Pavement art has grown in popularity over the years and there are few major cities left untouched by the paintbrush of these eccentric artists. Like buskers, many may be fortunate to earn a few pennies by passing pedestrian traffic and yet remain anonymous and receive few accolades for their incredible talent. However, some street artists are more fortunate and gain international respect and commissions from towns across the globe.
Aside from the traditionalist type pavement paintings where the artist replicates famous works of art, there are also those who very cleverly create optical illusions with their paintbrush. Take a look at some of these mind-boggling three-dimensional pavement paintings scattered across the globe.
1. Feeding the Fish
Julian Beever is an established pavement painting artist. He has been creating 3D masterpieces for over 10 years and his work is going from strength to strength. In this amazing drawing, Julian has managed to fool the passerby's eye into believing that the pond is truly three dimensional. It looks like the child is really sitting in the middle of a sunken pond, ready to feed the fish that are near the surface.
Even though the drawing is only two dimensional, looking at it from this angle, there is no way you can convince your mind that it isn't real.
2. Surfing In London
A dynamic duo, Joe Hill and Max Lowry have made the impossible possible, with their pavement painting of a surfer riding the waves in what looks to be a building site.
It is difficult to distinguish what is real and what isn't when it comes to looking at edges of the painting but be assured that this is a true optical illusion. The painting is on a flat surface and even though your mind interprets the painting as real, you will not get splashed from the leaping wave, nor will you fall into the depths of the ocean as the water pool suggests.
3. Flash Flood In Canada
Said to be the largest three-dimensional street painting ever created, this amazing optical illusion was the brainchild of Edgar Mueller. Over 280 square meter of pavement was painted by Edgar and a few local artists, and the result is truly spectacular.
Standing at the edge of the enormous waterfall at the end of the painting is sure to make vertigo sufferers feel queasy, whilst those people daring to sit on painted makeshift raft look like they are going to be swept downstream any minute.
Imagine you are strolling along to the shopping centre and you nearly fall into a deep, dark pit filled with fierce looking jaguars. Frightening, right? Fortunately, this pit is just another brilliant 3D pavement painting by the esteemed international street artist Rod Tryon.
Created as part of his series of pavement paintings at the Walk of Jumeirah Beach Residences in Dubai, this incredible work of art really fools the mind into believing that the jaguars are ready to jump out and attack innocent pedestrians.
5. Stunt City
This collaboration between four extraordinarily talented artists stopped pedestrians in their tracks with this outstanding view of the imagined city. Edgar Muller, Marion Ruthardt, Gregor Wosik and Manfred Stader created this masterpiece at the Potsdamer Platz in Berlin in just 4 days.
It deceives the observer into believing that they are standing at the top of a skyscraper looking down onto the street below - you can actually feel dizzy as you look down far below into this painted city. Hero wannabes may even feel compelled to leap over the edge and save the men hanging from the helicopter.
6. The Crevasse
One of the most outstanding achievements in pavement painting must be this enormous crevasse painted by Edgar Mueller in Dun Laoghaire, Ireland for the Festival of World Culture in 2008.
At approximately 250 square meters in size, you can only begin to imagine how much printer ink would take to replicate this on paper! This incredible painting is one of the best examples of optical illusion to date. You really do feel like you will fall into the abyss if you stand too close to the edge. Perhaps he should have painted danger signs along the perimeter to warn people of the impending danger.
Anyone who loved reading comic books as a child will instantly love this beautifully drawn picture of Batman. It is another superb anamorphic pavement painting by British pair Joe Hill and Max Lowry.
Bursting out of the pavement, Batman looks positively omnipotent and set to put right the injustices of not only his painted world below, but ours too.
8. Street Scene
This rather pretty picture of a street is another of Ulla Taylor's accomplishments. Like visiting one of those miniature model city attractions, this perfectly proportioned illustration of a street scene is anamorphic, distorting the viewer's perception into believing that they are standing, or sitting, high in the treetops looking down on the little street.
It makes you feel like a voyeur, spying on the inhabitants but unlike real people, I am sure they don't mind.
9. Batman & Robin
This cleverly constructed scene of Batman and Robin scaling the side of a burning building to rescue a real person is another testament to Julian Beever's amazing artistic talent and ingenuity when it comes to creating visually deceptive pavement paintings.
It really does look like the man is perched on a tiny ledge awaiting rescue while the people on the street below watch in morbid fascination, but in truth, the entire scene is drawn on a flat surface and the man is not in any danger at all.