A Man Spent Years Taking Photos Of One Small Town. When You Look Closer, You’ll See Why

Artist and photographer Michael Paul Smith has spent hours upon hours photographing one special town that he holds very dear to his heart. There is something that always drew him to it, and the images he created are simple, but stunning. They glow with small-town charm and innocence, reminiscent of days and decades past.

The town he photographs is quaint and beautiful.


It’s like each picture tells a story of how life used to be in the United States.

2-model-town4There’s not much going on in these pictures, but it’s obvious that this town is nothing but charm.

3-model-town But, as it turns out, also not real.


Michael builds custom miniature models and sets, meticulously crafting every detail.

5-model-town3Then, the 60 year-old photographer creates the hyper-realistic images.

6-model-town5If you didn’t know any better, you might think these are vintage photos of a town from a few decades ago…


…and NOT the extremely small models this man built.

8-model-town8He started building these models as an exercise. He wanted to practice his craft and also photography.

9-model-town9He never imagined it would be a “dream-like reconstruction” of the town he grew up in.

10-model-town10To Michael, this is what quintessential America looked like when he was a kid.

11-model-town11It is absolutely beautiful.

12-model-town12If “Elgin Park” were a real town, I would love to live there.

He creates the scenes by setting up Danbury Mint and Franklin Mint die cast autos and trucks in front of his models on card tables.

14-model-town14Then, he uses the surrounding scenery to make the backgrounds for the photos.

30-model-town30The perspective has to be JUST right…

17-model-town1718-model-town18Usually the resulting photos are completely convincing.

19-model-town19Even when you know what’s going on behind the scenes.

20-model-town20It’s all an illusion…

21-model-town21…But Michael is able to make an incredibly convincing one.

23-model-town23His selfies aren’t part of the official photo series, but I think they just add to the charm of his work.24-model-town24

If you’d like to see more pictures of this perfect American town, visit the Elgin Park website. To learn more about Michael’s work, please visit the Craftsmanship Museum website for a full writeup on his talents and process.

Source: Amusing Planet

Michael’s work is a reminder of how things used to be (and how we may remember them). Share his unique photography with others.

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