In his Planet Universe series, Adam Kennedy uses a little editing to transform rusty old fire hydrants into his own celestial bodies.
We asked Adam about his process. Here’s what he told us!
I normally just photograph the rusty hydrant from several different angles, because many times I can make two to three planets from one.
I try to let each hydrant guide the process, because the thing that makes the planets interesting is the idea that they are reflections of natural processes on earth, making use of digital manipulation simply to highlight that fact.
I have tried this process with many objects other than fire hydrants, but they often do not work very nicely. For example many wooden banisters have round wooden tops, but the rusty metal orbs are just so perfect because there are such clearly defined areas for the land and sea.
The fact that the darker rusty regions lend themselves to deep blue oceans makes me feel fortunate that this city (San Francisco) has such peculiar fire hydrants, and what would seem to be a shortage of white paint.
I was reading a French Star Wars magazine and suddenly there was an excerpt from a Kathleen Kennedy interview concerning Kylo Ren that I found pretty interesting. She discusses the character, makes parallels with our contemporary world, and at the end I had the impression she wasn’t talking about him as a villain, but as someone who still has to grow and who’s definitely good inside, or at least not bad at all (this is pretty hilarious when you think about all the absurd Kylo Ren drama we have here on tumblr…)
I don’t know if she has talked about this in other interviews, it’s probably the case, but I’ll leave this here for discussion.
I’ve made a rough translation of the French excerpt (English to French to English, feel the irony), probably not the best translation, but at least you’ll have the general idea :
“[Q] You really wanted Adam Driver for this role. What made him the perfect Kylo Ren ?
[KK] I had the opportunity to work with Adam on Lincoln. That was our first met. From the moment we started to think about this character, Kylo Ren, Adam was an obvious choice to me, and one of the few actors who could play him. J.J didn’t know him as well as I did, but he was immediately convinced when they met. He was one of the first actors we had considered for the role and it was an early decision. One of the most interesting aspects of Kylo Ren is his young age. Most of the time, villains are damaged, troubled and older. Making the new Star Wars villain a 30 years old man was a captivating choice. We could take advantage from a troubled adolescence and a past we know very little about. There we could find this tension between light and dark which dominates all the Star Wars universe. We could use it as a metaphor for the path that leads a young adult to his accomplished adult life. The characters who can be drawn to the dark side and seduced by all sorts of experiences that might be dangerous are compelling for us. For today’s audience it’s an original, fascinating and appealing character.
When we look at our own lives, it all depends on the choices we’ve made. Kylo Ren seems to have taken many bad decisions, but they aren’t necessarily bad decisions within the context of Star Wars, where they can lead to almost anything. This story reflects the real world. Many kids evolve in a political environment that can be difficult to decipher, and many events suggest that people are drawn to danger, trouble and agitation. In terms of international policy, there’s a sense that we live a time full of upheavals. The political structure of the Star Wars narratives reflects this in a unique way. Kylo Ren represents this dark side of society that can be appealing when we don’t know which side to choose and right and wrong become very vague concepts. All these aspects make Kylo Ren a really complex character and offer us many different options for future plots.”
Emphasis are mine. But seriously. Seriously. If Kylo Ren really is, for the writers, an image of our contemporary youth searching for answers, making mistakes and trying to grow in a chaotic world, who can simply imagine that he will die unredeemed, and that the message of this new trilogy won’t be a message of hope ?
I leave the original French text and the references under the cut for those who are interested.