You know a work of art is really some­thing else if it requires a double-take. And that’s exactly what you get with pho­to­graph­er and art dir­ect­or, Vanessa McKeown’s quirky and col­our­ful images, fea­tur­ing every­day items with an extraordin­ary twist. Lit­er­al ‘sponge’ cakes and bal­loon-based fruit and veg are just a small frac­tion of Vanessa’s cre­at­ive vis­ion.

You have a really unique, instantly recog­nis­able style. How did you devel­op that?

—I think it’s developed from con­tinu­ing to do things. I tried a lot of anim­a­tion and film in a sim­il­ar style and decided to start shoot­ing it as still images instead. It’s taken a few years to get to this point, though.

You have a real knack for put­ting an unusu­al spin on every­day objects – how did that come about?

—I star­ted tak­ing pic­tures of still life ini­tially and I felt they seemed a bit empty. I decided to give them more thought by bring­ing them to life. Giv­ing them this edge means they have more of a reas­on exist.

What’s your favour­ite piece of work or image you’ve cre­ated so far?

—I do really love the bal­loon ones but I also love the sponge cakes!

All of your work is clev­er and obvi­ously a product of a wild ima­gin­a­tion paired with a genu­ine eye for design. Where do you find inspir­a­tion for your work?

—I think it comes from every­where, there isn’t one thing I can pin­point. Some­times just work­ing is good inspir­a­tion because it gets the mind in focus!

You have a back­ground in graph­ic design and film as well as pho­to­graphy, with so many strings to your artist­ic bow, what can we expect to see from you next?

—Oh, I’m not sure! I think I might try ten-second films soon, but I think I’m going to try and see where I can take my pho­to­graphy first.

If you could work with any one oth­er cre­at­ive in a col­lab­or­a­tion, who would you want to work with and why?

—I really love Lotta Niemin­en. I look at her work and think how did she do that? Look­ing at her pieces just makes me want to do more work. I guess my reas­on for want­ing to work with her is because she has a good eye for detail and I think we could col­lab­or­ate well togeth­er, we have a mutu­al love of col­our.