Synthesizer fans have been coming across photos of your Analog Miniature collections on the internet. In fact your set on ï¬‚ickr.com has been viewed over 80,000 times. What inspired you to make these?
Well I’ve always been interested in human/machine interfaces and I think analogue synths and equipment are quite exciting visually because of all the knobs and sliders (usually one control for every function). I always wanted to design a synth but lacked the skills and resources, and making small models was something I could do. As far as I was aware nobody had built miniature synths before. I was already building small sculptures out of framing mattboards so this seemed like a logical step.
How long does it take you to make one?
Generally I’ll spend 2 to 3 days on each model, but I’m a perfectionist so if something isn’t right I will always redo it.
The photography of the miniatures is an art in itself. Do you have any comments about that? Are you a camera, lighting or Photoshop geek?
All of the above. I use a Nikon D-80 and a couple of speedlights. All of my diffusers and snoots have been constructed from cardboard and copy paper, so it is very much photography on the cheap. I love the process of setting up a photographic composition, but I still don’t see myself as a professional photographer.
Are the Miniatures your most popular work? Did that surprise you?
Absolutely. I had no idea they would appeal to anyone outside of the synth community.
I see your miniatures have found there way onto Steven Jansen’s CD cover. Are there other commercial places the Miniatures can be found?
Well I’ve done a couple of CD covers. The Moog Acid record is the other major one. I was delighted to be involved with that because I’m a big fan of the artists (Jean Jacques Perrey and Luke Vibert) and I think Non-Format also did a terriï¬c job with the sleeve design (link). I also produced some work for a compilation on Canadian label Do Right! Music (link). There are a few other commercial projects featuring the miniatures which should see the light of day soon.
Can anyone buy one of your Miniatures? Continue reading Interview with Dan McPharlin. Analog Miniatures.