Mind-Blowing Painted Illusions by Oleg Shuplyak

Oleg Shuplyak is a talented Ukrainian oil painter who uses hidden images to turn his artworks into mind-blowing optical illusions.

Born on September 23, 1967, in the Ternopol region of the Ukraine, Oleg Shuplyak studied architecture at the Lviv Polytechnic Institute, but his passion was always painting. Although he creates all kinds of beautiful paintings, it was his talent of transforming his works of art into optical illusions that really caught my eye. Objects and characters in his paintings are aligned perfectly in such a way they create outstanding illusions that are easily spotted. I find his art fascinating, and having seen some pretty awesome optical illusions in the past, I have to say his works are some of the best I’ve ever come across.

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Graffiti Masters Turn Side of Building into Awe-Inspiring Masterpiece

Montreal-based graffiti crew A’shop has managed to transform the bland side of a building located  at the corner of Madison and Sherbrooke Street West into an amazing piece of art.

Graffiti artists Fluke, Guillaume Lapointe, Antonin Lambert, DoDo Ose and Bruno Rathbone spent two weeks researching the project and gathering tools they needed, and then worked 16 days from dawn till dusk in order to complete the incredible five-storey mural. Known as the “N.D.G. Project” (after its location), the giant graffiti artwork is a modern take on “Our Lady of Grace” and was inspired by the work of Czech art nouveau painter Alphinse Mucha. To finish their masterpiece, the boys from A’shop used over 500 cans of paint, in over 50 different colors. Good thing the art project was sponsored by the city of Montreal, or that could have caused a serious dent in their budget.

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ArKay – The World’s First Alcohol-Free Whiskey

American company ArKay Beverages has created the world’s first alcohol-free whiskey and claims their product tastes just like the real thing.

I’m the kind of guy who doesn’t get why anyone would want to drink alcohol-free beer, so ArKay’s whiskey-flavored drink is something I will probably never understand. I mean who drinks whiskey simply because they love the taste? Sure it has certain hints, but unless it’s mixed with Red Bull, Coke, or mixed in a Long island cocktail, I don’t get it. Of course I’m not a connaisseur, but I’m sure even they find the idea of an alcohol-free whiskey a little unusual.

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Sweetest-Ever Music Video Was Made with 288,000 Jelly Beans

Director Greg Jardin spent the last two years making a music video for singer/songwriter Kina Grannis using a whopping 288,000 jelly beans. I think it’s fair to say this is literally sweetest video ever created.

Inspired by the jelly bean art of artists like Roger Rocha, Malcolm West and Kristen Cumings, Greg Jardin thought it would be a good idea to make a music video almost entirely out of jelly beans, for Kina Grannis‘ song “In Your Arms”. The young singer thought it was an amazing idea, although she did have some problems even imagining how it was going to look like, so the ambitious director got to work. He had a friend, who is an illustrator, draw up  all the concept art and email it to him, and he turned into an animatic. There were over 2,300 frames he had to recreate out of differently colored jelly beans.

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Japan’s Pig Rodeo – Animal Cruelty or Just Plain Fun?

Although pigs aren’t exactly known for their speed and stamina, the people of Mikame, in Japan’s Ehime Prefecture seem to think they’re the perfect animals to ride.

Ehime Prefecture has been known as Japan’s pork production capital for a long time, and 25 years ago someone thought it would be a great idea to celebrate by riding hogs in a unique event known as Pig Rodeo. Part of the annual Seiyo City Mikame Summer Festival, the crazy event has been a popular tourist attraction, but to most of the western world it remained a mystery until 2009, when a YouTube video was picked up by a number of media outlets. There was a lot of controversy surrounding pig rodeo, at the time, and someone even started an online petition to get it banned, but in the last two years there were hardly any stories written on the subject.

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10 Coolest Finds of the Week #16

Hamster Drag Racing (YouTube)

Man Builds Crazy Bike Just for Fun (Orange News)

Couple Share Home with 14 Skunks (The Sun)

10 Creepiest Abandoned Water Parks on Earth (Environmental Graffiti)

10 Unusual and Unbelievable Underground Places (Oddee)

Marble Village of Dhee Ayn (Atlas Obscura)

First Manned Multicopter Flight (The Escapist)

Heterochromia in Cats (Environmental Graffiti)

Prosthetic Noses, Red Wigs and Whiteface – American Characters in Chinese Movies (Asia Obscura)

These Shoes Aren’t Made for Walking (Daily Mail)

7-Year-Old Girl Forced Dance in Inappropriate Attire to Support Her Family

During the day, Huang Doudou looks like a normal 7-year-old girl, but seeing her perform at her night job, wearing excessive makeup and dressed inappropriately, you’d think she was twice her age.

Huang Doudou, a primary school student from Urumqi, China, has recently caused controversy in Chinese media, after her shocking story became viral. The 7-year-old lives with her parents in a room just 12-square-meters in size. Her mother has a crippled left leg and tries to support the family by peddling in the streets and babysitting, while her father, who suffers from a serious stomach condition, can only do light jobs. They barely managed to make ends meet every month, so young Huang Doudou stepped in and decided to use her dance skills to contribute to the family budget and pay for her dancing tuition.

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Fan Turns His Home into Altar for Bollywood Star

Shah Rukh Khan is one of the most popular actors in the world, but no one’s a bigger fan of the Bollywood actor than Vishal Singh, a man who has turned his home into an altar to the movie star.

The 38-year-old businessman who runs a homeopathic medicine business in Lucknow, India says there’s nothing he wouldn’t do to make Shah Rukh Kahn happy. So far he’s covered every surface in his house and even his car with photos of the Bollywood icon, changed his name to Vishahrukh Khan, and even spent his honeymoon in front of the actor’s mansion in Mumbai, hoping to catch a glimpse of his idol. Although he says no one cam be like Shah Rukh, he wanted to bear his name and even gave his children names related to the Indian actor. His son is named like Kahn’s child, Aryan, and his daughter Simran, is named after one of the female leads in one of the actor’s biggest movies, Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge.

