In Stephen McMennamy’s world, forklifts pick up meatballs, crane trucks scoop out icecream, and monster trucks have donuts for wheels. In his surreal #ComboPhotos series, the Atlanta-based ad agency creative director merges two photographs, cleverly juxtaposing them to create unexpected and hilarious situations.
Is there a message behind #ComboPhotos?
No real message, other than it’s fun to look at the world a little differently.
So, how did you come up with the idea to mash up photographs?
Initially, my curiosity was piqued by photo apps that enable you to post multiple photos at once, specifically on Instagram. I’d seen a few people post photo collages with no seam (or removing the border) and I really appreciated the clean nature of that aesthetic. From there I started playing around with that same effect, but one time in particular I tried connecting images for a more fluid effect. From there I started consciously looking around for objects I could merge together.
Tell us about the process in cleverly merging these images?
In the beginning I only used my iPhone and an app called PicFrame. That was fine early on, but people started inquiring about purchasing images or possibly putting a book together, so I decided I needed to move away from an all mobile approach and improve the quality and execution of the images. That said, I still use my iPhone on occasion, and I really like putting everything together in the Layout app. I also have a drone that I use when I need a bird’s-eye view.
Your series has gone viral. What has been the reaction to your work?
For the most part it’s been very positive. I get a lot of encouragement in the comments on my Instagram feed. There’s a lot of variation in the responses on what people’s favorites are. I’m just glad everyone can have one or two that they like.