We all know the power of Photoshop, you’ll regularly see the results of its use on magazine covers and in advertising campaigns. But it’s much more than just a tool for touching up and beautifying images, it’s also a powerful piece of software for creating artwork and manipulating photographs to bend them to the artists will.
We’ve tracked down a number of brilliant Photoshop artists and image manipulators from around the world to show you just how impressive the results can be. Will you believe your eyes?
The Lion Roar automobile
We’ve seen plenty of bonkers concept cars over the decades, but Swiss artist Frédéric Müller puts a fresh spin on these designs.
This masterful artist has taken classic car designs from the 1950s and 1960s and reimagined them with inspiration from nature. Now, these rides have taken on an animal like aesthetic, both inside and out as the vehicles not only look like animals but are also being driven by them. Our favourite is this Roar, a Ford-250 redesigned to fit the king of the jungle. The rest are pretty awesome too.
Phonsay Phothisomphane uses his artistic talents to craft images of our world and what it would look like if his imagination could bring things to life.
He regularly crafts dream-like scenes that are uploaded for all to enjoy on his Instagram account. This image of some tiny elephants drinking from an urban puddle is one of our favourites and a perfect example of the sort of things he creates.
Behind the scenes
Calob Castellon is fantastically talented and a clever bod too. He also likes to show what goes on behind the scenes of his work and regularly demonstrates how powerful props, positioning and a little Photoshopping can be.
The thing of dreams
Murat Akyol is a talented artist who turns his dreams into reality through the power of editing. The results are as wild and varied as you can imagine and his dreams must be pretty special.
Mathieu Stern is popular YouTuber with a flair for photography and filmmaking. During one shoot outing, he enrolled a Cosplayer in some levitation to capture some really awesome images. Some Photoshopping editing made the magic happen and you can see how here.
The woman in a bottle
An unusual twist on the message in the bottle, this work by Andric Ljubodrag appears to show a tiny woman floating on the sea in a clear bottle. She doesn’t look too happy about it either. We’d imagine the sea sickness is probably kicking in.
This is just one image of Andric Ljubodrag’s portfolio – a collection that’s utterly breath-taking. This self-taught artist has had a passion for photography since he was 15 years old and that passion has turned into a true talent. His art includes hyper-realistic imagery which mixes CGI with real-world photography. We’d highly recommend taking a look at his website to see more.
This photo, called “The key” is a digital self-portrait by Photoshop artist Alex Belko. It was selected for the commended category of the Sony World Photography Awards.
There’s an incredible amount of detail here and we wonder both what the artist was thinking when he created this work and whether he can see into our soul.
The last step
Another image shortlisted by the Sony World Photography Awards, “The last step” by Sergey Dibtsev is an insight into misery and loss. A woman in peril, a heart-broken man in deep contemplation and a helicopter searching the land below for something yet unknown.
Dark and moving, the photo before us tells a tale of woe and misery and yet does so with incredible beauty and detail.
“Comatose red” by Iranian Photoshop artist Milad Safabakhsh reached the commended category of the Sony World Photography Awards. This image is said to represent what it feels like to be in a coma with a tunnel of light calling you back to the world.
A solitary, down-trodden man holds a steady gaze at the light before him, but seems unable to move towards it, stuck deep within the grip of his unconsciousness.
This photo by Felicia Hodoroabă-Simion is part of a series of photo-montages where characters immerse themselves into the surrounding landscapes, by reflecting the view around them. Here the artist wants us to contemplate the way we perceive reality, the impact we have upon it and the influence it has on us.
Another fantastic piece recognised as such by the Sony World Photography Awards who selected it for their enhanced category.
Yong Lin Tan snapped this photo from the balcony of his flat during a particularly miserable downpour. He then struck upon the idea of manipulating the photo to speak to the surreal feeling of being trapped in a concrete jungle while searching for the freedom we all truly desire.
Fish park was shortlisted under the enhanced category of the Sony World Photography Awards.
A photographic commentary on society, tax and subsidies, this image by German artist Martin Seraphin is essentially a reflection of modern capitalism and the misery that accompanies it. “Subsidies” made it to the commended category of this year’s Sony World Photography Awards.
Superheroes through history
Photoshop artist Agan Harahap has created a wonderful series of images re-imagining historic events by injecting superheroes into iconic photos. Here, Batman replaces the Dwight D. Eisenhower, Supreme Commander of the Allied forces, seen addressing the troops before D-Day in 1944.
Other photographs in the series include images of Superman helping to liberate artwork stolen by the Nazis, Darth Vadar attending the Yalta conference and more.
The tiny toaster people
Staudinger + Franke is a famous photography studio based in Vienna who by day work in the advertising industry delivering clever and amazing photographic works for their clients.
Such work includes the likes of this dissected toaster which apparently shows tiny men beavering away on delivering a delicious toasty morsel to their owner.
Turkish artist Aydın Büyüktaş produced this image as part of a series of photographs called “Flatland” which seemingly show landscapes folding impossibly up on themselves.
The images are created using a lot of patience, Google Earth for scouting locations and careful drone flying to capture the original photo which is later manipulated. The result is a number of surprisingly mesmerising images that bend the mind as much as the land.
