Magical Photographs of a Flying Baby

Photographer Rachel Hulin has a cute project titled The Flying Series that consists of photos of her infant son Henry flying. Hulin tells TIME,

Speaking to some of the unusual body positions of her flying offspring, Hulin said, “I never throw him, and I never move him into a place in the frame that he wasn’t in to begin with. I like Henry to fly the way he feels like it, I never pose him in a specific way. Sometimes he’s graceful and sometimes he’s a little hunchback. I think telling you more would ruin it.” [#]

While she’s keeping quiet on her technique, which she says is “more subtraction than addition”, we think it’s similar to Pat David’s bouncing baby technique that we featured a while back.

The Flying Series by Rachel Hulin (via TIME via My Modern Met)

Image credits: Photographs by Rachel Hulin and used with permission

  • Matt Unique Smith

    Cloth curtains in the shower? Oh, the mildew potential!

  • Aburtch

    Having someone hold the baby, then remove both baby and adult holding them to shoot a background plate then merging the two minus the adult holding would probably do the trick, no?

  • Mrplomox

    Weird light in the first picture = photoshop
    In my mind the shadow on the floor is missing!

  • Anonymous

    I think you are right Michael, very similar to Pat David’s work. As aburtch said, multiple images, composite, slight bit of post to remove the supporting adult and presto. Bouncing babies. These are really well done however, love the tone of all of her images, very dreamy.

  • Spider- Man

    that baby has sooo much brain damage!

  • Spider- Man

    from being tossed around that is

  • ganie

    That’s easy… shoot the background first. Then shoot the baby with someone holding him/her. Superimpose the 2 with the latter on top layer, then carefully erase the “baby-holder” to reveal the background and just leave the baby unerased. The tricky part is just holding the baby in such a way that the hand wouldn’t be seen. But that too is easy to handle with the stamp tool.



  • Jonathan Parker

    you all are such skeptics. didnt you know babies can fly?

  • stuart

    It would be so kickass if photography news didn’t have to consist of bored moms and photoshop tricks that you can teach to a 6 year old.

  • Mantis

    Who cares how it was done?  Sheesh.  You’re clearly not the audience for this.
    Very cool stuff.

  • Killermotion

    Start making the headlines….
    Start your own blog…
    Call and complain…
    Write your congressmen…
    Stop reading this blog…
    Focus on your own photography…

    I don’t know. Just some suggestions.

  • 9inchnail


  • Anonymous

    Actually, as babies we all have the ability to fly but we tend to lose this talent as we get older and adults tell us it’s impossible.

  • Pat David

    That image in the shower is really fantastic, I think.  Something about the babys pose, and the colors really make it dreamy and wonderful.  The lighting is diffuse and soft, too.

    I do think maybe she should have pushed some sort of shadow into the first image also.

    Either way – glad to see other flying babies!  If there are enough of them, even more people will believe! :)

  • John David Bustamante Garay

    Buenísimas, especialmente la flying3 de la ducha, genial!

  • Peter Warmuz

    Thank you very much for inspiring me! I do a monthly photograph project with my kids and this time I did a group shot using this idea! Thanks for sharing.

    This was my take on it:



  • Sean Campbell

    She obviously threw the baby, ran to the camera, snapped the photo, and immediately zoomed back over to catch him in time ;]

  • Desiree Byrd

    The third one down is the only one I can’t figure out how they did…. and it is also my favorite.

    and… WHO has a shower like that? That’s one amazing shower.

  • lostsmitty

    She took 2 photos, one of an empty scene and one of the child being tossed in the air, and then yes she used photoshop or something else to remove the thrower or put the baby in the other picture. Doesn’t matter it’s her photos and she had fun taking them. 

  • Terry

    It’s good to see someone have a good time experimenting . . . to all the naysayers just enjoy it even if you cannot have the wits or creativeness to have thought of it first . . great job Rachel!!!

  • Terry

    It’s good to see someone have a good time experimenting . . . to all the naysayers just enjoy it even if you cannot have the wits or creativeness to have thought of it first . . great job Rachel!!!

  • Mark Hopkins Photography

    Ya think?  Jeez, stroke yourself a little harder.


    “Bored Moms” and “Photoshop tricks that you can teach to a 6 year old?”  Really?   This is more than just photoshop.  Is it ground breaking?  No.  But all Photography isn’t just for other photographers to bitch and moan about.


    Have we all become so cynical that we can’t just look at an image with some amazement and not try to pick it apart?  The sarcastic comments are funny.  But comments from photographers who are just so sure of themselves that they can see the flaws and blah blah blah “look how awesome I am,” and this and that, and “oh, that’s totally photoshopped!”  No, Really?  Just enjoy the work….perhaps offer some constructive thoughts….but, don’t be the person who has to assert themselves in a post by proclaiming just how “awesome you are.”  That’s just weak.

  • unpublished

    Constructive feedback: It’s a fun exercise and friends and family will think it’s cute.  But amazing?  Not really.  Artistic?  Hmmm.  It would be much more interesting to create images where the flying baby isn’t randomly hovering in a scene, but is interconnected with the background somehow.  It should tell some sort of story, even if surreal.  Perhaps the baby sleeping in a crib but awake and flying above it, for example (implying he is dreaming of flying, not be caged in by the crib), etc.  I think the not-so-serious comments reflect the no-so-serious images presented here.  The notion that the artist won’t ‘reveal the secrets’ to how these are made further implies that she is on to something new and cutting-edge.  You have to -be- serious if you want folks to take you seriously.

  • Andre Friedmann

    I hope someday to see the flying babies photographed by the late Bill King.

  • Cool

      I would certainly like to think that any intelligent person could ascertain that this was clearly Photoshopped…. and a really good Photoshopped, and idea at that…  Creativity and cool at that …

  • Cool

    That was completely awesome, I think it is actually better cause I love the lighting and it looks natural