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17 Apr 2020 | 4 MIN READ

These Surrealist Painters Will Inspire You to Create Awesome Photo Edits

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You can count on surrealist paintings to take you to an alternate dimension. Dreamy, colorful, and confusing, surrealist paintings provoke people’s thoughts. I remember when I was first introduced to The Treachery of Images by René Magritte – it blew my mind away. Photo editing is imitating famous art, and surrealist photos are becoming more popular by the day thanks to advanced photo editing tools, like double exposure, for instance. The work of these five surrealist painters serves as a great inspiration that will help you create photos that are out of this world.

Salvador Dalí

Surrealist Painters
Dream Caused by the Flight of a Bee Around a Pomegranate a Second Before Awakening by Salvador Dalí (1944)
Via Dali Paintings

Salvador Dalí was a Spanish artist and one of the most famous surrealist painters. He is known for creating renowned works of art such as The Persistence of Memory (1931), The Meditative Rose, and Galatea of the Spheres.

It is no secret that Dalí was eccentric, and his personality is reflected in his vibrant paintings that revolutionized art in the 20th century. Equipped with a vivid imagination that knows no horizons, Dalí beautifully recreated the mess that our minds carry. He took part in various art movements such as surrealism, cubism, dadaism, and modern art. Dalí definitely changed the way we see and interpret art.

His paintings always inspire me to pay attention to my dreams. You definitely need to check Dalí’s work out if you want some inspiration for your next photo edit.

Fun fact: Salvador Dalí designed the logo of Chupa Chups, the world’s favorite lollipop brand. Now, you’ll remember Dalí every time you buy one.

Remedios Varo

Gypsy and Harlequin by Remedios Varo (1947)
Via WikiArt

The Spanish painter Remedios Varo found inner balance in her art. Her paintings usually feature one individual in motion. The characters are always doing something: like a woman opening a chest and seeing her reflection (Encounter, 1959), or the Grim Reaper walking in a fruit market (The Pollution of the Water).

You don’t look at Varo’s paintings, you read them. Her work features mystical creatures and odd machines that trigger your analytical skills.

Seeing things from a different perspective is necessary to create photo edits that turn heads. So, I highly suggest you get to know Varo’s paintings because they will change the way you perceive art.

René Magritte

surrealist painters
Decalcomania by René Magritte (1996)
Via WikiArt

“Ceci n’est pas une pipe.” These five words on The Treachery of Images blew my mind the first time I read them. I asked myself if it was okay to write on a canvas. That’s the beauty of Rene Magritte’s work; it breaks the rules.

The Belgian surrealist artiste is known for his thought-provoking paintings, just like Dalí . His work, which carries philosophical messages, challenges viewers to think outside the box. I like to think of his paintings as concave mirrors that show the world from a different perspective.

Combining surrealism with conceptual art gave birth to a new art form that inspired world-renowned artists such as Andy Warhol, the father of pop art.

Giorgio de Chirico

The Song of Love by Giorgio de Chirico (1914)
Via Wikipedia

I included the Italian artist Giorgio de Chirico on the list for architecture enthusiasts. He developed the painting style scuola metafisicia (metaphysical art movement) that influenced surrealist artists such as Giorgio Morandi and Max Ernst. 

His paintings feature buildings, shadows, perspectives, and mannequins. The cities that he painted are empty and creepy. His work reminds of nightmares that we try to escape from, only to fail. 

If you’re planning on working with edits that contain buildings and towers, I suggest you check out Giorgio de Chirico’s work. Not only will you be inspired to brush up on your editing skills, but you will also feel motivated to make your viewers feel something when they see your work.

Alex Fishgoyt

Balance by Alex Fishgoyt
Via Pinterest

The Russian-American painter Alex Fishgoyt takes surrealism to a different level by using a lot of colors and imagery compared to other surrealist artists.

His paintings explore the “collective unconscious.” Although his work is very modern, they also include elements of mythology and ancient civilizations. 

I included Fishgoyt on the list to show you a modern take on surrealism, and learn more about the current art scene.

Finding sources of inspiration is important to be able to create art. You can take a stroll, try new drinks, or simply look at the works of other surrealist painters. Surrealism is moving from a canvas to a photo editor, ad I can’t wait to see how other forms of art will adapt to our digitized world.