Toastman Creates Giant Toast Portrait of Marilyn Monroe

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Maurice Bennet, also known as “The Toastman“, has created a large scale portrait of Marilyn Monroe using thousands of colorful pieces of toast.

Known for his original toast art, the New Zealand-based artist was commissioned by a Shanghai shopping mall to create one of his signature works. With the help of young local artists, The Toastman created a colorful portrait of Hollywood icon Marilyn Monroe, out of 6,000 pieces of toast. The original piece has already been completed and will be placed on display at the Xintiandi Mall, in Shanghai, on Monday, July 25.

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Rebecca Foster’s Poppy Seed Art

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They might look like sloppy prints or stenciled graffiti, but in fact you’re looking at unique works of art made with thousands of poppy seeds. Unbelievable, I know.

These incredible illustrations are the work of British artist Rebecca Foster, renowned for her talent of turning food and spices into regular art mediums. She is regularly commissioned by famous brands in the food industry to create works of art using their products. Apart from this mind-blowing series of poppy seed illustrations, she has used other unusual ingredients, like steak and ketchup, or foods from a traditional Sunday dinner, to make her original works. You can check them out on Rebecca’s official site.

The poppy seed artworks below were created back in 2009 for a Hovis advertising campaign, and each illustration took around five hours to complete.

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Artist Recycles Old Maps into Beautiful Illustrations

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You’ll probably never look at maps the same way again, after seeing the works of Ingrid Dabringer. She uses maps as canvases for amazing painted figure drawings.

Ingrid spins old maps searching for figures formed by interdependent lines, and after she spots them she cleverly uses the roads, colors and geography of the map to define her drawings. She basically transforms common maps into drawings of human figures and whimsical creatures, using acrylic paint to reveal their hidden shape. “I like to elevate the mundane. The Mundane is so saturated with meaning if we just take an extra second to dwell on it. The Mundane is saturated with symbolism,” Dabringer says about her art.

This isn’t the first time we’ve seen maps recycled into works of art, but Ingrid Dabringer’s works are indeed some of the most creative and inspiring I’ve ever seen. If you like her map-art, you can check out more of it on her Etsy shop and her blog. Now if you’ll excuse I have an old World Atlas I’d like to explore.

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Father Sculpts Giant Clay Head of His Daughter

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Indonesian artist Eddi Prabandono has created a giant clay sculpture modeled after the head of his 5-year-old daughter, Luz.

Tourists walking through Taman Budaya Yogyakarta, in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, will be surprised to see a 4 meter by 4 meter child’s head made of clay, in a 2,5 meters-deep hole in the ground. It’s not exactly the kind of sight you normally see in Indonesia, but it’s definitely breathtaking to look at. Part of the “Luz Series” envisioned by Indonesian artist Eddi Prabandono, the giant head in question is actually modeled after the head of his daughter, Luz.

Although he had the help of 15 workers, Eddi also needed to rent an excavator to make the hole for his giant clay sculpture, but the 47-year-old artist is just happy he received the support of local authorities who allowed him to dig a hole right in Taman Budaya Yogyakarta. Luz’s giant head is made of 25 tons of special clay and was created for the 2011 edition of Jog Art, and artistic exhibition featuring 241 artworks by over 150 artists.

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Artist Creates World’s Largest Lite-Brite Image

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Rob Surette wanted to create something unlike any artist’s tribute to the tragic events of September 11, 2001, so he turned to one of his favorite childhood toys, Lite-Brite pegs, and managed to create the world’s largest Lite-Brite image.

Known for his quick brush strokes, the self described “fastest portrait artist in the world” once painted a portrait of Albert Einstein in just 60 seconds, but while his lighting speed hasn’t won him a place in the record books, his latest artwork, made from hundreds of thousands of Lite-Brite pegs, surely will. “It wasn’t like I wanted to beat that world record, I wanted to create something to add to the healing of Sept. 11,” Surette says about his 10 feet by 20 feet Lite-Brite creation entitled World Peace. Made from 504,000 pegs, and weighing around 1,750 pounds, it depicts 100 faces of different races, cultures and religions and is meant to promote world peace.

“I felt that with my inspiration, to have it be a world record will help catch more people’s attention and help it travel and be seen around the world,” Surette said about his work. He first got the idea of creating the largest Lite-Brite image after seeing a picture of the current record holder on an art blog. It was the Lite-Brite recreation of a training sneaker made by Lori Kanary, with 374,004 pegs. As a matter of fact Kanary actually shared some trade secrets with Rob Surette after hearing the motivation behind his work of art, and he apologized for breaking her world record.

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Woman Pays $10,000 for Non-Visible Artwork

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The Museum on Non-Visible Art, or MONA, houses a variety of non-visible works of art that can only be admired by reading the artist’s description. Sounds weird, but believe it or not, someone actually paid $10,000 for one of these ‘masterpieces’.

