This story is inspired by Chicken Soup for the Soul's Project Dad, a television series about the joy of fatherhood and family.
Most of us have run-of-the-mill photos to look back on our childhood years. But some people are lucky enough to have parents who can transform their childhood photos into something else entirely.
Amsterdam-based photographer Adrian Sommeling is one of these parents. He uses photo composition and digital manipulation to create amazing photos of his son. Sometimes, his son flies on a magic carpet. Other times, he's riding elephants in the jungle.
"Most of the people know me because of the composites I create with my son as the leading character," Sommeling wrote on his website. "Since he's is around 4 years old I put him in all kind of situations. Sometimes surreal, sometimes just like in reality. It wasn't my son that brought me the ideas for the composites, but by seeing him playing I remembered my own childhood. I remembered what made my laugh, sad or scared. So the images I made with him, aren't the wishes of my son, but visualizing my childhood."
Sommeling starts each image by taking a background photo. Then, he takes photos of the models, cuts them in Photoshop, and positions them on the background. He then hand-draws shadows to make the images look more realistic. Finally, he color corrects the image and voilà! His son is riding a bicycle that has the London Eye as a back wheel.
Sommeling shares his surreal images on his Instagram account, which has more than 26,000 followers. He also has a YouTube channel where he shares videos that show how he puts his magical images together.
We compiled some of our favorite photos from the series below.