Back in March, we shared a time-lapse that showed photographer Liu Bolin — also known as the “invisible man” — disappearing into the stage at TED 2013. The time-lapse showed what he goes through for every project: days of preparation followed by hours of standing still while artists paint him “into” the background.
His talk during that conference, however, went into much more detail. He talks about the process of creating some of his best shots, about his start, and about the motivation behind his most impressive work. Fair warning: the talk is given with an interpreter but you’ll find you need to activate and lean mostly on the closed captions as the interpreter only gets the occasional word in. Read more…
After his Beijing studio was destroyed in 2005, artist Liu Bolin (AKA “The Invisible Man”) began a project titled “Hiding in the City” that show him blending into various locations around Beijing. The photographs aren’t Photoshopped — Bolin carefully has his body painted to blend in with each landscape. TIME writes,
Each image requires meticulous planning and execution: as both artist and performer, Bolin directs the photographer on how to compose each scene before entering the frame. Once situated, he puts on his Chinese military uniform, which he wears for all of his Invisible Man photographs, and, with the help of an assistant and painter, is painted seamlessly into the scene. This process can sometimes take up to ten hours with Bolin having to stand perfectly still. Although the end result of Bolin’s process is the photograph, the tension between his body and the landscape is itself a manifestation of China’s incredible social and physical change. [#]