influences ~ Simon Subrosa
Simon Subrosa is a Port Elizabeth-based photographer/digital artist whose work, while not directly influencing my own, deals with themes and motifs that I also find attractive or intriguing. Much of his art contains elements of religious imagery, sexual acts, post-apocalyptic environments and an almost painterly eye for digital manipulation.
His photographs are meticulously accented with an endless layering of textures, creating a mottled, aged effect most often associated with ancient oil paintings – or physical decay. Personally this effect is very thought-provoking for me as it lends to an image which would not look out of place in a two-hundred-year-old book; yet the subject matter would, of course, be decidedly out of place.
Most often Simon uses himself as a model in his art, which has led to him being accused of narcissism. Being lucky enough to know the guy in person I can assure you that this is untrue. There are many creative people out there that realise the most convenient model is oneself – for example, I would not have asked anyone to strip nude and lie on a cold tile floor in winter while contorting in various positions as if undergoing painful mutation just to take some reference photos (which is what I did — thank you, camera timer). In Simon’s case his inspiration often strikes on a whim, causing him to take a few pictures on the spur of the moment and begin manipulating them at some forsaken hour of the morning.
Despite this, female models and bodies appear frequently in his work; horned or tentacled or stained or crowned in thorns. I enjoy his use of halos and animal parts; both favourite tropes of mine to abuse, as well as his creative use of the female body.
All in all, Simon unfailingly creates work that I find extremely pleasing to my occipital lobe and continues to be a many-faceted source of inspiration. Find him at his blog, on Facebook or Shadowness.