You would be forgiven for thinking these amazing paintings are photos

Can you believe it’s not a photo? Artist’s hyper-realistic paintings are so stunningly detailed they take 400 hours to complete

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 has taught himself how to produce photorealistic paintings. 

He specializes in paintings of the female form, close-ups of facial features and still lifes that look good enough to eat. 

Amazingly, Sergey sometimes works with the canvas turned upside down to give him a fresh perspective. He also keeps a photo reference handy which he uses to pick up details to finish the piece. 

Good enough to eat: An example of Sergey’s still lifes. These blueberries covered in water droplets look simply succulent.

Extraordinary detail: Sergey revealed how each of his paintings takes between 200 and 400 hours of painstaking work.

Just like real life: Sergey’s still life of partially peeled oranges 

A pile of trash bags that look just like the real thing. 

Up, up and away! The shadows make it look like this helium balloon is escaping from the canvas behind.

True blue: A woman is depicted floating in a tranquil blue pool in another of Sergey’s extraordinary paintings.

Building up the effect: Sergey, who works with oil paint on canvas, gives a glimpse at what goes into creating a piece. He said: ‘I started painting 11 years ago when I was just 20 years old. This was after I received my first canvas and a couple of brushes as a gift. Since then, I devoted all my free time to painting. My process begins by coming up with an idea before I start painting, after which I do a photo session to receive the reference image.’

Unusual approach: Sergey sometimes works with the canvas turned upside down to give him a fresh perspective. ‘For me, the position of the canvas isn’t important since usually I still look at it from different angles during the process. My paintings can be divided into portraits and still life shots,’ he said. 

All that glitters: A series of paintings shows women with their faces, hands and necks covered in gold flecks.

Mesmerizing: Sergey pays careful attention to capturing everything from individual eyebrow hairs to finger creases.

Behind the masks: Face masks also feature heavily in Sergey’s work, including this playful example.

At work: This photo of Sergey in his studio shows the artist adding detail to the creases of the closed left eye.

Standout: Sergey said that his masked series, which includes the painting above, are among his favorite pieces of work.

Time for a close up: A tiny paintbrush is used to add the slight color and shading differentiation to the pupil.

Gold! Each of these tiny sequins was added by Sergey to this photorealistic painting of a woman’s lipsticked pout.

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