Fire Extinguishers To Computers: Photographer Takes Apart Everyday Items In Stunning Series

Don't try this at home.

Ever wondered what the innards of a computer or a fire extinguisher looked like?

A photographer from Toronto, Canada, has created a stunning series of exploratory images that examine the internal workings of everyday objects.

Todd McLellan’s “Things Come Apart” project is composed of 29 pictures showing the mechanics of items that we use in our daily lives.

The scenes of disarray depicted in the photographs may look familiar to many who’ve tried their hand at DIY and been left with a broken pile of screws and wires.

However, McLellan is meticulous at documenting each and every nut and bolt and composing the final picture to show how the components fit together within the machine.

Items range from retro to the modern day, with a rotary dial telephone, a fire extinguisher and a defibrillator, a typewriter and even an old Apple Macintosh computer from the 1990s.

Not forgetting the Brownie Cresta camera, familiar to many a budding photographer in the 1950s.


The photographs have been rated by users on Imgur, with one commenter saying: “I am less impressed that they can take things apart than I am at the aesthetics of how they laid the pieces out.”

Another expressed the concerns of many when looking at the pictures, Nick Romel said: “As an engineer, I’ve always taken things apart to see how they work. But seeing all of these parts needing to be put back together makes me anxious as F.”

McLellan, who graduated from the Alberta College of Art and Design in 2002, was awarded the American Photography Annual Award in 2014.

Not only does he take pictures of mechanics, but portraits and landscapes, which he displays in his online portfolio, saying: “It all started from a Kindergarten finger-painting class and grew from there.”

The “Things Come Apart” series will be on display at an exhibition at the Upcountry History Museum in South Carolina in September.

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