These hyperrealistic 3D tattoos will make you do a double take

New Hampshire tattoo artist Jesse Rix’s specialty is 3D tattoos. Rix combines nature and realism to create stunning, hyperrealistic tats, many of which look more like optical illusions because of his combination of line work, shading and geometry.

One back tattoo the artist did is otherworldly. It looks as though the person’s back has been carved into skin-like, hexagon-shaped segments.

At the center the segments start to dissipate to reveal an idyllic scene. In it a man rows a boat on a lake surrounded by trees. There’s a mountain range in the distance surrounded by a dark purple and blue night sky.

Like much of his work, the tattoo is an eye-catching juxtaposition between the natural and unnatural. Unsurprisingly, Rix is influenced by surrealists like Salvador Dalí and M.C. Escher.  

“I’m trying to represent that mindset when you enter into a REM sleep or a dreamlike state and your subconscious comes to the forefront,” Rix told My Modern Met.

In a different video, Rix tattooed his friend Jeff’s chest. Similar skin-like hexagons appear to part open to reveal a cyborg-like aesthetic.

Rix is so skilled he creates the appearance of a second layer of hexagons that resembles metal parts. At the center of Jeff’s chest there’s a flower shape with a blue galaxy swirling in it. The tattoo looks like something a character would have in a sci-fi movie. 

It’s not all about hexagons though.

Rix makes it look like a person’s tattooed arm has been dissected into square chunks. To show off the realism in the photo, Rix pretends to grab one of the pieces with his fingers. The optical illusion is not for the faint of heart!

If you liked this story, check out In The Know’s article that shows Post Malone before his face tattoos

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