I have been finding myself coming back to the Nimbus Photography series by Dutch artist Berndnault Smilde recently. Smilde creates clouds indoors using a smoke machine. In order to create the clouds, Smilde says that "It has to be cold, damp, and really wet, so I'm moisturizing the air as much as possible." He tells the BBC that "The moisture will stick to the smoke, making it much heavier." The cloud holds its shape just long enough to be photographed before it dissipates. Smilde notes that there really isn't a way to predict the shape a cloud will take, so they create the clouds hundreds of times, then choose one to be the final piece.
These have such a surreal quality for me. I love the all of the contrast in these pieces: such as the white of the cloud vs the color of the room; the hard and even sometimes ornate quality of the architecture versus the soft billowiness of the clouds; and placing an object we associate with the natural world and expect to see outside within a man made structure.
Smilde was also recently commissioned to do a series with Harper's Bazaar where he created clouds for a photo shoot featuring famous designers. I particularly liked what Karl Lagerfeld and Albert Elvaz had to say about clouds and fashion. You can see their photos and their quotes below.
Do you have a favorite from the images below?