Art Students Swallow Pieces of Film to Become Human Cameras

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The next time you look in the mirror and ask yourself “what am I?”, a correct answer could be: a living, breathing camera. Last year, two art students, Luke Evans and Joshua Lake, conducted an unusual experiment in which they swallowed several pieces of film to capture the digestive system at work. Their art project was aptly named ”I Turn Myself Inside Out”.

At first glance, the artworks of Kingston University students Luke Evans and Joshua Lake look like a collection of specimens captured under a microscope, when in fact they are stills of their digestive systems doing what they do best, process stuff. The two young artists said “we wanted to bring our insides out” so they swallowed several piece of 35mm photographic film and let their bodies do the rest. They’re no doctors, so they didn’t know for sure if this would affect their health in any way, but as a precaution they put the film inside brightly colored capsules to avoid damage to their colons (those things have sharp edges). After eating the film, the two Graphic Design & Photography students waited for nature to take its course and hoped for the best. When the time came, they did their “business” in a bag, took it to a dark room and started looking for the capsules. Luckily, their bright color made them easy to spot. After retrieving the film strips, they scanned them with an electron microscope which revealed some interesting images of their insides.

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The Amazingly Intricate Porcelain Skulls of Katsuyo Aoki

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Japanese artist Katsuyo Aoki uses ceramics to create the most intricate skulls you’ve ever seen. Decorated in rococo style, her amazing works of art incorporate various lacy, swooping patterns and tendrils that make these symbols of death look beautiful.

You’ll probably never look at a skull the same way after seeing the amazing artworks of Katsuyo Aoki. The Tokyo artist specializing in detailed porcelain sculpture has chosen the ghoulish symbol for her Predictive Dream series to prove even death can be beautiful. ”The decorative styles, patterns and symbolic forms I allude to and incorporate in my works each contain a story based on historical backgrounds and ideas, myths, and allegories. Their existence in the present age makes us feel many things,; adoration, some sort of romantic emotions, a sense of unfruitfulness and languor from their excessiveness and vulgarity,” Aoki says in her artist statement. We’ve featured decorated human skulls on OC before, like the painted skulls of Hallstatt ossuary, or the elaborately carved Kapala ritual cups, but nothing quite as detailed and beautiful as these fragile porcelain masterpieces.

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Artist Creates Incredibly Realistic Papercraft Birds

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Dutch artist Johan Schreft creates three-dimensional lifesize models of birds from pieces of paper. To make his works even more realistic he paints each one by hand with watercolors and gouache. The results are simply mind-blowing.

Leiden-based Johan Schreft showed an interest in drawing as well as animals and nature at a very young age. Inspired by the artworks designed by the english artist Malcolm Topp, he started making paper bird models when he was only 14 years old. Over the years the Dutch artist honed his skills, and today his papercraft models look so realistic it’s almost impossible to tell them apart from the real birds that inspired them. Johan takes anywhere from two days to a full month to complete just one of his stunning masterpieces, and although he uses some computer software for the basic design, he does most of the work by hand. Because each bird species has its own specific features, he can’t use a standard design, so every model goes through a complex process that requires several steps and involves a lot of trial and error.

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French Artist Gives Insect Larvae the Chance to Make Their Own Jewelry

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French artist Hubert Duprat supplies Caddisfly larvae with precious materials like gold flakes, opal, turquoise, rubies, and pearls which they use to build protective casings which can be strung and worn as unique pieces of jewelry.

Caddisfly larvae live in rivers and streams, where they collect natural materials like gravel, sand, twigs and just about anything else they can carry to build elaborate armors that provide protection from various threats. The larvae glue all the debris with silk excreted through salivary glands located near their mouths. Using this knowledge, Hubert Duprat places the Caddisfly larvae in climate-controlled tanks and replaces their usual building supplies with precious and semi-precious materials and lets nature take its course. This unique collaboration between art and nature yields impressive results in the form of one-of-a-kind gilded sculptures that sometimes look a lot better than some designer jewels. The French artist views his intriguing project as a collaborative effort, and says “it is their work as much as it is mine”.

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Keng Lye’s Three-Dimensional Resin Paintings Look Incredibly Life-Like

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Singapore-based artist Keng Lye uses his phenomenal sense of perspective to create incredibly realistic animals by painting in layers of epoxy resin and acrylic paint. His series, called Alive Without Breath, features stunning works that blur the line between what is real and what is not.

The time-consuming process used by Keng Lye to create his stunningly-realistic artworks involves filling bowls, buckets, and boxes with numerous layers of lye, and painting the detailed creatures with acrylics and epoxy resin. Each piece consists of several layers, and just one little mistake can compromise weeks, even months-worth of work. This laborious technique requires the utmost patience and attention to detail, but executed to perfection it gives the artwork great depth and an overall life-like look. The art of painting/sculpting in layers of lye was made famous by Japanese artist Riusuke Fukahori, whose exceptional masterpieces we featured on Oddity Central in the past, but Keng Lye added his own unique touch by incorporating physical elements into his art pieces to make them look even more real. For his mind-blowing octopus he used a small pebble, and to make the turtle’s shell he made great use of an egg shell extruding from the resin. But even without these accessories, his fish and crustaceans look ready to jump out of the water.

