Toy plane photos by Varun Thota

All photos: Varun Thota

Photographer Varun Thota delves into majorly meta territory with his ongoing Instagram series featuring a strategically placed toy airplane.

At first glance, it appears that Thota is merely placing his hand against the sky as an actual airplane passes overhead. It's reminiscent of those clever optical photo tricks we've seen photographers execute many times before. However, this time around, Thota flips the concept by actually holding onto a small, physical object that only appears life-sized when silhouetted.

What really makes these photos stand out, though, are the surroundings that frame the airplane: Looming skyscrapers, winding staircases and stacks of shipping containers.

Check out Thota's Instagram for more of his beautiful work.

Toy plane photos by Varun Thota
Toy plane photos by Varun Thota
Toy plane photos by Varun Thota
Toy plane photos by Varun Thota
Toy plane photos by Varun Thota
Toy plane photos by Varun Thota
Toy plane photos by Varun Thota
Toy plane photos by Varun Thota
Toy plane photos by Varun Thota
Toy plane photos by Varun Thota
Toy plane photos by Varun Thota
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Catie Leary is a photo editor at Mother Nature Network. Follow her on Twitter and Google+.