by Inigo del Castillo in New Photography on Monday 3 February 2014

Photographer Jens Lennartsson wanted to stand out from the crowd in order to catch the attention of potential clients. His solution? He ordered 400 action figures of himself. In this interview, we get to know more about the guy behind the epic self-promotion and how he’s doing after the stunt. [read our original post about Jens Lennartsson]

Where did the inspiration for the action figure portfolio come from?
One thing that I’m not short of is creativity. I do, however, lack self-censorship, discipline and the ability to not eat too much, but that’s another story. My brain is constantly coming up with ideas, good or bad. Mostly bad. Somewhere I had the thought: ‘I wonder if anyone ever made an action figure of themselves’.

Not many people have action figures of themselves. How does it feel to have an army of mini-Jens?
Awesome! That’s like every boys dream! It’s a pretty cool way to say hello to someone that you would like to get in touch with.

Has the action figure marketing worked? Have art directors, agencies, and editors responded well?
More than expected! I’ve been contacted by editors and agents all over the world.

How long did it take to conceptualize, design, and manufacture the toys?
The pictures were sent to the manufacturer during the summer 2012. The first figures were sent out in October 2013.

Have people bought the action figures just for the sake of having it?
Actually yes. When I realized that a lot of people wanted to buy the figures, I gave them the possibility to do that and in the same time support another project that I am working on – EYE AM. This is a non-profit that will give kids in less fortunate locations the opportunity to share their lives through photography. On Giens you are able to read more about that.

By the way, I just released a book with 100 tips on how to become a better travel photographer.