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Picture-Perfect Pencil Drawn Portraits by Olga Larionova

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In this digital era, it’s amazing to see artists like Olga “Melamory” Larionova using a primitive tool like the graphite pencil to create stunning portraits that rival high-resolution black-and-white photographs.

I’ve always been fascinated by hyperrealist art, but the level of detail in Olga Larionova’s pencil artworks just blew me away. Getting every little feature and reflection just right with glossy paint is impressive enough, but doing it with a simple graphite pencil seems borderline impossible. Yet this young artist from Russia’s Nizhny Novgorod proves it can be done. The uber-talented Melamory has been drawing ever since she can remember. She started by coloring the drawings her mother used to create for her, and as the years went by she began drawing the shapes herself. You’d never guess by looking at her incredible creations, but Olga never went to art school. She did read some books on academic drawing and that helped her develop some basic techniques, but she thinks being a self-taught artist and not having to follow a strict set of rules has actually helped her develop her own unique style. Having graduated from the University of Architecture, Melamory now works as an interior designer, but hyperrealist art remains her greatest passion.

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Wacky Croatian Artist Draws Landscapes with an Industrial Angle Grinder

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You could say Albert Krtalic is a cut above other artists. The Croatian creator uses an industrial angle grinder to engrave beautiful landscapes on ceramic canvases. He recently showcased his original works during a exhibition in his home town of Makarska.

The industrial angle grinder isn’t exactly what you would call an artistic tool, but self-taught artist Albert Krtalic has been using it to engrave detailed landscapes inspired by the beauty and culture of his home country on to fragile ceramic surfaces. Asked how he came up with such an unusual engraving method, Krtalic said that the fact that he is a self-taught artist makes him more open to experimenting with different tools and mediums, hence the industrial angle grinder technique. He says mastering the industrial equipment wasn’t easy, and thathe had a lot of “casualties” in the early days, but working with a power tool has paid off in the end, as it gives his artworks an “edgy, industrial look”. Local collectors think he’s on to something and are snapping up his creations while they’re still cheap ($75 each) convinced they’ll one day be worth a small fortune.

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Talented Artist Paints on Butterfly Wings

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Inspired by the beauty and history of his home town of Istanbul, Turkish artist Hasan Kale paints stunning miniature portraits on all kinds of unusual canvases, from butterfly wings to coffee beans and even tiny pepper seeds.

No surface is to small for 53-year-old Hasan Kale. Ever since the 1980s, this Turkish micro art master has been painting his miniature marvels on things as small as cactus thorns and rice grains. Most of his works are detailed scenes of Istanbul, with its beautiful mosques and towering minarets, men rowing their boats through the Bosphorus Strait and seagulls flying in the distance. Thew level of detail in Kale’s artworks is simply unbelievable, despite the tiny canvases they’re painted on. With surgical precision, the artist guides a fine-tipped brush across butterfly wings, snail shells and fruit seeds, using his finger as a palette for mixing colors. Confronted with the skepticism of viewers who didn’t believe such wonderful works of art could be done exclusively by hand, without any digital touch-ups, Hasan Kale has recorded a series of making-of videos.

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Modern Espressionist Creates Amazing Latte Portraits

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New York City barista Mike Breach uses a toothpick as a brush to create beautiful portraits into his tasty lattes. From Albert Einstein to rapper Jay Z, it seems like there’s no face this self-proclaimed “espressionist” can’t draw on coffee.

Today Mike Breach is well-known coffee artist, with a big following on social sharing sites like Tumblr, but only a year ago he was just another barista working in a hotel kitchen surrounded by espresso machines. He was “so, so bored” that he started drawing things on coffee just to pass the time. Armed with a toothpick he realized he could manipulate the coffee foam and milk to create all kinds of designs. He started by doing hearts on his cups and people got really excited about it, so he kept on practicing and came up with adorable teddy bears, and even a portrait of the hotel boss. At first he didn’t think he could ever draw faces into his lattes, but his skills gradually improved to the point where he’s now able to create detailed celebrity portraits. The fact that his artworks only last for a few minutes only makes them more personal. “I kind of want to be like Willy Wonka with coffee- make it interesting and fun for people; take the pretentiousness out of it, take the seriousness out of it,” Mike says.

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Cheryl Kelley’s Photo-Realistic Paintings of Classic Muscle Cars Will Blow Your Mind

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They look like high-definition photos enhanced in Photoshop, but in reality Cheryl Kelley’s muscle-car inspired artworks are just really good hyper-realistic paintings. Using high-gloss oil paints the Texas-based artist  manages to capture the beauty of these iconic vehicles from a bygone era better than any camera ever could.

