A Barbie photographer who creates compelling photos of the iconic doll says that the record-breaking movie has generated a newfound audience.
Barbie starring Margot Robbie became the biggest debut at the box office this year landing a staggering $155 million on its opening weekend. Photographer Nicole Houff from Minneapolis tells PetaPixel that the movie has piqued peoples’ interest.
“I’ve done art fairs for around a dozen years. It’s one of my favorite ways to interact with people,” Houff says.
“This summer has been incredibly busy because Barbie is in the ether and on top of the public consciousness. The movie has generated this newfound audience for me, which has been incredibly exciting.”
Houff owns around 100 Barbies and is something of a connoisseur; she is a fan of Barbies from the mid-20th century.
“My photographs have strong design and color elements, often referencing 50s and 60s aesthetics. So, while I sometimes use pink, I often rely more on the vintage color palettes from those eras. With her debut in 1959, Barbie fits in nicely,” she says.
“When I’m taking a Barbie photo, I’m looking at content, balance, and aesthetic. So, I’m not just trying to make a pretty picture.
“I also like to give the viewer the opportunity to insert a narrative. I feel like if I can put a smile on someone’s face after looking at my art, I’ve done something right.”
Indeed, her photos incorporate horror characters like Creature from the Black Lagoon and one of her favorite photos is Barbie with Godzilla.
“The thing with Barbie is that she can be anything and anyone and that’s what the coolest thing about Barbie is,” she tells Fox 9.
“I love that she seamlessly melds into my love for the 50s and 60s visual aesthetics and captures my sense of humor,” Houff tells PetaPixel.
“But I really love the fact that everyone knows her. Everyone has an opinion of her. She has a larger-than-life cultural impact that no other toy can match.”
Houff, who uses a Nikon D850 and an AlienBees B800 strobe light (pink of course), to capture her Barbie photos has been to see the movie and loved it.
“I absolutely saw the Barbie movie opening weekend! I have to say, it far exceeded my expectations. I highly recommend seeing it!”
Image credits: All photos by Nicole Houff.