How Jay-Z’s “Blueprint 3″ Album Cover Was Shot Using a Projector and Paint


The photo above is the album cover for Jay-Z’s 2009 album Blueprint 3, featuring a photo of a pile of musical instruments and recording equipment with three red lines across the front. It might look Photoshopped — an easy way to create such an effect — but it was actually done with perspective trickery and good ol’ fashioned hard work.

After stacking the white-painted equipment into a corner, the team dimmed the lights and used a projector to display the three lines across the scene. They then took paint and covered all the areas that were highlighted by the projection. Once these areas were filled in, all they had to do was replace the projector with a camera to obtain the neat perspective illusion seen in the photo.

Here’s a behind-the-scenes time-lapse video showing how it all came together:

Click here for a higher-resolution version of the album cover photo.

We’ve featured a number of perspective art photo projects here before, and this projection trick was likely used for some of them (Bela Borsodi’s amazing alphabet letter photos, for example).

For others, you’ll need to have a through-the-viewfinder perspective of the scene (e.g. wireless live view). Zander Olsen’s wrapped trees and Golpeavisa’s food face are two such projects that come to mind.


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