Not Actually Photographs: Paul Cadden’s Incredible Pencil Drawings

At first glance, the artwork of Paul Cadden looks like a series of evocative photographs. Yet Cadden’s field is not photography: it’s drawing, and all of the images on this page are painstakingly rendered with pencil, paint or charcoal on canvas.

Cadden is a hyperrealist, and going by these images, one of the best about. He copies photographs in staggering detail, creating life-like images that would fool anybody.

While much of his work features humans – seemingly right down to every last wrinkle and pore – he’s also drawn street scenes, cars and horses. The gallery on his site is worth a look.

Cadden’s canvases tend to be quite large, typically measuring 46.8ins x 33.1ins, and each takes between three and six weeks to complete. He creates around seven per year, selling them for roughly $8,000 each. He told The Sun:

“I’ve been drawing since I was six-years-old and have wanted to be an artist for as long as I can remember. I take everyday objects and scenes of people and then create a drawing which carries an emotional impact. I can fall in love with an image — if that doesn’t sound too hippy! I like to know the stories behind the faces of people I photograph — they could be a veteran war hero, you just don’t know. I have done one painting that measured 60 x 40 inches — but I’ll never do that again, it was a killer! Portraits are my favourite to do — I particularly like the one of a man with water running off his face.”

Impressive stuff – here’s a few more of Cadden’s best pieces:

paul cadden 2

paul cadden 4

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[Via Paul Cadden; thanks, Damon]