Czechoslovakian photographer and Photoshop artist Bara Prasilova, created a series of images for the Hasselbad Masters book volume 4 under the title “Evolve“. In this series, manipulated photographs of ladies with long hair are intended to represent the ties between human relationships and the threads of fear, emotion and worry we feel as people.
The emancipation of dissonance
Photo manipulator Charlie Davoli creates collages and montages from edits of photographs he took with his iPhone. The result is a series of surreal works that bend the imagination and allow us to question our reality.
This image is a collaboration between French photographer Jean-Yves Lemoigne and Photoshop artist Christopher Huet. This is an example of several photographs created for an advertising campaign that achieved several industry awards and garnered much praise.
The marshes of time
Russian artist Dmitry Rogozhkin, clearly has some talent when it comes to image manipulation. He has many magnificent works but this photo is possibly one of our favourites. A queue of women descend into the depths of marshes before them.
A simple and philosophical image about the passing of time as a girl turns into a woman and transitions into an old lady reaching out for father time.
The flying Whale
In this surreal photo, a Whale floats inexplicably across the sky tugging a tiny airship and a woman in a red dress on a journey above the clouds. Where they’re going, we’re left to wonder. Artist Erik Almas regularly uses his impressive talents to create works like this, where the impossible is made both possible and believable.
Full moon replacement service
The full moon replacement service is out in full force ensuring that only the very best moons are on display for our late-night snaps.
Erik Johansson has a gifted eye for nature and a talent for believable image manipulation. Various works of his feature beautiful shots of landscapes but blended with the unbelievable. He’s also happy to show the effort that goes into his work with behind the scenes videos on his website.
From Wales to London Underground
Rolling Welsh countryside interrupted by the unexpected lines of an underground entrance. With this photo, James Popsys imagines a wonderful world where the London Underground was hundreds of miles long. Rush hour has never looked so idyllic.
Edge of the World
Jati Putra Pratama, an Indonesian artist and graphic designer, takes photos of the world we live in and twists the laws of gravity and the angles of nature to present us with a new reality. Here, the edges of two worlds stand just a short distance apart or perhaps a sink hole has appeared in the middle of the ocean.
The piggy-backing model
Much like the Stock Photobomber we’ve featured previously, Kirby Jenner gets his kicks from injecting himself into other people’s photographs. More specifically, Kirby uses Photoshop to put himself into Instagram photos posted by Kendall Jenner, one of the biggest celebrities on Instagram.
“Kirby” is, of course, just a fictitious name for the equally fictitious character appearing in these photos, but we can’t help but admire the craftsmanship and hilarity of these images.
Heavy is the head that wears the crown
Martin de Pasquale is a Buenos Aires-based Photoshop artist with an eye for the surreal. His style mostly revolves around taking bland and otherwise non-descript photos of himself, then injecting unusual sights, colours and shapes into the imagery.
Here Martin can be seen dragging his own head close behind him.
Two worlds become one
Max Asabin, is an unusual specimen in the world of Photoshop manipulators. Not because of what he does or how he does it, nor the end result, but because he shows his workings to demonstrate how he creates the imagery.
Here we can see how two images are combined into one and transforming an otherwise basic portrait into something out of a fairy-tale.
Man’s giant best friend
Mitch Boyer took his love for his pet pooch and turned it into something scarily surreal. In a series of photographs, Mitch transforms his dachshund Vivian into a much bigger beast – a six-foot tall version of herself that dominates his photos.
The concept soon turned into something bigger when Mitch struck upon the idea of turning the photos into a children’s book to help kids be more comfortable with the thought of moving home. And so, “Vivian the dog moves to the big city” was born.
The ladies of gothic pop surrealism
Lithuanian artist, Natalie Shau uses a combination of digital painting, 3D programming and portrait photography to create dark and surreal images of women. Her distinctive images often mix historic styles with modern elements to create visual that resemble something described as “gothic pop surrealism”.
The world’s craziest rollercoaster
Robert Jahns is another one of those modern image manipulators who just uses photos taken on his phone to create surreal, intriguing, and mesmerising imagery.
With the use of a variety of apps and photographs snapped on his iPhone, this artist certainly has a flair for creating breath-taking and vertigo-inducing photos like this impossibly tall rollercoaster.
Out of place
What if things were out of place? That’s the theme to almost all of Robert Rickhoff’s work. Unexpected items appearing in places you’d never expect to see them in all sorts of hilarious, confusing and downright dangerous ways.
With an expert hand, this German Photoshop master makes us question whether what we’re seeing could really be true. It can’t be, but it looks so convincing. Though we do feel he missed a trick with his image by not setting the speed limit to 88mph.
The surreal life
Ukranian digital artist Stanislav Odyagailo not only takes incredible photographs, but he’s also a dab hand with Photoshop. Like a few others on this list, he’s a big fan of taking normal photos and turning them into mesmerising and surreal images.
Here we see a tree growing out of the back of the subject’s head.
Adverts with pizzaz
Chris Labrooy has an impressive portfolio of work that includes some snazzy and brilliantly colourful marketing masterpieces. One of which includes this fairly impressive project for Adidas kid’s trainers. There’s no denying he is a master of using CGI and 3D software tools to create breath-taking works that really stand out from the crowd.