It’s not easy to describe Jonathan Swinney’s style. His Instagram account (@jonathan_swinney) makes it clear that he is a graphic designer, but his artistic ability is not limited to design. He combines his own line art, paintings, drawings, and photography to create intricate graphic design works. As an artist, he likes to explore what he can do visually, taking each of his works in a different direction than the last. Most of the photos seen in his design work are taken by him, especially he texture-focused ones. He explained to me that he likes to photograph “something super close to get a weird result” and that he loves using color and texture. ’90s themes are a favorite of his, often making appearances in his work.
Swinney tells me that every piece he makes has a story. “I want the viewer to have their own version of it,” he tells me. The stories as he sees them come from his subconscious. His own personal dreams are a big inspiration for him. “I’ll have a dream, wake up, and write it down,” he tells me, going on to say that he then uses them in an effort to recreate them or they will inspire him to create something else. He will often go outside to find inspiration; to “look at odd shaped buildings, look for that weird shaped lamp.” His love of the mysterious shines through his use of scattered and layered images that people may not be able to identify. “I just love mysterious things that people don’t understand completely,” Swinney tells me. Take a look at his work yourself and create your own story.