An artist has shared examples of his breathtaking hyper-realistic paintings that take up to 400 hours to complete.
Sergey Piskunov, 31, from Ukraine, started painting 11 years ago and taught himself to create photo-realistic paintings.
He specializes in paintings of the female form, close-ups of facial features and still lifes that look good to eat.
Amazingly, Sergey sometimes works with the canvas upside down to give it a new perspective. He also keeps a photo reference on hand that he uses to pick up details to finish the piece.
Photo-realistic: Sergey Piskunov, 31, from Ukraine, started painting 11 years ago and now creates hyper-realistic paintings
Catching the light: this beautiful painting of a woman’s face, studded with gold foil, is typical of Sergey’s work
Specialized: Sergey likes to paint paintings of the female form, such as the two shown above, as well as facial features
Good enough to eat: an example of Sergey’s still lifes. These blueberries covered in water droplets just look juicy
Design detail: Sergey reveals how each of his paintings takes between 200 and 400 hours of painstaking work
Just like in real life: Sergey’s still life with partially peeled oranges (left) and a pile of garbage bags that look like the real thing
On, on and off! The shadows make it look like this helium balloon is escaping from the canvas behind it
He said: ‘I started painting eleven years ago when I was only twenty. This was after I got my first canvas and a few brushes as a gift. Since then I have spent all my free time painting.
‘My process starts with coming up with an idea before I start painting, after which I do a photo session to receive the reference image.
‘I work directly on the canvas for between 200 and 400 hours. While painting, I often rotate the canvas to make it easier to work with the details.
‘The position of the canvas is not important to me, as I usually look at it from different angles during the process. My paintings can be divided into portraits and still lifes.
True Blue: A woman is depicted floating in a tranquil blue pool in another extraordinary painting by Sergey
Building the effect: Sergey, who works with oil on canvas, gives a glimpse of what goes into creating a piece
Unusual approach: Sergey sometimes works with the canvas upside down to give it a new perspective
Everything that shines: a series of paintings shows women with their faces, hands and necks covered with flecks of gold
Passion: This striking piece features screaming women competing against each other as paint is poured over their heads
Glamorous: Sergey pays close attention to capturing everything from individual eyebrow hairs to finger folds
Behind the Masks: Face masks also play a huge role in Sergey’s work, including this playful example
At work: this photo of Sergey in his studio shows the artist adding details to the folds of the closed left eye
Notable: Sergey said his series of masks, including the above painting, are among his favorite works
Time for a close-up: a small brush is used to add the light color and shadow differentiation to the pupil
‘I made a’ mask series’ in which I paint masks over portraits of people and it is one of my favorite works. My advice to others who want to paint is to believe in yourself and have fun with what you do. ‘
In one of his masterpieces, Sergey has portrayed a woman with a cracked mask over her face – and his unique painting skills have brought the artwork to life with its amazing 3D effects.
Another piece shows blueberries dripping with water – which look so realistic you’ll almost want to wipe the liquid off before it hits the ground.
Other creations include a woman peering out from behind what looks like green cellophane wrapping the frame, and a piece featuring two women shouting at each other while paint seemingly dripping from their heads.
Making an impact: To add to the drama of the work, Sergey chooses to work on large canvases like the one above
Step by Step: Sergey starts with a light sketch of the overall shape he wants to achieve before moving on to paint
Gold! Each of these small sequins was added by Sergey to this photorealistic painting of a woman wearing lipstick