Every once in a while a photographer goes viral on Instagram and starts a whole trend of similar-style photographs. Daniel Mercandante seems to be doing just that with his series called “Rainbow Road”. His surreal, colorful photos will blow your mind!
1. The series is aptly called Rainbow Road and shows (you guessed it) a rainbow colored road stretching across various terrains — rivers, forests, clearings in the woods, fields, beaches, etc.
2. The rainbow road looks like a Mario Kart track brought to life. The skilled photographer managed to bring something from a video game into the real world without computer graphics or excessive work in Photoshop after the photos were taken.
3. Daniel Mercandante creates photos for his Rainbow Road series with his camera, at night (or early in the mornings) with very long exposure. This allows the camera to pick up moving lights, showing them as a trail in the final photographs.
4. To achieve the even spacing and width of each lane on the Rainbow Road, Daniel uses a custom built rig of lights, each of which has a gel filter that gives the light a unique color. Mr. Mercandante takes his rig, launches the camera’s shutter remotely, and walks across the train creating the winding, mesmerizing road.
5. So far, most of the photographs taken in this Rainbow Road series have been taken in Connecticut. However, Daniel Mercandante recently went on a trip to Guatemala and took several photos for the series there. Rainbow Road is now international, spanning across borders.
6. His main job is in advertising. He is both a photographer and videographer, and works with his wife to create campaigns for brands like AT&T, Volkswagen, Macy’s, Netflix, and Apple. You would think amazing photos like this would be the main occupation of an artist, but no — this magnificent series is just a hobby.
7. When talking about his inspirations for the series Daniel mentions his longing to create some magic in the real world. As things are gloomy and dull in real life, he thought some light surrealism, color, and hopefulness would be a nice change of pace.
8. In Rainbow Road (and in all his works in general), Daniel’s goal is to discover beauty in the mundane. He likes to take things that are ordinary, give them extra attention, sprinkle in some magic, and make them extraordinary.
9. Originally the series was supposed to include many more different kinds of lighting. Daniel Mercandante wanted to work with lasers, reflections on water, strobe lites, etc. However, when he saw the results of his first picture with the custom “rainbow rig” he decided that that was enough. After all — the simpler something is, the better it is. Less is more.
10. Rainbow Road is an outlet for Daniel. It is a way for him to experiment, to be out in the nature when it’s dark and quiet, to think, and to find magic in places where it seems no magic could possibly exist.
11. In some of his later photos in the series, Rainbow Road begins to play with human subjects and “life”. Mercandantes says that in future photos he would like to include more people and perhaps some animal. He wants to show that the road isn’t just a road, it’s a path and there are creatures who might want to follow it.
12. As mentioned before, his main job is in advertising. Together with his wife they are The Mercadantes — two creatives bringing magic to brand identities.
13. The initial push for Daniel to start working on this series came after he moved from California to Connecticut. He said that after sunny California, Connecticut seemed very bleak and colorless. So, he decided to fix the problem in the most creative way possible.