If someone doesn’t tell you, they’d seem like ordinary photographs of places and scenes that one comes across every day or in picture postcards. Actually, these are incredibly crafted paintings of Darren Reid, a contemporary realist painter based in Derbyshire, England. His creations look so real they can easily be mistaken for photographs.
Reid is an expert artist, whose stunning photorealistic landscapes, tranquil seascapes, and bustling cityscapes simply mesmerize. The minute details look so life-like as to make the paintings incredibly realistic. Little wonder his stark country houses, well laid out industrial pavements, and even a simple electric pole, with wires hanging, look so real. The more you stare, the more they reveal.
Unlike most artists, who since childhood are destined to become career artists as adults, Reid picked up the paintbrush much later in life. For him, it was a welcome distraction from the suffering of his ailing pet dog that needed insulin injections every eight hours, making it impossible for him to leave home.
With lots of time on his hands, Reid started dabbling in acrylic paints. Without any training in art or any online tutorials, he started painting and improving his skills as he went along. This self-taught artist took up this pastime seriously and started devoting four days a week to it. The other three days, he worked in a day job. This continued for two years. What’s most surprising is he has risen to this stature in just three-and-a-half years from the time he first picked up the brush.
In an interview with Derbyshire Life, Reid says, “I’m shocked but also proud. What’s happened is already more than I ever dared dream about, so even if I don’t sell another canvas, painting has become my passion and I’ll be happy with that.” The reality is, his paintings sell like hotcakes and he has been selling his artwork to private collectors. Not only this, he’s now being represented by one of the world’s leading hyperrealist galleries, Plus One London.
Reid has a noticeable presence on the internet. On Instagram alone, he has a following of over 121,000 fans.