Elise Swopes is self-taught photographer and graphic designer has used her business savvy to spin influencer marketing on Instagram into a full-fledged career. Her ability to connect with an audience of millions by melding art with a message has opened up once-in-a-lifetime opportunities — like throwing out the first pitch at a Cubs game, or becoming a top-selling artist on SuperRare.
Her artistic process begins with expansive cityscapes taken while piloting drones, scaling skyscrapers, or hanging out of helicopters. She then transforms the original image, bringing photos to life with her fingers. Taking inspiration from Mother Nature, she uses water and light as a paintbrush; snow turns into speckles, street lamps become glowing orbs, and water droplets take on abstract forms as she edits on the go using an array of mobile apps.
Her most popular creations bring a fantastic magical realism to urban landscapes as she manipulates the everyday into something from another world. For a partnership with Method, she envisions Lake Michigan as a basin to wash your hands, the sun as a juicy slice of orange, and soap bubbles as a biosphere encapsulating a miniature city. Her signature giraffe brings a touch of whimsy to unexpected settings, including the surreal 3D animations she’s beginning to explore.
"Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss it, you will land among the stars." Made entirely with an iPhone, "Shoot for the Moon" is Elise Swopes' interpretation of personal evolution and the love we discover on the way.
To achieve stillness even at the center of a difficult situation or "eye" of a storm.
Ascending - Moving, going, or growing upward. While in her hometown Chicago, Elise Swopes captures this skyline on a misty morning with her iPhone in early 2018. Swopes transforms this photo in 2021 into a sci-fi fantasy by utilizing multiple apps specializing in graphic and motion design. For a decade, regardless of the limitations that mobile editing has dealt her, she continues to be the innovator of iPhone art.
Don’t wait for inspiration to strike; master your motivation or “momentum” by beginning where you are. As Newton’s First Law would state, “An object at rest stays at rest, and an object in motion stays in motion.”