SA artist's digital works explore the surreal elements of emotion

Dreamlike landscapes and portraits make up Richard Davis' body of work.

Johannesburg-based digital artist and photographer Richard Davis created a body of work that seeks to capture the surreal nature of the human predicament and how our emotions change our perceptions. His collection of dream-like images has been created to explore the literal interpretations of an emotional state of mind.

“I create artworks which explore the human predicament depicting the varied range of our emotions, perceptions based on confirmation bias, the descriptive language and expressions used and how people interact with the world around them based on these emotions and perceptions,” says the artist.

Taking a serious approach to his art in 2000, Davis’ work has been featured in magazines, displayed as set dressings for the television series, “The Following” and displayed in a gallery exhibition in Soho, New York City.

To create his pieces, Davis uses a number of digital tools while drawing inspiration from within himself and the environment: “The most prominent and striking ideas usually take root over a few weeks and once a concept has formed the actual process begins,” he explains.

Davis begins by shaping the general forms of composition in Photoshop, blending each element for the concept. “After I build everything as I want, my final touch focuses on the details. Throughout the process, I analyse the results to make sure I get the right result.”

He is motivated by the desire to seek new perspectives, new perspectives, new answers or solutions to his artistic interests.

I’m trying to create something vivid, insightful, and altogether engaging on an emotional level.

See more of Davis' work here

Exploring the literal interpretation of the familiar idiomatic expression, “Sometimes It’s as if I’m speaking to to a brick wall”.
Capturing the emotion of freedom found after confinement or addiction.
This artwork was created in response to our government's decision to lift the moratorium on shale gas exploration in the Karoo. Yes, there are economic benefits from Fracking but what of the long-term effects on the environment, ground water and the air quality?
What is death but an accumulation of knowledge put to rest.
Any object can be seen as something else given the right perspective. I attempted to capture visual misperceptions of an everyday object appearing as something completely different. In this instance, fairly common items have been used to create the effect of lava.
How then should one envision humanity’s place in the natural world?