Armed with an X-acto knife and a pair of tweezers, Korean artist Yoo Hyun carves intricate, highly realistic portraits of celebrities. His paper-cut portraits look like abstract designs from up-close, but at a distance, the thin slits reveal the faces of movie stars, world leaders, and musicians.
Hyun’s signature style consists of zig-zag patterns, but he doesn’t carve in straight lines. Instead, he varies the thickness of each strip, to create facial features and expressions. Each line specifically adds to the three-dimensional illusion. The negative spaces are see-through, so layering the portrait over a colored surface or pattern adds even more depth. He mostly chooses a black ink-splattered surface, but sometimes he uses bold colors like blue and red to illuminate the portraits.
Hyun regularly posts photos of his work on his Instagram account. Some of these pictures are blown up and tiled, allowing viewers to examine his brilliant masterpieces in detail.