I have to admit I’ve always wondered why some people spend thousands, sometimes millions of dollars on abstract art pieces that look like the work of someone who has nothing in common with art. But then again, I’m not very art-inclined. Anyway that doesn’t seem so strange to me anymore, not since I read this article about a woman who paid $10,000 for an artwork she can’t even see. “Fresh Air” was just one of the works exhibited at the Museum of Non-Visible Art, a strange project supported by actor James Franco that tries to take conceptual art to a whole new level. There is an official website and even an explanatory video, but basically this museum hosts works of art that don’t exit in the physical world, instead they are imagined by the artist.

So when someone buys one of these unusual creations all they get is a card with a description of the artwork made by the author and a letter of authenticity. You can place the card on a blank wall in your house or an art gallery and describe it to visitors, so they may enjoy it as well. Here’s the description for Fresh Air, the recently sold artwork:

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Designer Makes Jewelry from Real Human Bones

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Columbine Phoenix is a talented jeweler with a taste for the macabre. She makes unique jewelry from human bones collected from medical schools and museums.

We’ve covered some pretty bizarre jewelry collections in the past, some were made from insects, others from nail clippings, and even human hair, but Columbine’s “Churchyard” line is the weirdest one yet. She uses various human bones donated for educational purposes and transforms them into unique pieces of jewelry that actually celebrate life rather than death. “Death is a part of life” the designer says in an interview with Vice Style “You can’t die unless you’re alive, and if we weren’t going to die eventually, a whole lot of us would never get around to living.” Strangely enough, that makes sense.

As a child, Columbine Phoenix loved shiny things, and she remembers playing pirates with her brother by stealing her grandmother’s rhinestone button collection from each other. Later she tried making embroidery-floss friendship bracelets and seed beads woven on a loom, but quickly lost interest in things everyone else was doing. She started making jewels from seashells, feathers and other stuff provided by nature, and when a friend from medical school asked her if she wanted to buy some small human bones for her work, she decided to give it a shot. His department was consolidating the bone collection and when he showed them to her for the first time, she knew they were just perfect. Human ivory she called them.

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Pencil Shaving Portraits by Kyle Bean

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Artist Kyle Bean has created a series of unique portraits made with pencil shavings, for the new Handmade Issue of Wallpaper Magazine.

We’ve already featured Brighton-based Kyle bean a couple of times, for his intricate matchstick insects and eggshell chicken, and he continues to amaze us with more original works. Having been asked to contribute on the Handmade Issue of Wallpaper, he has created a series of beautiful portraits using only pencil shavings from colored pencils. A time-lapse video of the process of making one of these incredible works of art is also in the works, and will appear in the online edition of Wallpaper Magazine.

With such incredible projects under his belt already, I wonder what Kyle Bean has in store for us, in the future.

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The Cut-Away Leaf Art of Lorenzo Duran

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Some artist sculpt stone, others carve wood, but Spanish artist Lorenzo Duran decided to express his artistic talent by cutting tree leaves.

Even if Lorenzo Duran’s artworks were created digitally, like they appear to be, they’d still leave you impressed, but the skilled artist cuts his intricate models into real leaves, using a very sharp scalpel. He believes every natural object and living thing has a bit of art in it and is a good medium to experiment his creativity. Inspired by the old paper-cutting techniques of Chinese and Japanese artists, he decided to try them out on leaves, and although he still has a long way to go, he has created some truly impressive pieces. Whenever he gets an idea for a motif he first puts it on paper, then places it over a leaf and uses the scalpel to cut.

Duran has experimented a lot with cutting various types of leaves, and admits that most of his early works ended up in the trash, but he learned from his mistakes and developed a whole process of preparing leaves and cutting them so they don’t break as often. He has to pick just the right leaves (thicker ones are better), then come the washing, drying, pressing  and cutting. The last part is obviously the most delicate, because fragile leaves can break right at the end, and the artist loses days of work in an instant. Pretty frustrating, but nothing beats the feeling of fulfillment when he actually completes one of his cut-away artworks.

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Photographic Artist Creates Beautiful Images That Will Probably Disgust You

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Chris Jordan is a photographic artist who uses his artworks to bring awareness to a serious problem of our time – consumerism. Seen from afar his images look like modern recreations of famous masterpieces, but as soon as he approaches the viewer is confronted with thousands of photographs of waste assembled into a beautiful picture.

He’s been called “the ‘it’ artist of the green movement” for his ability to send clear messages about mass consumption through beautiful images that end up disgusting the viewer. But while he’s always been interested in photography, he studied law school and became a corporate lawyer who only dedicated his free time to his favorite hobby. His father, a businessman, had also been passionate about photography and Chris remembers he “was filled with regret” that he couldn’t practice it full time. So, determined not to repeat his mistake, the young lawyer moved to Seattle, and quit the bar after ten years of practicing law, to dedicate his life to photography.

