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Johannes Wessmark: Photorealism with Colored Pencil and Watercolor

This week’s featured artist is Johannes Wessmark, an exceptionally talented color pencil artist from Sweden.

It goes without saying that Johannes’ work would be considered photorealistic, or superrealistic, by any standard. In fact, this first piece entitled Cherry Jar is so perfectly drawn that not only do the cherries look delicious, but, well, so does the jar!

Cherry Jar by Johannes Wessmark

Those curved lines of black and white in the lid and lip of the jar—the ones which depict each reflection caused by the edges of the glass—are absolutely stunning. To create something like this takes a long-earned ability to really see what most people take for granted: little visual “pieces” that combine to form the whole.

Along with colored pencil, Johannes often uses watercolors in his artwork, blocking in some of the main colors before adding all the photorealistic details with pencils.

Maid Bay by Johannes Wessmark

Maid Bay, above, is once again an outstanding testament to Johannes’ skill. It’s obviously beautifully composed, with a strong diagonal running through the center of the piece, but I think my favorite part is the subtle and natural complementary colors found in the reddish-orange rocks and the blue water.

Coming in close second is the absolute wetness of the water. . . emphasized by the the way he’s drawn tiny wavelets lapping up against the larger rocks while covering the smaller ones with a glistening liquid layer.

I also can’t help but wonder how much time each one of these takes. . .

My guess is that an entire city scene like the one below would take weeks, not just days to complete, because every part of the painting which might normally be overlooked or left blurred in the background has to be rendered in perfect detail.

Ostgotagatan Stockholm by Johannes Wessmark

The result of that long process is quite unique, however, although you might not realize it at first. We’re very used to seeing this kind of perfection in photographs, but those are usually focused in on a certain distance (leaving everything else blurred) or visually compressed in order to keep everything that’s in sight, in focus.

SEE MORE: Realist artwork for sale at NUMA Gallery

Johannes isn’t under the limitations of a lens, which allows him to create a crystal-clear perspective of the scene that might be hard to find any other way, unless you’re standing right there in real life.

Incidentally, I’m doing it a disservice by showing it this small—you can view it much larger here at Johanness’ Imagekind gallery.

If you’d like to see more of Johannes Wessmark’s photorealistic colored pencil and watercolor art (as well as some airbrush and 3D art) visit that Imagekind gallery or check out his full website at www.JohannesWessmark.se. It’s in Swedish, but the artwork, of course, is universal. : )

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