Because we've been spending so much time trying to find a cure for cancer and travelling through time we haven't done an artist profile in a little while. But when we came across the work of Swedish image maestro Erik Johansson recently we knew it was time to rectify the situation. We hope you're eyeballs are hungry because they are in for a visual feast.
We were lucky enough to throw some questions at Erik. Here is what he had to say....
EC: Explain a bit about what you do.
EJ: My name is Erik Johansson, I am a freelance photographer and retoucher living in Norrköping, Sweden. I do both personal projects and commercial work. For me photography is just a way to collect material to realise the ideas in my mind. I get inspired by things around me in my daily life and all kinds of things I see, I always try to make sketches of the ideas I get. Every new project is a new challenge and my goal is to realize them as realistic as possible.
EC: How did you get started with your art and what ideally would you like to achieve with it?
EJ: I got my first digital camera when I was 15, that is about 10 years ago. I have always been drawing as a way of expressing myself, but with the digital camera I started to modify the photos. It felt like a natural step for me but it was mostly basic stuff of my friends and family. That's how it all started. I have studied computer engineering and never really thought that the photography and retouch would be more than a hobby. But today I'm working full time as a freelance.
EC: Explain a little of your creative process.
EJ: When I have come up with an idea the planing starts. Is this a good idea? Is it possible to realise? What do I need in terms of environment and people? This is actually the hardest part since the more you plan the better the end result will become. When I have found everything I need I take the photos I need and put it together in my computer. I have learned that ideas have to grow and take time, this process from idea to final result is usually between one week to several months.
EC: Do you have specific inspirations? i.e. people, literature, film, philosophy, dreams etc?
EJ: I think I get more inspiration from drawings and paintings than photos, e.g. Dali, Rob Gonsalves, Escher, Shaun Tan. But I also get inspiration from things in my daily life and I always make sure to make a note or quick sketch each time an idea pops up. Music has always been an important part of inspiration too.
EC: Some of your images are quite surreal, as if you’re taking the every-day world and creating an alternate reality. Is this how you see your images?
EJ: I don't really deliberately try to create a specific mode or world, but somehow this is what it becomes.
For more of Erik's work you can jimmy on over to his website - www.alltelleringet.com
EC - Style is a Language