Famous photographs re-created in Play-Doh

Original photography: Untitled, 1995, from the series 'Ray's a laugh' by Richard Billingham Original photograph: Untitled, 1995, from the series Ray's a laugh by Richard Billingham.

Famous photographs re-created in toy bricks were once all the rage, now it seems that Play-Doh might become the medium of choice for those looking to pay homage to photographic masterpieces.

Eleanor Macnair is leading the way with her blog, which recreates work by Julia Margaret Cameron, Diane Arbus and Man Ray to name but a few.

Inspiration came from art partnership MacDonaldStrand, who made dot-to-dot drawings of popular photographs selected by an online survey.

"They then organised a photographic pub quiz and one of the rounds was to make an iconic photograph out of Play-Doh, and so it began," says Macnair.

Original photograph: Photographer Dennis Stock holds a camera in front of his face (The Photojournalist) by Andreas Feininger for Time & Life pictures Original photograph: Photographer Dennis Stock holds a camera in front of his face (The Photojournalist) by Andreas Feininger for Time & Life pictures.

Each image takes around an hour to create and shoot. "I have six pots of Play-Doh which I create all of the photographs with, so this explains the limited colour palette", she adds.

"It is honestly just a bit of fun and I wouldn't want anyone to take it seriously. I shared them with a small group of friends and it really just grew from there.

"My hope is that maybe it will introduce a new audience to some of my favourite photographs or re-introduce those who are already familiar with the works, so they start to really look at the photographs again, the content and the context."

Initially the pictures were created in the evening and left overnight before shooting in daylight, but they tended to dry up, so now the process is to take the photographs straight away.

"As you can tell I'm not much of a photographer so there's no uniformity to my photographs, but I hope that this is part of their charm - my amateurism."

Original photograph: Child with Toy Hand Grenade, 1962 by Diane Arbus Original photograph: Child with Toy Hand Grenade, 1962, by Diane Arbus.

Some pictures are her own favourites, others are requested.

"The most popular request is for Gursky. I'm going to attempt Jeff Wall's, A Sudden Gust of Wind (after Hokusai), soon. I think I'm going to try to get up to 100 posts then call it a day."

"None of the copies exist anymore. They are all crumpled back up in their respective pots, waiting for the next time I have a spare hour."

Original photograph: Christine Keeler, 1963 by Lewis Morley Original photograph: Christine Keeler, 1963, by Lewis Morley.
Original photograph: Charles, Vasa, Minnesota 2002 from Sleeping by the Mississippi by Alec Soth Original photograph: Charles, Vasa, Minnesota, 2002, from Sleeping by the Mississippi by Alec Soth.
Original photograph: Nan and Brian in Bed, New York City, 1983, by Nan Goldin Original photograph: Nan and Brian in Bed, New York City, 1983, by Nan Goldin.
Original photograph: Helen Tamiris 1929 by Man Ray from the Pompidou Centre, Paris Original photograph: Helen Tamiris 1929 by Man Ray, from the Pompidou Centre, Paris.
Original photograph: Iago Study from an Italian, 1867, by Julia Margaret Cameron Original photograph: Iago Study from an Italian, 1867, by Julia Margaret Cameron

You can see more of Eleanor Macnair's pictures on her website.

Phil Coomes Article written by Phil Coomes Phil Coomes Picture editor

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