Photog Uses Face Paint to Create Stunning Portraits that Look Two-Dimensional


The 2D or Not 2D series isn’t the first time Russian photographer Alexander Khokhlov has dabbled in painting his models faces and taking striking portraits of the results. His Weird Beauty series got quite popular, with black and white designs jumping out at you from the faces of his made-up models.

2D or Not 2D, however, is different — and not just because he used color this time. It’s different because the point of each photo is to trick your mind into thinking you’re looking at a two-dimensional painting.

If the idea sounds familiar, that’s because Alexa Meade does something similar using entire scenes. Khokhlov’s series is different though, because it intentionally straddles the line between painting and reality, playing tricks on your mind, whereas Meade intends to fully convince you you’re looking at a painting and not a photograph.

The portraits in 2D or Not 2D sometimes look quite painted, and optical illusions frequently play a role in making you wonder if you’re looking at a two-dimensional object. But the majority of the photos give themselves away on purpose by leaving the models’ eyes open — two pools of reality in an otherwise two dimensional-looking object.

Here’s a look at the whole series:











As with Weird Beauty, Khokhlov teamed up with Valeriya Kutsan, one of the best make-up artists in Russia, to create the designs on the models’ faces. To see more from Khokhlov, head over to our previous coverage of the Weird Beauty series or check out his website by clicking here.

(via Visual News)

Image credits: Photographs by Alexander Khokhlov and used with permission.