By Jack Williams
This punny artist playfully combines two seemingly random images, creating an alternative meaning that leaves viewers wondering what his amusing play on words could be.
Take, for example, Randy Lewis’ works of a fly with wings made from butter (“butterfly), a potato sitting on a sofa (a “couch potato”), or a yam holding a bouquet of flowers (a “sweet potato”).
While some of the answers may seem obvious afterwards, others, Randy said, have left people scratching their heads.
They are part of the This and That series, a popular passion project that designer Randy, 33, puts down to a childhood passion for compound words.
The California-based designer would, in his youth, sketch what such compound words could look like – a form of amusement that he has carried into later life.
Randy said: “The series was unexpectedly started a few years ago as I gazed upon a palm tree.
“The palm leaves reminded me of a carrot top, so I snapped some quick photos, Photoshop, and “Carrot or Palm Tree?” was born.”
As well as the pun-themed images in this series, Randy also introduces a mish-mash of images that simply look like one element has been replaced, like his palm tree image.
For example, Randy has brought to life an umbrella neck using the head of a swan; a box of fried containing yellow crayons; and a mosquito that’s part of a syringe.
The designer plans to continue adding to the series, which he updates one or twice a week.
Some images, he said, are sourced from the likes of stock libraries; whereas for other works – including some of his most creative work with goldfish – Randy photographs all of the elements himself.
He said: “Creativity is something you can’t really force, so the struggle to always discover new original ideas can be challenging.
“This is a personal passion project so I’m able to experiment, take risks, fail, and make discoveries.
“This freedom allows me to draw inspiration, found in everyday life.
“From animals to objects – I often ponder daily what easily identifiable items would look like, if combined together into one.
“The images I end up using depends on trial and error.
“I enjoy the emotions you can evoke using strictly design, without words.
“The double take is also enjoyable.
“In that split second you glimpse a design for the first time as your brain instantly convinces you what you see, only to learn what you thought you saw, was not so.
“If you can make someone smile or laugh through design, I think that’s pretty cool. Who couldn’t use more of those?”