Hyperrealism is the name given to a type of painting, drawing or sculpture that resembles real images. These eye-catching designs look nearly identical to high-res photographs. It is almost impossible to tell that they are made using a pencil or a brush. This type of artwork is relatively new, only coming to people’s attention in the 1970s. During this time, hyper-realistic drawings and paintings became recognized by the art world, with many many American artists in mind.
The original movement was inspired by photorealism, which involves recreating photos as faithfully as possible using pencils or paint. This evolved into hyperrealism, where artists use photos as inspiration for their work. They add more details and change things up to include their own benefit.
These days, many successful artists specialize in hyper-realistic drawings. To showcase some of these realistic designs, here are some of the top artists and their creations.
1. Sensazioni by Diego Fazio
It was the drawing that launched the career of Diego Fazio. The realistic drawing depicts a woman apparently in the shower. It’s amazing to think that this drawing is not a real photo. The Italian artist is self-taught and uses pencil and paper to create his incredible works of art. His art has been shown internationally and Fazio has won numerous awards for his challenging projects.
2. Mass by Ron Mueck
This hyper-realistic art exhibit is by Australian artist Ron Mueck. It contains a collection of large skulls sculpted by Mueck. Currently on display in Melbourne, Australia, these skulls come in various shapes and sizes, some of which are twice the size of the average human. Mueck had a long and successful career in the world of sculpture. He often focuses on the human body and always delivers art that defies the norm.
3. ASOS Inspired Design by Kei Meguro
New York-based Japanese artist and illustrator Kei Meguro is another incredible artist who creates realistic prints. His contemporary designs are both realistic and eye-catching. She posts her work on Instagram where she often lists the tools she uses for each drawing. In the case of this beautiful pencil drawing, Meguro used charcoal graphite pencil on Bristol paper. Although she specializes in black and white drawings, she occasionally adds a splash of color to mix things up.
4. Hands of Cath Riley
Cath Riley is a British artist who has been drawing hyper-realistic images for several decades. His monochrome drawings often focus on the human body. The image above is one of many examples of his pencil art, showing a detailed pair of hands. Riley holds an embroidery and an MFA from Manchester Polytechnic. Although best known for her drawings, she has also built several famous 3D sculptures which have been exhibited in galleries around the world.
5. Still Life with Roemer by Jason deGraaf
Looking at Jason de Graaf’s art, it’s almost impossible to tell that they aren’t actual photos. His paintings are incredibly realistic, but as he did mentionedthe “goal is not to faithfully reproduce or document what I see one hundred percent, but to create an illusion of depth, volume and a sense of presence not found in photographs”.
The illustration above is another great work of art by this talented artist. It looks so realistic that you just want to reach out and grab the lollipops and gobble them up.
6. Sophia Blackbrough by KOhei Ohmori
Japanese artist Kohei Ohmori is said to spend up to 200 hours on every piece he creates, which is wild. He is another fantastic artist who is interested in photorealism. His designs are based on everyday objects, such as watches, shoes and beer cans. He uses graphite pencils and manages to capture the intricate details of the objects he draws.
Although the human form is not his forte, he impressed many with his hyper-realistic portrayal of British model Sophia Blackbrough. It took him about 250 hours over 85 days using just a pencil. Surprising.
7. Owl of FRanco Clun
Italians love to draw. Franco Clun is another artist from the land of pizza and pasta who has made a name for himself with hyper-realistic drawings. Clun works on watercolor paper and often takes 50 hours to complete his works. He is also self-taught, which makes his drawings even more impressive. If you like the example of his work above, you can check out more of his designs on his deviant art page.
8. Seascape by Paul Cadden
The more you look at these drawings, the harder it is to believe that they are not real. Paul Cadden is a Scottish gentleman whose accurate description of landscapes and people will amaze. His work creates the illusion of a new reality inspired by real life. He has produced many remarkable designs which sell for very high prices.
9. Peccato Nascostor de Roberto bernardi
Another Italian, Roberto Bernardi is a photorealist painter. He has been painting and drawing since the 80s. Bernardi started with landscapes and portraits before graduating hyper-realistic drawings, paintings and sculptures. He enjoys painting kitchen appliances and sweets, such as lollipops and chocolate bars. His work has been exhibited around the world and won Bernardi numerous awards.
10. Man-machine 1 by Arinse Stanley
Work with charcoal and graphite on paper, ARinze Stanley is well known for his hyper realistic drawings. Unlike many artists who work in this field, Nigerian artist Arinze Stanley imbues his work with political and social themes. The activist’s drawings evoke racism, slavery and feminism.
The drawing above was done in charcoal, ink and graphite on paper. This is just one of many hyper-realistic contemporary art pieces that can be found on Stanley’s instagram Account.
11. Face wet by Dirk Dzimirsky
Dirk Dzimirsky has been creating hyper-realistic drawings for over a decade. The German artist has honed his technique over the years and is another self-taught artist. In an interview with Art week, he detailed what he uses to draw. “I work on gray paper with graphite and carbon pencils for the shadows and a white charcoal pencil for the lights.”
He is inspired by photographs of real people he studies. It takes him between two and four weeks to draw the image and then another six weeks to paint it. In addition to drawing, Dzimirsky also teaches hyper-realistic drawing classes and dabbles in music.
12. Walter White by Rafael Konishi
Drawing from a very young age, Rafael Konishi is a Brazilian artist known for his hyper-realistic drawings. He used to draw a lot of Manga artwork before moving on to hyper realistic images. Konishi doesn’t limit himself to a certain type of image when it comes to his drawings, although portraits seem to be a favorite. Many of his more recent works are of famous actors and actresses, including the above drawing of Walter White (Bryan Cranston) from breaking Bad.
13. Soft drink cans by Pedro Campos
Pedro Campos has his work featured by Plus One Gallery in London. He only started oil painting when he was 30 and hasn’t looked back since. His work incorporates a pop aesthetic familiar to Andy Warhol fans. As he bases his paintings on photos, he tries to capture unseen details and subtleties that help make his creations unique. As you can see from the painting above, his work is hyper realistic art.
14. Starry Night by Robin Eley
Los Angeles-based Australian artist Robin Eley is an established artist whose work has won more awards than you might believe. He only found his vocation as a painter at the age of 27. His most recent collection consists of hyper-realistic paintings of famous works of art which are then wrapped in plastic. Take for example the painting above from the famous painting by Vincent van Gogh Starry Night The painting.
15. Cherry by Samuel Silva
Unlike the majority of talented people on this list, Samuel Silva is not a professional. He is a Portuguese lawyer who draws as a hobby. His ballpoint pen drawings caught the attention of the rest of the world when he started posting them on deviant art. His drawings have been presented in the likes of the Huffington Postthe Heraldand American Scientist, with people amazed at what he could accomplish with just a pen and paper. He uses a mixture of different colored pens and draws a wide range of objects and images, including people, animals and landscapes.