Continuing on with the Superstars of Surrealism, here is Part Two as promised. (Read Part One here.) Today I am pleased to present the equally brilliant work of Wayman Stairs!
What is your name and where do you live?
Wayman: My name is Wayman Stairs and I was born and raised in the California’s Central Valley, currently residing in Madera, California.
|Follow The Yellow Brick Road © Wayman Stairs|
How did you get started creating mobile photographic art?
Wayman: I originally started editing photos after seeing one of my friend’s pictures she posted on Instagram. Shortly after signing up for my own Instagram account, I soon saw what others where able to create just using mobile apps. I wanted to see what I could do as well.
|Having Trouble Finding Time to Breathe © Wayman Stairs|
What device do you use?
Wayman: Most of my work started off as a picture taken with my iPhone 4 and then processed on my iPhone or my iPad 3. I just recently upgraded to an iPhone 5c and I’m very impressed with its camera compared to my old iPhone 4.
Do you have a traditional photography or art background?
Wayman: I have no formal art training, unless you count the one year of art I took in high school, which was taught by my football coach. We usually painted ceramics, played with modeling clay and talked football. I later took a photography class in college and wish I had paid more attention, but the only thing I truly recall was taking pictures of my car.
|Mass Media © Wayman Stairs|
Why surrealism? What sparked your passion for this art form?
Wayman: I really enjoy working with landscapes and transforming them into an alternate reality. Taking things that are real and tangible, then creating something unusual and fun by blurring and distorting the lines of reality, what I like to call a dreamscape. The main component in all of my creation process is to have fun and enjoy the process of creating.
I take inspiration from many things, whether it is a shadow on the ground or an interesting object on the shelf at the local Target store. Some of my biggest inspiration comes from artists such as Salvador Dali, Rene Magritte, Vladmir Kush and especially from my fellow mobile artists who continue to amaze and inspire me daily.
I plead ignorance concerning surrealistic art - is there always a deeper meaning behind it?
Wayman: There is not always a definite meaning behind my work, but I like to create pieces that can hopefully convey different meanings to different viewers. I like to use objects in my work from my day-to-day life that speak to me. These objects themselves may have different meanings to different people, such as clocks that appear to be melting away or light bulbs for heads. I have been attempting to purposefully use more symbolism in my work lately to try and evoke more thought from viewers.
|The Great Exodus © Wayman Stairs|
Do you plan your piece and shoot with that in mind, or do you shoot and then create from that point?
Wayman: I never plan out what I am shooting or what I am creating for that matter. Whether I am at work, out shopping or going for a bike ride, it is not out of the norm for me to stop whatever I am doing to take pictures of things that I find interesting (clocks, landscapes, lights, etc.) I put these photos in my personal stock library on my iPad, which later usually become “stamps” for me to use at will.
|Time Continuum © Wayman Stairs|
What apps do you use to create your work? Please describe a bit about your workflow or editing
Wayman: I like to take all my pictures with my iPhone. Then I transfer those photos to my iPad so that I can import them to any app I want to use to blur, distort and manipulate. I like to throw my headphones in and blast my music (dubstep, alternative rock or 90’s rock), zone out and create.
My work always starts off with the background image or landscape. I’ll import that background into ArtStudio where I like to blur the background or use the smudge tool to make it look painterly.
Next I will keep the image as previously stated or I may export that image so that I can open it with a secondary app, like Mextures, and change the texture of the soon to be background. From there it’s like solving a puzzle, putting the pieces together until I am happy with the result. I will import each image individually that I want to add to my landscape and use the erase function to erase the background, leaving only the object that I want to retain. From there I can distort, twist and manipulate the object however I see fit using the multiple tools that art studio has. Finally, I will add details like shadows, sharpening, adjust colors, etc. all with Art Studio. Then I export and post to my various social media sites.
Have you ever exhibited your work? If not, any plans to do so?
Wayman: I have shown my work at a couple of local Art Hop shows in Fresno. Brent (@Sleekmaus) actually introduced me to the owner of the studio Peter (@Zurartist) and I have had the pleasure of exhibiting alongside Brent and another favorite mobile artist CJ (@Alteregoz). I also have been asked to do a couple of RAW shows here in California and hope to do one of those soon, as well as a show with Brent in Visalia.
Do you sell your work? If so, where?
Wayman: I do sell my work at my local art shows or online at Redbubble. If anyone is interested in prints they may not see available on my Redbubble store they can also contact me through Instagram or e-mail me.
Is there anything else you'd like to add?
Wayman: Thank you Geri for this opportunity to be featured alongside one of my favorite iPhone artists and friends, Brent. I would also like to give a big thanks to my family for always supporting my art endeavors.
Geri's Note: The video below shows the creation of one of Wayman's pieces using ArtStudio.