Drawing attention to himself: Artist combines photos with stunning sketches

Yahoo News.
Two faced: ‘The drawings are done with a simple pencil on a sheet of paper' Sebastien explained (Ross Parry)

This artist certainly draws attention to himself as he brings himself to life in cleverly composed artworks.

Sebastien De Grosso, 33, turns a self-portrait into an animated cartoon, before photographing his work to produce cleverly merged artworks which are part-photo and part-sketch.

His first drawing was simply a creative idea for an online profile picture, but he soon turned the idea into a quirky collection.

He said: ‘At the beginning, it was just for updating my Facebook picture profile, but after some reflection, I decided to try and make a series of images.

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‘All my pictures are taken inside my apartment, using only natural light.

‘The drawings are done with a simple pencil on a sheet of paper. Then, the drawing is scanned, cleaned and added to the picture with Photoshop tools.

‘I take thousands of images using a remote control, and then choose a selection of my favourites.’

Sebastien, from Paris, uses a number of techniques to bring life to the images.

‘The pencil strokes are fast and nervous, and so give the impression of a construction,’ he explained.

‘Then, my 'dodge and burn' effect is used a lot in the final rendering. It is in fact a multitude of brush strokes, black or white, which serve to highlight, or rather mitigate some facial features, and clothing.

‘This treatment is intended to look like a little more like a painting than a photo. This allows me to make it more pleasant to the eye, between the photo and the drawing part.’

Sebastien, who was taught to draw by his grandmother, uses the sketches to illustrate his life, and events that have been important to him.

‘When I make a creative or conceptual image, I try to attract the attention of the viewer and hold it,' he said.

Sebastien turns his self-portraits into an animated cartoon (Ross Parry)

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 ‘From the shooting to the final image, it can take a few hours to several days. Sometimes, I need to take a break on an image to go back a few days later.

‘I suddenly bring a new look, and I can find mistakes that I hadn't necessarily noticed before.

Sebastien's work has attracted a number of reactions to the mixing of photography and sketching.

‘Some people really love the idea to mix photography and sketches, but some others don’t like it, or say it’s too simple to do,’ he added.

‘My grandmother taught me to draw, and by watching her drawing and painting made me want to do the same.

‘And this is definitely what influenced me the most to continue in this direction.

‘When I take a picture, the graphic side occurs often in the composition, because I try to frame the subjects logically.’

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Following his sketching success, Sebastien is now hoping to develop his series further.

‘I have many more creative and innovative ideas in my head and they will be challenging to realise,’ he said.

‘But I hope I will be successful in achieving them all.’