Bren Lee
December 13, 2015 7:59 am

We all know the struggle of trying to turn our hair into something manageable. Most of us don’t attempt to make it into a straight-up work of art. That’s what hairdressers are for, and many of them do consider themselves artists. They can delicately work color into hair for awesome sunset effects, ombre stylings, and layers that work with your best selfie angles, not against them. However, a stylist in China is taking his handiwork to a whole new level.

Hailiang Li, a 35-year-old barber based in Henan Province, turns discarded trimmings from haircuts into intricate works of art.

The barber-turned-artist uses the tiny scraps of hair to “sketch” out portraits of American actress Marilyn Monroe, Chinese painter Qi Baishi, a landscape view of the Potala Palace, and a huge spindly spiders. He achieves the effect by sprinkling the hair across canvas like salt over food, playing with shadows, lines, and shape. The results are mind blowing renditions that look like charcoal sketches, except these can easily be erased with a breath of air.

Art made out of hair is nothing new, and was wildly popular during the Victorian era when it was commonplace to wear jewelry made out of hair. However, most of this was done with full strands of hair, not the tiny, ash-like pieces of hair that Li uses.

Yahoo Style Singapore reports that Li draws his inspiration from sand art, another temporary form of art. The barber doesn’t have any formal artistic training, though he’s had a fondness for traditional Chinese painting since he was a child.

People on Weibo (China’s version of Twitter) are praising his artwork. As they point out, if Li is this good at making something beautiful out of tiny, unwanted bits of hair, imagine how good he must be at turning a bad haircut into an amazing one.

(Images via Twitter)

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