Tag Archives: photography

Mobile photography as of late

I don’t market myself as a photographer or even claim to be one. But I do take tons of pictures all the time. Some of these make it into my surrealist photomontage art over at RSMITHINGS.com, but others I’m content to just share for fun with minor edits (also done 100% via iPhone, like my art). Here are a few from this year so far that have enjoyed positive reception over at my Instagram, Flickr, Tumblr and Pinterest presences.

Alpaca Time - Richard Smith

Alpaca Time – Richard Smith

New Art Park Downtown

New Art Park Downtown – Richard Smith

Dat Duck Doe

Dat Duck Doe – Richard Smith

Sunspots Original 1a

Sunspots Original 1a – Richard Smith (see the complete Sunspots here)

My cat, Zoe

Zoe May Be Part Teddy Bear – Richard Smith

What do you think? Do you take photos for use later or do you prefer to go with what’s there in the moment? Do you use your smartphone as a primary camera? Let us hear from you in the comments!

Masters of Photography Art Feature

Many thanks to Masters of Photography for featuring my art! The site regularly features many excellent artists with a great layout, too. Very honored!

Originally posted on Mírame y sé color:

Richard Smith explores unexpected interrelationships between everyday images through surrealist photomontage. Working with elements from nature, pedestrian objects, specially-commissioned photos, and scenes from his travels and neighborhood, he fuses these components into ethereal yet cohesive views that transcend their origins. A self-taught graphic artist with 20+ years of professional experience, Smith incorporates assimilated photographic techniques and modern photomanipulation approaches into his hand-craftedcompositions.

Smith has been recognized globally for his photomontage art, with his pieces being shared across several U.S. and international creative venues.

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Never More Than A Dream

This is a lyric from one of my favorite songs, “Sweeter Than Anything,” by PJ Harvey. It’s also the title of my most popular Pinterest board.

I love everything about the track — its ethereal, almost haunted atmosphere; its darkly timbred instrumentation; and of course Polly Jean’s smoldering, longing delivery. The Lordes and Lana Del Reys of today owe everything to Harvey (and Kate Bush, and Tori Amos… etc.) and this track illustrates exactly why.

nmtad02The line, “You were never more than a dream” appears near the end, as an intonation of understanding, right before Harvey sings the title. A perfect, gentle ending to a swirling story of longing and reflection.

So that’s why “Never More Than A Dream” seems to me the ideal collection of words as a title, befitting this Pinterest board I’ve been growing for some time. The images there are generally mysterious, vintage, artful, or fleeting in some way. This board also happens to be a repository for images I find just plain interesting. It’s the most active board I keep on Pinterest, and if you’re a fan of this blog (hey, you’ve read this far…), you will probably enjoy what’s there as well.

nmtad01What do you think? Are you active on Pinterest? Do you have any themed collections of images or music you keep coming back to or that resonate with others? Let us hear from you in the comments.

Moustache Magazine Interview

The Australian publication, Moustache Magazine, features a detailed interview with me on art and other topics, as well as a look at some of my recent creations. I’m very honored to be part of this site, since MM consistently has compelling posts on great artists like Man Ray and many other contemporary creators as part of its constant stream of of appealing visual content.

Surrealist Photomontage Extraordinaire: Richard Smith

| September 8, 2014


Words by Michelle Cha

RICHARD Smith is a self taught artist who creates the divinely freaky and macabre surrealist photomontages which will send you back to the time of The Blair Witch Project. The layering of different motifs, landscapes, and photo manipulation sends you in a dark spiral of which you want to keep going down in. A self taught artist, Richard has more than 20 years experience in graphic design work and his career is going from strength to strength. His images are internationally recognised and stands strong amongst the heavy load of photo manipulation artworks out there. He was more than happy to answer some of my burning questions.

MM: What have you been up to in the last month in terms of new artwork?

I’ve been making more of a conscious effort to go out and collect new photos for source material. Usually this takes place organically, but lately I’ve had good results when forcing myself to go out and make it happen. Sometimes, that’s just what you have to do to keep the creative process moving forward. I’ve also done more sketching for future projects and having fun with that, particularly on Instagram.

With over 20 years of experience as a graphic artist, what has been the biggest challenge for you so far?

The biggest challenge is the same as it has always been: staying motivated and putting forth the effort to continue growing in new ways. For me, discovering new apps, experimenting with themes in photomontage, and appreciating the work of others helps tremendously on this front.

The mind bending realities you create with photo manipulation is mesmerising and sometimes unsettling what causes you to take your work in this direction?

It happens quite naturally, really. I’ve always had a fascination with macabre or gothic-type imagery, and that comes out in my art. I often don’t intend a dark motif, although I can see how others have that interpretation.

What kind of photographic techniques do you employ the most? Are there any that you wish to explore further in your work?

I make extensive use of masking various layers and parts of images in creating my photomontages. It’s at the heart of what I create. I’ve dabbled in working with human forms, through some commissioned model shots, and that might be the next realm I would like to explore.


I was overjoyed to hear you are too a fan of Dali and Man Ray (personal favourites of mine) and I see the influences of these artists in your work. Could you explain your growth as an artist?

It all goes back to one central place of creativity. I’ve been a musician, writer, and visual artist, and the three are always blending. For example, as a musician I would be the one in the band who would create the flyers, exploring the visual element there. That’s how I got into graphic design. Now, most of my day job involves writing, but I have the photomontage medium as a visual outlet for my personal projects. I’ve also created plenty of photomontage work professionally, using elements in advertising campaigns, websites, and so on. So for me, growing as an artist is basically continuing to be inspired and continuing to express that, learning in many areas all along the way.

