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Cardboard Cutouts Cast Incredible Shadow Art That Transforms as You Rotate It

We're used to seeing realistic portraits rendered in paint or pencil, but one Japanese artist makes art that you can't even touch—technically. Kuronushi specializes in shadow art, wherein he cuts and tears cardboard to cast a calculated shadow on the wall. Although the cardboard base doesn't look like anything that special, it creates an amazingly accurate likeness of famous celebrities when light is directed at it from the perfect angle.

Using his detailed process, Kuronushi has captured icons like Johnny Depp in his role as Captain Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribbean, and Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter. While creating any of these portraits on their own would be a feat, Kuronushi has perfected a presentation that actually features two works of art in one. At the start of his reveal, the cardboard structure casts a setting related to the celebrity. Then, Kuronushi turns the box which the structure stands upon, and as it rotates, it transforms into the face of one of these famous figures.

Although these clips are only a couple of seconds in length, they demonstrate the amount of planning that goes into making these shadow art boxes. Unlike painting or drawing, where artists have to add marks to the canvas to create a picture, Kuronushi is working in a negative process. So, he has to carefully strip away pieces of cardboard so that it will make an accurate silhouette on the wall.

Scroll down to see more amazing shadow art by Kuronushi, and be sure to follow the artist on Instagram so you don't miss an update.

Japanese artist creates amazing shadow art.

He cuts and tears cardboard boxes in unique ways to cast a realistic shadow onto the wall.

His portraits include Johnny Depp, Daniel Radcliffe, and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Kuronushi: Instagram

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Margherita Cole

Margherita Cole is a Contributing Writer at My Modern Met and illustrator based in Southern California. She holds a BA in Art History with a minor in Studio Art from Wofford College, and an MA in Illustration: Authorial Practice from Falmouth University in the UK. She wrote and illustrated an instructional art book about how to draw cartoons titled 'Cartooning Made Easy: Circle, Triangle, Square' that was published by Walter Foster in 2022.
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