Body painting is the practice of using the human body as a canvas. The models are most often nude, or wearing just the bare minimum. Too much clothing and the body art, severed by the hems, can lose its seamlessness.
The following body paintings have been painted in such a way that the models seem to fade into the background, as if wearing an invisible cloak.
Painstaking attention to details, colors and lighting makes these works possible, with the models staying motionless for hours while the artist is busy.
Wallpaper Camouflage Painting by Emma Hack
In these body painting pieces, body painting artist Emma Hack uses decorative wallpaper as a background. She continues the wallpaper’s patterns on the model’s body, carefully lining up the edges of the designs and keeping the colors consistent.
On average, these body paintings take nine hours, but it can take up to 19 hours to complete a piece, depending on the level of detail required and how much of the body she will be painting.
Although the model’s skin is visible in many of these pieces, the effect is such that the nude woman seems to be a part of the wallpaper.
Environmental Camouflage Body Painting
These models have been painted in rural and industrial surroundings that would otherwise be quite plain. The artist studies the textures of the model’s background, meticulously painting rotting wood, rusting metal or flaking old paint onto the models’ bare skin.
Painting straight lines onto a body that has curves and hollows can be quite difficult. The artist must be sure to compensate for the shape of the body in order to recreate the straight edges found in architecture.
In these works of art, lighting and camera position are very important. If the model casts a shadow against the background, or moves even slightly, the human chameleon optical illusion can be lost.
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