Did you think you were observing sweet Japanese photographs? It is to be misunderstood and, yet, nothing of the kind. These magnificent portraits of women are actually oil paintings produced by Yasutomo Oka, a photo-realistic artist. From countless photographs of his models, he reproduces their image detail by detail, then sublimates them. If many talents are engaged in the exercise, the young Japanese, aged only thirty years, has established himself as a master of the genre. Presentation.
Squinting your eyes won’t help: every detail of these portraits refers to the illusion of a photograph. The breathtaking performance was achieved by Yasutomo Oka 岡靖 知, a young painter from Komaki, in Aichi prefecture. Maybe you already know him? He was able to stand out thanks to a hyperrealistic series that honors Japanese women.
In order to obtain this impeccable rendering, he devotes months of work for each work. For all models, he first carefully chooses an outfit: a traditional fabric or a more everyday garment, but no less thoughtful. Then he selects an appropriate decor, often soft and bucolic : sober or warm interior, floral tapestry in the style of traditional prints, garden, luminous forest or winter landscape … In the background, it is therefore a whole universe that is emerging. He then takes hundreds of pictures : every detail of the scene is finely observed and captured. Finally, he reproduces this show oil on canvas : pose, colors, textures, depth, light and, above all, the look. The eyes, in fact, is what is most important to transcribe for Yasutomo Oka. This is a stage on which he is particularly focused.
But beyond technical prowess, if his creations hypnotize us so much, it is also because the young master manages to translate a special, delicate atmosphere. Games of pigments, lines and shadows create a light thick, very suitable for developed photos. The feeling of relief and presence is also exacerbated by natural expressions and postures. Not considering the subjects emerge with incredible subtlety thanks to hours of meticulous work. Finally, the frame allows us to establish our impression: direction of gaze and proximity to faces seem specific to photography. The whole is striking!
Because the canvases speak for themselves, here is a small discovery selection prepared by Poulpy – special mention for the fabulous kimonos:
Sumptuous, isn’t it? Which of these paintings struck you the most…? Rather sensitive to photo-realism? If not: did Yasutomo Oka’s special one make you change your mind? Poulpy is won over!