Canadian artist Jason de Graaf creates hyperrealistic paintings that look more like carefully composed still-life photographs. We’ve featured many artist who can easily fool you into thinking their paintings are photos, but Jason de Graaf really is in a class of his own.
Just so you can understand how incredibly real de Graaf’s paintings look, you should know they’ve inspired the term “Magic Realism” as a description. The talented artist born in Montreal says: “My paintings are about staging an alternate reality, the illusion of verisimilitude on the painted surface, filtered so that it expresses my unique vision. Though my paintings may appear photoreal my goal is not to reproduce or document faithfully what I see one hundred percent, but also to create the illusion of depth and sense of presence not found in photographs.”
Jason de Graaf currently lives an works in Oka, Quebec, where he spends hours on end in total isolation, painstakingly working on his awe-inspiring masterpieces. He begins by photographing his still life compositions, then proceeds to draw them on the canvas with a pencil, before coloring them with acrylic paints. The whole process takes several days to complete, but the final results are always breathtaking. Jason mentions M.C. Escher and Johannes Vermeer as some of his artistic influences, but says it was watching a local illustrator paint with acrylics that really inspired him to develop his own unique style.
Photos © Jason de Graaf