Seeing double? Hidden inside these remarkable oil paintings by artist Oleg Shuplyak lies a second layer of mind-blowing optical illusions. (Daily Mail)
Behind carefully placed objects, characters, colouring and shadows, the Ukrainian painter has cleverly concealed a second image.
Blurring famous figures from art and culture with landscapes the ingenious artist’s work requires a double take – or sometimes, minutes of staring – before the hidden images reveal themselves.
Famous faces among those given Shuplyak’s painterly treatment include John Lennon, Pablo Picasso, Sigmund Freud, Charles Darwin, Paul Gauguin, Zeus and Uncle Sam.
Using this style of painting it can be hard for the artist to balance the weight of the two images.
In fact, in some of the paintings the illusion is so recognisable that it is the original image that is momentarily lost to the viewer.
The artist reverses our expectations by making the second image is so easily seen that you can actually struggle to see the first one – in his case usually unknown characters in a landscape setting.
Observing the painting closely and attempting not to concentrate on the central face it should still be possible to see the initial setting .
Shuplyak manages not to fall into the trap whereby the artist forces elements needed to construct the illusion into the painting that even if they don’t necessarily fit well in the original setting.
Evolving picture: On The Origin Of Species author Charles Darwin is formed using a brick archway, a country scene, a lady reading and a mysterious cloaked figure
Born on September 23, 1967, in the Ternopol region of the Ukraine, Shuplyak studied architecture at the Lviv Polytechnic Institute.
His passion was always painting, however, and he has used the technical precision of an architect to create these intriguing optical illusions.
Often his pictures depict famous historical figures like Charles Darwin, Vincent van Gogh and William Shakespeare.
Historical references: Marauding Russian tsar Ivan the Terrible comes through in this violent scene
The works are similar to those of the famous Mexican artist Octavio Ocampo, who is well known for evocative paintings in which detailed scenes weave together to create larger images.
Ocampo has dubbed this the metamorphic style, and in his works the second image can sometimes be so subtle it is hard to discern without squinting.
Back at ya: Mr Shuplyak gives himself the special treatment