Ronen Goldman: Making it Out Alive

Feb 26, 2016
Photographer Spotlight

Ronen Goldman makes his dreams come to life, and he does it on a regular basis. With his photography series, “The Surrealistic Pillow Project,” Ronen takes fragments of his dreams and turns them into realized, surreal images. For Ronen’s latest surreal image, “Making it Out Alive,” he made a start-to-finish behind-the-scenes video so we can see his idea transform from his mind to the final photo. 

This image has a lot of meaning to me. My wife and I recently recovered from quite a traumatic period in our lives. After this difficult time, I felt that she emerged from that shipwreck of an ordeal as a real hero, while I still feel bogged down, drowning and engulfed by jellyfish, not completely out yet. Creating this image is my way of illustrating the situation in a way I can share with others.

Here's the sketch that Ronen started off with:

Ronen says one of the most important parts of the project for him was the jellyfish. He wanted them to really look realistic. Lucky for him, he met up with effects artist Or Sapir, who helped conceive of their construction. They wound up using a type silicone that took over a week to create, and Ronen was delighted with the final look. You’ll see more of these jiggly guys in the full video.

For the past few months, Ronen has been working as an advisor to Enlight, a photography editing app for the iphone. He helps out with their social and visual content, so they decided together that this would be a create project to chronicle. They liked the idea of showing how Ronen’s visions came to life, and how he uses the Enlight app to share the image.

When I watch behind-the-scenes videos like this it really helps me learn new techniques and get excited about photography and its possibilities. I hope this video has the same effect.

We sure think so. Check it out for yourself: 

Fun fact from the video: the shoot took place in the middle of winter. The water was freezing cold, but the models and Ronen had to bite the bullet and dive in. Ronen didn’t realize beforehand that in order to get the perfect shot, he’d have to get in the water himself, so he didn’t even have a change of clothes. Here's that final image:

I'm really excited that the final image came out even better than I imagined it. There were so many curve balls thrown at us when creating it, that I'm extra happy with how it came out.

Be sure to check out more of Ronen’s Surrealistic Pillow project at!

Tags: conceptual photography enlight making it out alive ronen goldman