There’s no doubt that if we saw this crawly creepin’ at us IRL we’d most definitely bolt the other way as we shout for our less spidey-scared bestie to handle it. But with the barrier of the screen between us and It, we took a deep breath and leaned in to examine this fear-breeding critter only to discover that it’s no critter at all. It’s the remarkable work of UK-based body artist Emma Fay, who used water-based paints to transform a contortionist into ultra-realistic insects and animals.
Close up, the artsy optical illusion literally Made Us Look double take-style, in which our reactions quickly turned from ewwwwww to awwww cool! Squint and you start to notice that the hairy extremities, the spooky eyes and the pinchers are just strategically painted on backbending model Lowri Thomas’ body. Props to Thomas for holding that pose (yoga inspo, much?) and +100 to Fay, who spent around five hours masterfully brushing, blotting and blending the fuzzy form onto her living canvas.
Building off of her hair + beauty industry know-how, the 27-year old artist has been creating conceptual body art for three years. Fay has painted fairy tale features onto faces and forms around the globe, from circus-tinged second skins you imagine would be all the rage at Burning Man to Alice in Wonderland-inspired face paint that would nab first prize in any Halloween costume contest. For this series though, she turned to a more natural subject matter for inspiration, and the results are just as thrilling.
From the small to the tall, here model Beth Sykes poses as a giraffe — back bent to form the animal’s body and leg outstretched to mimic its long neck. How cool is that? And finally, Fay’s last masterpiece, a rainbow-colored seahorse painted upside down on Sykes who balances in a handstand to bring it to life.
What’s the most jaw-dropping artistic transformation you’ve seen lately? Tell us in the comments below.
(h/t The Guardian)