We're All Mad Here - Come Join the Tea Party!

16 April 2020

With all the talk lately about protective measures from Covid-19, one might think that the title of our blog is about the state of our sanity, but it's in fact a behind the scenes look at two of our NEW 2020 puzzles, "We're All Mad Here" 1000 piece and "Mad Hatter's Tea Party" 2000 piece. Let's take a look at the set up, which took place in our old boardroom (I say old because we're in the middle of renovations and the board room has been relocated - more about that in another blog).

Enter the hallway to the room where we find a lot of vintage books to create our Alice in Wonderland scene. The Creative Team built the house of hearts cards that stood up quite well during the shoot.  A lot of the china used in this shoot has also made an appearance in some of our other Truly Original Photo puzzles, like Teacups!  Allegra, our Creative Art Director, had to carefully choose which cups and saucers she wanted to stack and which to use for presenting all the goodies for the party.

Behind the Scene Mad Hatter's Tea Party jigsaw puzzle Cobble Hill

There are a lot of little elements seen throughout the puzzles, especially the 2000 piece Mad Hatter's Tea Party.   The interesting thing to note is that many of the little Alice-esque features in the final puzzle were created with Photoshop, so you while you see the object here, you won't see the little image elements that were added in later - like Alice on the cover of the book with the key.

These types of photoshoots require a lot of adjustments and patience. The lighting has to be just right, the angle of the object needs to be clearly seen, and the computer is checked many, many times! Our valiant photographer, Jo-Ann Richards from Works Photography in Victoria, BC has braved many adventures with us and has been our trusted go-to photographer for all of our Truly Original Photo shoots.  She even gets in on the action by holding up little elements to create better shadows!

The "Before" picture below will help you see all the magical work that went into creating this fun adventure with Alice and her friends.  Notice in the photo below, the teapot at the top is not in a tipped position (that was for We're All Mad Here), then slight adjustments were made with it tipping for Mad Hatter's Tea Party (see final photo). There are a lot of little tweaks that are fun to find!  While the "Before" photo was not taken at the same angle and a few teacups were added into the picture, you can use it to see all the Photoshop work that had to be done to make this really pop. Obviously the twinkle lights are one magical element. However, there are many others circled in red so you can compare.  All of these adjustments gave the final image pops of colour and life!

Before Shot of Mad Hatter's Tea Party jigsaw puzzle Cobble Hill
"Before" shot (taken with camera phone) of nearly the final image that was used in Mad Hatter's Tea Party 2000 pc.

In the final shot below, you'll see a cute furry friend in the sugar bowl. She is the "Dormouse" from the adventure story and her name is "Moana". She was actually on set (brought by her owner and our designer, Emily) - that is not a Photoshop job!

Mad Hatter's Tea Party 2000 piece finished puzzle by Cobble Hill
"After" Mad Hatter's Tea Party 2000pc final image with the "Dormouse" in place!

We hope you enjoyed viewing our behind the scenes of Mad Hatter's Tea Party and We're All Mad Here. Thank you! Stay safe and sane out there!