“Erik Johansson is a young designer from Sweden with an exceptional talent for photo manipulation and retouching. His skills turn everyday scenes on their heads and are often humorous and clever, depicting impossible situations with extreme realism. Erik Johansson is also a talented photographer and shoots much of his own source material.”
My name is Erik Johansson, I was born in 1985 outside a small town called Götene in the middle of Sweden. I grew up on a farm with my parents and two younger sisters. For as long as I can remember I have liked drawing. Might have to do with my grandmother who did a lot of painting. Early I also got interested in computers, escaping to other worlds in computer games. At the age of 15 I got my first digital camera which opened up a new world. Being used to drawing it felt quite strange to be done after capturing a photo, it wasn’t the process of creating something in the same way. Having an interest in computers made it a quite natural step to start playing around with the photos and creating something that you couldn’t capture with the camera. It was mostly basic montages of family and friends not always that realistic but it was a great way of learning, learning by trying. It was a fun hobby but I never considered it as a profession. In 2005 I moved to Gothenburg to study Computer engineering at Chalmers University of Technology. During my time studying I took up my interest for retouch once again after a friend buying a DSLR. I was amazed by the quality of the pictures compared to compact cameras and I felt like I wanted to start doing montages again. In 2007 I bought my first DSLR and started doing more serious montages, similar to the ones I do today. I had a lot of ideas that I wanted to realize and I saw it as problem solving trying to make it as realistic as possible. After publishing some of my images online I started to get requests about commissioned work from some local advertisement agencies. I started out freelancing in parallel with my studies. I got more and more jobs and at the time I finished my studies with a master in Interaction Design I felt like I rather wanted to try the photography path which I’ve been doing ever since. Growing up on the Swedish countryside had a big impact on my visual style. A lot of the environments in my photos are captured near places I know, around my parent’s home where there are a lot of wide open landscapes and red houses.
Today I work full time as a professional photographer and retoucher currently residing in Norrköping with clients from both Sweden and abroad. Although the commissioned projects take up a lot of time my personal work is still my passion and something that I will never stop doing. My photos have appeared in magazines, blogs and books world wide. Working with companies such as Google, Microsoft, Ikea and Stratco
* with the expressed written consent of Erik Johansson