Photomontage plays a big role in your art. Do you stick to a particular process or experiment with different techniques?

I have a vocabulary of techniques that I regularly employ, the main one being masking via layers. I also experiment with negative reversals, vignetting, the occasional border, and a few other arcane techniques. My hero and ultimate inspiration, Jerry Uelsmann , has a similar take on this, stating there are things he does that are like trying to explain to someone how to tie a shoe without actually showing them. That’s about the best way to describe it I’ve ever heard.

Are there places you absolutely love to keep going back to capture images for your next piece?

Not so much places, but motifs seem to reappear like a cast of characters in my images. It’s quite unintentional, but I just find certain elements fascinating: clouds, eyes, hands, trees, etc. Those all sound so plain and simple, but they really are evocative to me. I particularly like taking these basic elements and incorporating their everyday sensibility as a crazy juxtaposition to something unexpected for a metaphoric surrealistic effect.

Do you have any big plans for future in terms of your art?

I have an idea for an app that will foster more interaction with my finished works, as well as give subscribers a glimpse into the process and a look at what is forthcoming. Until then, my website, RSMITHINGS.com, is the main area of expansion for my art.

If you could have three famous people (dead or alive) over dinner, who would it be?

If you ask me tomorrow, I will have a different answer, but today I would have to say Keith Richards, Jimi Hendrix, and David Lynch. Not only do I respect them as artists and identify with their creative drive, but I am sure they would have endless, fascinating stories.

What would you cook for them?

Spaghetti. No doubt. It’s a family-type meal that everybody likes, and, importantly, one I can actually cook.

Has there ever been a time when you questioned being an artist?

Professionally, sure. But I keep it in perspective — I’m blessed to have found professional bill-paying outlets for something that comes naturally to me, and that is a wonderful, wonderful thing.

What’s the worst decision you ever made?

I’m still alive, so it’s probably yet to come.


Could you describe your happiest moment?

I’m fortunate enough to say I can’t pick just one, really. I like to believe it’s yet to come as well.

For more on Richard’s super freaky and mind warping images visit his website.

Outstanding Modern Surrealism

Check out the inspiring creations of these seven modern surreal artists working in collage and photomontage

As a photomontage artist myself, I’m constantly scanning Flickr, Pinterest, Tumblr, Instagram and other sites for examples of inspiring work. Every so often, the work of a certain artist consistently demonstrates extraordinary talent and style — in a way that appeals to my fondness for surrealism. I’m a fan of a certain kind of art, and these creators absolutely blow me away with what they regularly produce. Have a look at their websites, seek them out on your favorite image-sharing network, buy their prints, and get inspired by their talent.

Dariusz Klimczak

Dariusz Klimczak - Timer

Website | Flickr

Antonio Mora

Antonio Mora - Beauty

Website | Pinterest

Sylvia Grav

Sylvia Grav - Universe Project

Website | Flickr

Tommy Ingberg

Tommy Ingberg - Will

Website | Tumblr

Sammy Slabbinck

Sammy Slabbinck - Do you remember

Website | Flickr

Bob May

Bob May - Triangulated

Website | Flickr

Jarek Kubicki

Jarek Kubicki - 60612


What do you think? Do you enjoy a certain kind of art? Are there visual artists you’ve discovered online or elsewhere that you’ve come to follow? Where do you go for visual inspiration? Let us hear from you in the comments.

UPDATE: The artists speak!


Only So Much To Say

Only So Much To Say - Richard Smith - rsmithings.com

Stream becomes portal. Tree becomes a mountain range. Leaf becomes Dalí’s mustache. Best viewed at full size.

This is a photomontage I created about a year ago, practically forgot about, then came back to appreciate more completely only later thanks to Pinterest. I remember it taking not very long to compose, and having all the elements come together serendipitously, which, for me, is my favorite manner. This one appears more abstract from a distance, so it doesn’t have the instant recognizabilitly, and therefore sudden popularity, of many of my other pieces — but the reward is there for those with an eye and desire for detail. The abstractedness gives way to a surrealist blending of natural scenes and forms, offering a rich level of intricacy not immediately apparent in a smaller view — which is just the way so much of our digital art world is at first blush on Instagram or many other image sharing destinations. And that’s the inspiration for the title: in the smaller format, there is only so much to say, just a limited amount, for a fleeting few seconds… while further exploration reveals so much more. Check out the originals at Flickr.

Originals at FlickrWhat do you think? Have you ever created something you thought was OK at the time only to come back later with a different appreciation? Do you regularly revisit art or music you’ve experienced in the past and come away with a new interpretation? Let us hear from you in the comments.

New Works: Surrealism From Nature

Until We Meet Again Come view the most recent works added to the RSMITHINGS.com portfolio of surreal photomontage creations. Three new pieces have just been added: “Until We Meet Again” (above), “Transitional,” and “Be The Butterfly” (below, respectively). Each came about only in the last few weeks or months, and rides along a theme of nature and mystery, incorporating elements from my local area. Links to source files also illustrate the creation process in these pieces. “Be The Butterfly” is even available for purchase for a limited time through Fine Art International. Transitional Be The Butterfly

What do you think? Have you created any art lately? Ever thought about selling your artwork? Have you ever discovered a favorite new artist online? Let us hear from you in the comments.