It was definitely a risky move, but definitely an inspired one as the success of his early shows in New York and Los Angeles propelled his career. Chris Jordan came to tackle consumerism by chance. He had taken photos of a pile of garbage and found it beautiful because of its complexity and great color, but when friends of his, who were active in consumerism, started commenting on it, he got the idea for his future projects.

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Giant York Corn Maze Pays Homage to Harry Potter

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Farmer Tom Pearcy, a big fan of Harry Potter, decided to celebrate the release of the final movie of the series, by carving a giant Harry Potter-themed maze in his corn field.

Clearly a victim of the Harry Potter mania that’s sweeping the planet these days, Pearcy has cut two 50-meter portraits of the boy wizard in his Elvington corn field, thus creating the world’s largest spot-the-difference image and the biggest Daniel Radcliffe portrait ever. “I’m a big fan of Harry Potter and the release of the final film this summer marks the end of an era. I wanted to do something imaginative to say farewell to Harry, so creating the biggest image of him ever made and making it a spot the difference competition seemed like an interesting way to do that.” Mr. Pearcy told York Press.

Believe it or not, this gifted farmer manged to create 10 km of intricate pathways for visitors to explore when visiting his maze, and did it all my carving over one million corn plants. You could say he’s had some experience at it, since his corn maizes have become sort of a local tradition and tourist attraction. In previous years he His previous corn maze designs include a Spitfire airplane, an astronaut, the Statue of Liberty and the Flying Scotsman.

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Jeweler Immortalizes Pet Snouts and Paws into Fashion Accessories

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Jewel artist Jackie Kaufman has sniffed out a way to help pet owners keep they’re beloved companions close even after they’ve left this world. She creates beautiful sterling silver jewelry based on molds of animal snouts and paws.

Jackie creates all kinds of beautiful accessories, all of which you can see at her Etsy shop, but she’s best known for her unique series of animal mold pieces. She got the idea after she was approached by a client who owned a terminally ill dog, and has been creating them ever since. First, Jackie sends her clients special molds with which they can take highly detailed impressions of their animal’s noses and paws, and when she receives them she hand-casts them in sterling silver rings, pendants, bracelets and other accessories. The pet’s name or a special message can also be engraved on the back.

Owning such unusual jewelry is definitely a sign of love for your pet, but how does one get a dog or cat to wear a mold on its nose, even for a short while? My dog barely lets me touch his nose, let alone grab it and cover it with something. And how does the animal breathe when his nose is covered?

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Bashir Sultani’s Art with Salt

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They say it’s back luck to spill salt, but Toronto-based Bashir Sultani clearly has little regard for superstition, as he has no problem spilling the seasoning and shaping its fine crystals into detailed portraits of modern icons.

After spilling salt onto a black background, Afghan-born Sultani uses basic tools, like a razor blade and Q-tips to manipulate the grains into portraits of actors, singers, popular movie characters and other icons. He makes it all look easy in his videos, but it’s obvious you need a great deal of patience and skill to create such original masterpieces.

Be sure to check his YouTube channel for more making-of videos of his amazing salt portraits.

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Incredibly Talented Artist Paints with Her Lips

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Natalie Irish is one of those artists who doesn’t need to use her hands to create mind-blowing masterpieces. Like someone said, she has more talent in her lips than most do in their entire body.

You probably haven’t seen Natalie’s art before, neither had I, and that’s a real shame because she creates some pretty original stuff. Using only her lips and a lipstick, she creates detailed portraits, like the one of Marilyn Monroe, pictured below.  The Houston-based artist simply puckers her lips and kisses the paper canvas thousands of times, until she gets the desired result.

Get ready for the coolest thing you’ll see all day:

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Sweet Architecture: The Sugar Cube Sculptures of Brendan Jamison

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Brendan Jamison is a young contemporary artist who creates arguably the sweetest sculptures in the world, literally. His designs are top notch, but its the sugar cubes he uses as building material that make his works irresistible.

31-year-old Jamison, from Belfast Northern Ireland, first started using sugar cubes as building blocks for large scale buildings in 2004, when he created a series of 9-foot-tall minaret-style buildings. They caused quite a stir in the art world, and even caught the eyes of building developers, many of which commissioned him to create sweet models of their architectural projects.

Although he has worked with a variety of materials throughout his artistic career, including  bronze, wood and wool, it’s safe to say it was his sugar-cube creations that brought him international recognition. “Sugar is a beautiful material to work with, it can be cut and carved into organic shapes, and the sugar crystals can provide a sparkling surface in natural light”, Jamison says about his favorite medium.

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