Cheryl Kelley has always been drawn to beautiful classic cars. During her childhood, she used to play with Hot Wheels toy cars and remembers being fascinated by their delicate curves. Now all grown up, Cheryl drives her very own 1977 Corvette, and has managed to make a name for herself in the art world by painting photo-realistic portraits of muscle cars. The talented artist finds her inspiration at classic car shows and museums, where she takes high-resolution photos of vintage Chevrolets, Camaros or Corvettes that she later uses as guidelines for her impressive creations. Working with glossy oil paints on aluminum panels, Kelley is somehow able to reproduce not only the tiniest details of the vehicles, but also every reflection, ultimately producing masterpieces that look more realistic than their photographic references.

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Artist Creates Creepy Firearm Models from Animal Bones

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New Zealand-based artist Bruce Mahalski collects animal bones and uses them to assemble creepy yet realistic-looking models of various firearms, including a Colt pistol and an AK-47 assault rifle.

Mahalski started collecting animal bones at a very young age. His parents were both scientists with collections of their own, and traveling all over the world gave them the opportunity to gather some very “interesting stuff”. In the early days of his artistic career, Mahalski experimented with a variety of mediums, from screen-printing, photography, painting and sculpture, but eventually returned to the thing that fascinated him the most – animal bones. In 2005 he created his first bone gun, and by 2010 he had already become an experienced bone artist. Most of Mahalski’s works reflect his interest in firearms and Pacific and African carving styles. They include bones from a variety of animals, birds and fish that the artist sources locally. His latest creation, a life-size AK-47 is made of rabbit, stoat, ferret, sheep, hawk, pheasant, wallaby,  snapper, snake, blackbird, tarakihi, hedgehog, broad-billed prion, shear water, thrush, seal ,cat and possum bones, plus a rare bone from a now-extinct moa the artist found in a cave. It was auctioned for $3,500.

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Everything – A Unique Fragrance That Smells Like All the 1,400 Perfumes Launched Last Year

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Created by Dutch art duo Lenert and Sander, Everything is a unique perfume made up of 1,400 samples of every new perfume launched in 2012. Can you imagine what it smells like?

The perfume business is doing better than ever, and it seems like every time you open a magazine or turn on your TV there’s a new fragrance being promoted. There are literally thousands of new fragrances being launched every year, and it looks like the world can’t get enough of them. Inspired by this booming market, creative Dutch artists Lenert and Sander have spent a whole year collecting 1,400 samples of all the perfumes launched last year and mixed them all in a 1.5 liter container to create a potent combination aptly named Everything. If you’ve ever asked yourself what a mix of all the perfumes in the world would smell like, this is your chance to find out.

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Svetlana Kolosova’s Fairy Tale Palm Paintings Bring Back Warm Memories

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Inspired by the immortal fairy tales of famous writers like Hans Christian Andersen and Antoine de Saint Exupery, Russian artist Svetlana Kolosova paints heart-warming ephemeral works of art on the palms of her hands.

Svetlana Kolosova has always had a thing for the arts, but taking care of her four children and focusing on household chores left her little time to focus on her passion. She lacked the time and concentration to work on complex oil paintings, so at one point she decided to combine her work around the house with her love for art. She replaced oil paints with watercolors and inspired by the wonderful stories she read to her children when they were little, she started painting fairy tale-inspired artworks on the most convenient canvas she could think of – her left palm. A tribute to the stories that fascinated so many young minds throughout the ages, Svetlana Kolosova’s magical palm painting series may be ephemeral in nature, but they manage to bring back such wonderful memories…

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Needle-Poked Canvas Holes Reveal Beautiful Portraits

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Tel-Aviv-based artist Michal Taharlev creates stunningly-beautiful artworks inspired by old family photos without using brushes or writing tools. Armed only with a sharp needle and mountains of patience, she pokes the canvas thousands of times to reveal heart-warming images.

Inspired by pointilism, the painting technique that uses dots to trick the eye into making up a detailed image, Israeli artist Michal Taharlev used an 0.5mm needle and methodically poked holes in canvases to create her “Holes in Memory” series. Focusing on the details of old family photographs, she managed to recreate the original images in a gradient-like fashion. “The use of a needle on a photo and the violent act of damaging and obsessing over memories, yet in a very strict manner, gives a new meaning to the innocence and the unknown future the photos hold,” the artist says. I can only imagine the patience and concentration required to complete just one of these incredible works of art, as just a few miscalculated holes can ruin days-worth of painstaking work.

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Beautiful Shadow Sculptures Made from Trash and Scrap Metal

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Dutch artist Diet Wiegman has spent the last 50 years carefully arranging pieces of trash and scrap metal to create incredibly beautiful and detailed shadow sculptures.

Looking at Diet Wiegman’s piles of junk you’re left wondering why on Earth would anyone think of them as art. There’s really nothing special about them, just a combination of scrap metal and various discarded objects that always seems to represent the same thing – chaos. But as soon as someone turns on the little projector that always accompanies his works, the real masterpiece magically appears in the background. After realizing the shadows cast by Wiegman’s trash puppets are the real artworks, viewers are puzzled by another question – how does he do it? That’s something only the artist can answer, but it’s obvious he spends a great deal of time patiently arranging every little part of his sculptures, making sure they cast the right shadow when light shines from a specific angle.

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