned when he had to develop an X-ray like look for a client—it turned out the best way was to use actual X-rays. He told us about his work.
I’ve been working on the X-ray project for about three years now. I started with flowers and then with toys. Right now I’m working on a roast chicken dinner with rosemary and lemon. It’s a fairly gothic food shot it has to be said.
There’s a certain amount of chance involved when choosing what to X-ray. Some subjects can be rendered unrecognisable when X-rayed and just look like a scrambled mess. I look at shapes and silhouettes. If the shape is distinctive and interesting I’m willing to take a risk on what the inside might have to offer.
The engineering that goes into these essentially disposable objects is really incredible. There’s a lot of talent out there in those anonymous industrial estates.
The Chinook Helicopter has a charming mechanism. The back door drops down, a tank and a soldier emerge, fire a few rounds then go back inside and the ramp closes behind them. All the while the whole thing is circling the floor while the rotors spin, there’s loads of engine noise and gunfire and the lights flash. You have to admire the guy who put that much care and character and charm into a two dollar toy.
I have to mention the Talking Cat and Dog image. They didn’t look like much in the store but I reckoned they looked stupid enough to work. You know you’re looking at a cat and a dog but you’ve seen them like this. Somehow they look like a couple. The pieces of tape holding the wiring in place I’ve not seen in another toy. They make me think of bandages, which adds to the dog vs cat relationship.
Brendan Fitzpatrick is a professional photographer based in Sydney, Australia.