Eric Petersen's surreal illustrations take their cues from video games

3 September 2015

California-based illustrator Eric Petersen has a very stylised approach to his work and is influenced by instructional graphics and video games. This flatness and uniformity is seen throughout his pupil-less characters as they seemingly wander Eric’s digital-looking worlds shrouded in iridescent skies.

His images feel unnerving, as though we’re looking in on a virtual reality game and someone from above is manipulating these characters into odd pyramid-like formations or squeezing them into beige doorways. The texture in Eric’s surreal illustrations adds some edge and keeps them from looking too pristine. The uncertain limbo Eric has depicted has gained the attention of some big names with commissions from The Guardian, The New York Times Sunday Review and BuzzFeed News.


Eric Petersen: Look at the Results


Eric Petersen: Two families


Eric Petersen: Getting things done


Eric Petersen: Especially impressed


Eric Petersen: Obiously


Eric Petersen: We cause accidents


Eric Petersen: The wild

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About the Author

Rebecca Fulleylove

Rebecca Fulleylove is a freelance writer and editor specialising in art, design and culture. She is also senior writer at Creative Review, having previously worked at Elephant, Google Arts & Culture, and It’s Nice That.

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