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Painter without a paintbrush? Meet Michael Papadakis, who uses the sun's rays for his artwork

Have you read about heliography, ever?

Nanda Das @nanda1das 2 May 2018, 6:37 PM
Sunny side up?

Sunny side up? Image: Twitter

We know that sunlight is a source of energy, which creates electricity and pretty much sustains life as we know it. But a Colorado-based artist, Michael Papadakis, has achieved something extraordinary with the help of sunlight. Instead of paint or brush, he uses sunlight to add colours to his canvas. 

How does he do that? Well, he uses science, that is reflection and refraction, to paint with the sun. Michael holds a wide angle magnifying glass a few feet away from his wooden canvas and focuses the sun's rays on a small point.  

Is that cool or what?


Michael, an avid traveller, initially was a paint-and-brush kind of a man. But a trip down the Silk Road (connecting Asia to the Middle East and the south of Europe) changed his style completely. That is where he discovered the ingenious tool — the magnifying glass — six years ago.

Fascinating as this may sound, Michael's technique is actually based on the humble heliography, a primitive photographic process invented by Joseph Nicéphore Niépce around 1822.

This style of painting is not restricted to a particular kind of artwork. From landscapes and animal portraits to company logos, Michael does everything in his magical way. All he needs is a sunny day!

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