PetaPixel

The Amazing Photo Manipulation Art of Erik Johansson

Here’s an awesome TED lecture in which digital artist Erik Johansson discusses creating realistic “photographs” of impossible scenes.

Erik Johansson creates realistic photos of impossible scenes — capturing ideas, not moments. In this witty how-to, the Photoshop wizard describes the principles he uses to make these fantastical scenarios come to life, while keeping them visually plausible.


Here’s a sampling of his work:

You can find more of Johansson’s work over on his website.


Image credits: Photographs by Erik Johansson


 
 
  • Kkevster

    I am more a fan photographic talent. 

  • http://www.arttyIV.com arttyIV

    Pretty awesome work. 

  • Ranzino

    “I felt that photography was more about being at the right place at the right time.  I felt anyone could do this.”  Yep.  That’s why everyone’s good at it.

  • Anonymous

     Man, the guy’s work is so important to the collective creative community that he garners a TED talk because of his work and you still can’t appreciate it. The Mona Lisa must be disappointing to you too, seeing as though it’s realism and not a real exercise of the creative abstract mind…

    Go shoot photos and learn about talent rather than talk about it.

  • http://www.arttyIV.com arttyIV

    Art it art. 

  • http://twitter.com/StyleQuotient Melo

    What’s impressive is not just the skill in post or the photographic ability, but the vision to conceptualize each scene and execute them this well.

    It’s the bringing to life of the original idea.  Nice work.

  • Killermotion

    Good for you. Who cares what your a fan of?

  • Mantis

    It’s a shame that idiotic posts like this in regards to some amazing art have to be right at the top of the comments section.

  • Anonymous

    Been following his work for years now, great to see him get this far in his career. All the best from your Finnish neighbor!

  • http://twitter.com/THEGREATZEEE THE GREAT ZEEE

    … everything is out there, and the only thing that limits us…is how well we know how to use photoshop. ha

  • http://www.monoworld.org/ Michael

    I get it! Here’s the formula: M. C. Escher + Tim Burton = Erik Johansson
    I like it!

  • Franz

     Chill out guys he just states that he is a fan (a tool so to say). Damn racists.

  • Jever

    To me this is more illustration that photography, and that’s a line that seems to be getting blurred more and more these days.  More’s the pity, because I think each deserves a category in its own right.  Photoshop is a wonderful tool with which a talented hand can create wonderful visions, but what we see here is hardly representative of reality, rather the artists’ personal vision.  It’s fine and interesting work but, to me, it’s not photography.  Opinions may vary.
    ALL art, in it’s varying forms, is subjective.  Jumping down the original poster’s throat just because his perspective dares to differ from yours only highlights your own intolerance for the opinion of others.

  • Anonymous

     The op talks about photographic talent. Look at the images. They aren’t just illustrations, there was serious work put into each one before the image was ever captured, much less manipulated. Just because this photographer uses his photos for illustrative purposes in post is no reason to detract from his photographic talent during the capture.

  • Jever

    @ChristianRudman – way to miss the point I was trying to make completely.  That’s YOUR opinion, and your welcome to it.  I  however tend to disagree based on my personal beliefs on what makes a ‘photograph’.  Clearly if someone dares stray outside your personal definition of what does and doesn’t constitute photography it’s an issue for you.  Perhaps you should try getting over yourself a bit and accepting that some people may actually dare to differ from you.  Oh no, that would make them ‘silly’ and ‘self-righteous’.  Point the finger back at yourself and you may just have hit the nail on the head.

    In respect to photographic talent.  Again, subjective, but to my eye in shots 1, 2, 3 and 4 I see no great talent at all.  I see talent in merging a series of mediocre images.  Sure, careful consideration went in to angle, ensuring lighting was consistent and all the other factors that ensured they could be merged successfully into a good composite.  The sum is better than all of the parts and it’s the parts I see when I look at these pictures.  In short, there’s far more PS than photographic expertise taking place here.  Good as they may be as a finished piece of art.

  • http://twitter.com/dec200269 Dave C

    Wonderful works, very inspiring, thank you for sharing.

  • http://twitter.com/dec200269 Dave C

    Wonderful works, very inspiring, thank you for sharing.

  • http://twitter.com/dec200269 Dave C

    Wonderful works, very inspiring, thank you for sharing.

  • http://twitter.com/dec200269 Dave C

    Wonderful works, very inspiring, thank you for sharing.

  • http://twitter.com/dec200269 Dave C

    Wonderful works, very inspiring, thank you for sharing.

  • Anonymous

    Everyone’s entitled to their opinion, and that’s why I voiced mine. You don’t have to like it, just like I don’t agree with your view, but you have to admit that considered photographic shots were involved in this mixed media process. I see you think through your views rather than just claim them, but letting this person know (just like I am doing with you right now) in so many words that they might be wrong about something is the whole point of having opinions in the first place. Just because you don’t like my delivery doesn’t place your views over mine or vice-versa. But, it does mean I get to debate with you some more! This is so much funnn.

  • Mugeatis

    Good imagination,congratulations!

  • Guest

    wtf?

  • Rekha Raj

    seriously awsemoe very scarely and also but memorable