We’ve all come across an optical illusion that has deceived our eyes, but how many of us have seen one that has deceived someone else’s eyes? Mimi Choi, a makeup artist located in Vancouver, uses her abilities to morph her own face into mind-boggling visuals that appear surrealist paintings. Even if you look closely at the photographs, it is difficult to discern how she achieves these visual illusions.

Choi’s imagination appears to know no bounds when designing new appearances, whether they are amusing, whimsical, or even a little frightening at times. In each of these, however, she takes the time to meticulously paint her face in ways that imitate reality. She uses the background to help heighten the impression of the illusions she is attempting to create. Take, for example, Choi’s post on Pi Day, in which she shows herself taking the final slice from her brain. To help the spectator focus on the remaining portion of the “pie,” the rest of her head has been painted to merge into the blue sky wallpaper behind her.

Many of these makeup styles are inspired by her personal experiences with sleep paralysis, which is a condition in which a person’s mind is awake. Still, their bodies are briefly unresponsive when they awaken from sleep. According to the artist’s website, “During these bouts, [Choi] experiences vivid and often frightening visions that have inspired many of her more morbid and distorted facial expressions.” “During these bouts, [Choi] experiences vivid and sometimes frightening visions that have inspired many of her more morbid and distorted facial looks.” Choi’s additional inspirations include striking patterns, photoshopped art, and other artists like Salvador Dali and M.C. Escher. Their influence can be observed in the dreamy parts of her work.

Continue reading for more fantastic illusions, and follow the artist on Instagram for even more insight into her creative process.

Mimi Choi, a beauty artist, located in Vancouver, transforms her face into beautiful Surrealist paintings using makeup

Consequently, her face is transformed into an optical illusion

Mimi Choi: Website | Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

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