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Ukraine’s Amazing Underwater Painters

You can’t rush art! That’s what they say anyway, but that rule doesn’t apply to the members of Ukraine’s national school of underwater painting, who have just 40 minutes of oxygen to complete their masterpieces.

Painting usually takes patience and comfort to produce memorable works of art, but the artists painting in the depths of the Black Sea can’t really afford to take their time, because that would mean risking their lives. The unusual group of painters, all certified divers, work at depths of between 2 and 20 meters, and claim what they do is just like regular painting, only their canvases are covered with a waterproof adhesive coating, before they plunge into the sea. Although they decide at what depth they want to work, underwater painters have to be very careful because the deeper they go the more color is lost, and on the surface colors look totally different. Red, for example, turns brown or even black.

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Paga Village – Where Crocs and Men Live in Perfect Harmony

The small village of Paga, in Ghana, defies the laws of nature as local population bathes and swims in the same nearby pond as over 100 deadly crocodiles. So far none of the villagers have ever been harmed by the reptiles.

Something very weird is definitely going on in the African village of Paga, where people live happily among crocodiles who don’t seem to mind their company, either. It is believed everyone in the village has a corresponding crocodile in Bolgatanga, and according to reliable sources the deaths of important village personalities have coincided with the death of a crocodile. Because they believe crocs are the souls of their village relatives, people never hurt or kill the sacred animals. That’s all very nice, but what’s really bizarre is the crocodiles themselves seem to have developed a strong relationship with their human neighbors and never cause them any harm. Young men go knee-deep into the water to fish, right next to the some of the world’s largest crocodiles, and always come out unharmed.

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Smoking Tiger Rug Made from 500,000 Cigarettes

Xu Bing, one of China’s most renown contemporary artists, has created a unique tiger rug from 500,000 cigarettes. And it looks smoking.

A real tiger rug is a rare thing to have, but rarer still is one made from hundreds of thousands of tobacco cigarettes. Weighing an impressive 440 pounds, this cigarette rug has to be one of the largest tobacco-inspired art installations in history. It was created by a group of artists by stacking hundreds of thousands of cigarettes on their ends, in the shape of a tiger pattern rug. The unique work of art will be on display at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, through December 4, 2011, and will be moved to the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, in January 2012.

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Couple Get Married in Cemetery, on Halloween Night

Halloween is not exactly known as a romantic holiday, but for one Albuquerque couple it was the perfect time to tie the knot in a cemetery.

Officials from the Fairview Memorial Park Cemetery admitted they get all kinds of bizarre requests, but this was the first time someone asked them to use the venues for a wedding on Halloween night. Scott Rivera and his girlfriend Kiera love Halloween because “yiu can be totally crazy and no one looks at you strange” so they decided it was the perfect time to have their special wedding. As the sun cast its last rays on the gravestones of the cemetery, the couple made their entrance dressed in custom-made medieval costumes, along with friends and family, who also wore their own Halloween outfits.

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College Girl Saves Grocery Money by Digging through Trash

23-year-old Ashley Fields is just one of the thousands of New Yorkers who discovered dumpster-diving for food can really help them save serious cash. Ashley’s not homeless or poor, she’s just doing it because it’s easy.

Fields, a theater-major from Saint Louis, is still in school but also has a theater job that pays between $500 and $600 per week, so the money she saves by eating trash-can food really comes in handy. And she doesn’t even have to get her hands dirty since most of the left-over still packaged food is separated from the rest of the trash, in plastic bags. So while other people pay serious cash for an expensive Starbucks salad, Fields gets the same thing, only leftover, for free. Stores like Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods simply can’t sell their food if it’s left over at the end of the day, so they throw it out, even if it’s not spoiled. A lot of these products have a three-day expiration date, so Ashley knows she can just take anything home and feast on it of fill her fridge. “You never know what’s going to be in these bags on any given night,” Fields says, “like tonight, I found a bunch of great, healthy breakfast sandwiches. They’re totally fine.”

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Meticulously Detailed Drawings Made with Graphite and Chalk

Paul Cadden is a Scottish-born hyperrealist artist who creates painfully realistic artworks using only graphite and chalk.

I’ve posted some pretty realistic drawings in the past, like Rajacenna’s detailed celebrity portraits, Juan Francisco Casas’ photo-like ballpoint pen drawings, or Paul Lung’s pencil artworks, but the pieces you’re about to see are on a whole other level. Using simple materials like graphite and white chalk, Paul Cadden is able to replicate complex photos down to the tiniest details. Whether it’s the countless wrinkles on an old man’s face, the smoke from a lit cigarette or the water dripping from someone’s face, he makes it look unbelievably realistic.

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In Indonesia Football Is Played with a Ball of Fire

Sepak Bola Api, or The Fireball Game, is a unique game Indonesians play to welcome the month of Ramadan. It’s a lot like football only they have to kick a flaming fireball.

It seems regular football is pretty boring. At least that’s the feeling I get after discovering similar games like Footdoubleball, Cycle Ball or Burton-on-the-Water. The latest addition to the list of games that makes football look easy is an Indonesian tradition that had people kick a flaming football in celebration of Ramadan. It’s called Sepak Bola Api and is usually celebrated in the Yogyakarta, Bogor, Tasikmalaya, and Papua regions of the Southeastern Asia archipelago. Just like in the regular game of football, two teams of 11 eleven players kick a ball and try to shoot it in the opposing goal. But that’s easier said than done when playing barefoot and kicking a flaming ball.

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