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Working for Scale

Posted by
Stephen Phillips (San Francisco, United States) on 27 July 2008 in Art & Design and Portfolio.

Salinas Valley contains dozens - if not hundreds - of these fantastic murals of human activity, by artist John Cerney. Here, model Jess - gives scale to his work.

John worked as a set designer in Hollywood for awhile - before returning to his home town of Salinas. (he went to Salinas High School) His works include Wrigley Field on the sides of a barn, a complete auto wreck including an investigating motorcycle cop at a auto body shop - a complete produce store with a Corvette in front on the side of a warehouse - a massive field of well-tended lettuce on the side of a lettuce processing plant - and so much more. His website:

© copyright 2018 by Stephen Phillips Photography / Oakland, California /
please respect these rights - do not copy or use these images without permission.

Paco Díaz from Palma de Mallorca, Spain

Very curious treatment of the image. It looks like a good illustration of an article on the subjetc. I like it very much and I don't know how you have edited it like that.

27 Jul 2008 5:11am

Cia from Kvänum, Sweden

Great composition.

27 Jul 2008 6:29am

Kylie Greenan from Richmond, Australia

Wow, aren't they awesome, makes for a very interesting image... I was wondering how you got the people to look like that before I read your narrative, well done, I love it Stephen!

27 Jul 2008 8:12am

@Kylie Greenan: John Cerney's work is, indeed - awesome. I encourage everyone to check out his website at:

Ilan from Israel

Love the wide angle, love the colors... That's a great moment to capture :)
Great photo, I really enjoyed it!

27 Jul 2008 9:28am

Vink from French riviera - Grasse, France

Excellent angle and composition !

27 Jul 2008 10:18am

Michael Skorulski from Cigel, Slovakia

An amazing image, quite startling. At first, I thought he was real. A wonderful composition enhanced greatly by that phenomenal sky.

27 Jul 2008 10:52am

Ted from South Wales, United Kingdom

Great shot and use of model for scale. Good work Stephen!

27 Jul 2008 2:20pm

Laurent from Lyon, France

very good idea to introduce someone for the scale. At first sight the "Giant" looks real and it destabilised me. Then I understood.
A picture that works very good for me.
I enjoyed also the composition and apart of the difference of scale I like the difference between the attitude of the old farmer against the me glamour one of Jess.

27 Jul 2008 3:00pm

hugo poon from hong kong, Hong Kong

Wonderfully interesting!!! Enjoy this alot... thanks for the link too.:-)

27 Jul 2008 3:33pm

Agniecha from Canada

Very interesting! I was taken by surprise and thought this is a photomanipulation until I read your description. Awesome idea!

27 Jul 2008 3:39pm

gbe from kansas city, United States

fascinating - well photographed and just a great subject. thanks for the link too.

27 Jul 2008 4:39pm

Marcie from United States

Amazing! Who'd of thought that this guy was larger than life?!?!? Reminds me of Jack and the Beanstalk - the larger than life guy being the giant. Nice!

27 Jul 2008 5:27pm

@Marcie: Ho Ho Ho

Mirko Herzner from Mühlheim am Main, Germany

I wasn't sure who was the model at first :-) Both look so natural! Very good even if we can't see much of Jess... ;-)

27 Jul 2008 7:01pm

@Mirko Herzner: Jess was my very first post at AM3 - 12 May 2008

Alun Lambert from cheshire, United Kingdom

great shot, made me laugh

27 Jul 2008 7:12pm

akarui from Kagoshima, Japan

The model gives the scale and the work seems to be hudge. But if the fence and Jess are a little behind, the wide angle have increased that difference of scale. Built in the middle of nowhere? I might buy a big salad :)

27 Jul 2008 11:17pm

dj.tigersprout from San Bruno, United States

hehe -- an excellent capture! humorous and yet miraculous too! love the road sign and the beautifully hazy sky!

28 Jul 2008 2:21am

sherri from Little Rock, Arkansas, United States

Interesting details and certainly a different type of art.

28 Jul 2008 2:41am

Isao from isère, France

j'aime la "mise en scène", la composition et les couleurs, trés originale cette photo !!!

I like the "staging", composition and color, very original this picture !

29 Jul 2008 8:14pm

@Isao: Thank you, Isao.