PHLEARN MagazineThis Photographer Creates Scenes That Defy Reality But Look So Real: Erik Johansson’s Surrealism

This Photographer Creates Scenes That Defy Reality But Look So Real: Erik Johansson’s Surrealism

From hanging the moon to an inside out cabin in the woods, the images of Swedish surrealist photographer Erik Johansson are absolutely beautiful and mind-boggling. We recently had the chance to chat with Erik about his work and how he captures the impossible.

What’s the one quote that always fires you up?

EJ: “We’re only limited by our imagination.”

Do you have any particular habits that are a part of how you begin your creative process?

EJ: I try to look at things around me, trying to make a connection between things in an unexpected way. It’s usually a pretty long process before I decide to bring an idea to life but that’s how it starts.

What do you do when you hit a wall during your creative process?

EJ: I do something completely different; take a walk, go outside, watch a movie. I think it’s pretty hard to force creativity, it comes and goes for everyone.

What’s your favorite photo you’ve ever captured and why?

EJ: It’s hard to say, I think it’s yet to come. But I usually like the ones I’m working on at the moment. If I would have to pick a favorite, I kind of like Soundscapes or The Architect.

What book would you recommend any creative person read?

EJ: Children’s books! With lots of illustrations, I love them, and they can often go beyond common sense. I also really enjoy the books by Shaun Tan, especially The Arrival – a story without words.


You can view more of Erik’s work at his website. And, if you want to see what Erik carries in his gear bag, check this out.

Dane Johnson

Dane Johnson was the former Editor of PHLEARN Magazine, where he helped creatives share their stories. Dane currently is the co-founder of Clementine Coffee Roasters and he accepts most assertions of his hipster-ness and millennialism without flinching.

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