16-year-old Lara Wirth produces body painting with effects so believable that they startle strangers with their realism. “After finishing a creation [on myself], looking in the mirror can be a little frightening,” she told the Instagram blog. “I did once make a man scream in the supermarket when I rounded a corner right in front of him. He wasn’t prepared to be met by a zombie.”
Inspired by the special effects she had seen on television, the Melbourne-based teen started body painting when she was just 14 years old. In the two years since she’s been covering herself in colorful pigments, glitter, and sculptural materials, the more complex her makeup appears. Wirth transforms herself into fantastical characters that look out of this world, including ones with beautifully grotesque facial features and giant teeth that she bares towards the camera.
After finishing her makeup, Wirth documents the character and posts it on her Instagram account. “The really sad bit is washing it off—it’s a type of art that only exists in photos in the long haul,” she admits. But considering her already-burgeoning talent, we’re sure Wirth will have a chance to exercise her creativity for a long time.