(Pocket-lint) – Each year there’s a Photoshop contest over at DesignCrowd where artists create brilliant new works of art by putting celebrities into old renaissance paintings.
The results are something really special. We’ve collected some of our favourites from the last few years for you to enjoy. If you like what you see, we’d highly recommend having a browse through the archives.
A portrait of a mother
This painting might well be one of the oldest on our list. It dates back to somewhere around 1490 and shows Barbara Dürer, mother of German painter Albrecht Dürer. The updated version including an improved and enhanced vision with Angelina Jolie in her place.
A romantic view of Anthony Hopkins
This is another brilliant Photoshopping edit of a classic oil painting. The original image was a portrait of Francisco Goya, a famous Spanish painter. We really like the new version that includes Anthony Hopkins. Not just because he looks magnificent, but because the Photoshopper also went to the trouble of updating all the colours and hue in the image too.
Brad Pitt the thinker
The original subject of this painting was Alexander von Humboldt was a polymath, geographer, naturalist, explorer and much more besides. He was a highly thought of German thinker and a man of influence. His likeness has been replaced with Brad Pitt who looks a lot more mischevious, but certainly a dash more intellectual than usual.
Portrait of Christian Bale
The original oil painting here is thought to be from around 1600 and shows a portrait of Jorge Manuel Theotocopoulos by Greek artist known as El Greco. The new version shows a fun-loving Christian Bale who oddly looks more like an angry vampire than a chilled out painter.
A portrait of theburgomaster
The original oil painting, the Portrait of Jakob Muffel, was crafted by German Renaissance master Albrecht Dürer in 1526 and shows the local burgomaster (mayor) of Nuremberg. Now updated and tweaked it features a wise-looking Michael Cane.
A portrait of Gillian Anderson
There’s no denying that Gillian Anderson looks fairly stunning on canvas, but what we really like is the effort this Photoshop editor put into the tweaks. Including changes to the skintone, addition of the necklace and even accounting for the different hairstyles.
Ludwig Van Jagger
In a rather fitting Photoshopping, one artist who goes by the name Dm2 transformed this portrait painting of Ludwig van Beethoven by swapping the pianist with the founder of the Rolling Stones – Sir Mick Jagger.
Patrick Stewart in a military costume
The original image here is a famous Rembrandt painting titled “An old man in military costume” and shows his father in his full regalia. It’s been wonderfully updated here with Patrick Stewart magnificently worked into the painting instead.
Portrait of Innocent Tom Cruise
The original oil painting was lovingly crafted by Diego Velázquez in 1650 and shows pope Giovanni Battista Pamphilj. The updated version shows a fun-loving Tom Cruise, in his place. Fun fact Tom Cruise actually wanted to join the priesthood at one point in his life, so this Photoshopping is actually fairly fitting.
Childish Gambone Player
This Photoshopping tweaks William Sidney Mount’s The Bone Player replacing the original subject with Donald Glover. We wonder if Mr Glover would have been this happy to perform for audiences in this way.
General-Field Marshal Pitt
We love how majestic this Photoshopping makes Brad Pitt look, seen here with full military gear, medals and all in place of Prince Pyotr Mikhailovich Volkonsky.
Another classic painting of a famous general transformed into a new vision of a modern celebrity. Leonard Nimoy certainly looks pretty special in full military garb.
Keanu Reeves behind closed doors
Keanu Reeves sure is breathtaking. Somehow even more so in a magnificent dress and painted in oil. The original painting was Portrait of Madame F, by Edouard Louis Dubufe that was created in 1850. We wonder what the artist would think of the tweaks to his painting.
Caravaggio and Bean
This original image dates all the way back to 1593 and shows an early self-portrait work by artist Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio. It is said this image was painted while the artist was extremely ill and done in a mirror. Reimagine with Mr Bean/Rowan Atkinson, the image certainly takes on more life.
A portrait of a youngAmanda Seyfried
Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun painted a “Portrait of a young woman” in 1797, over two hundred years later Photoshop whizz thejohndevil updated it with the likeness of American actress and signer-songwriter Amanda Seyfried. This one is fairly convincing – like those images that purport to show celebrities who never age.
A young Emma Watson
A young lady is painted undressing before a bath in 1900 by William-Adolphe Bouguereau. Later she is reimagined with the face of a young Emma Watson. Harry Potter would probably have enjoyed this one.
A portrait of a young scholar
This original painting from 1597 shows a young scholar posing for a portrait. The modern reimaging shows actor Jude Law sporting one heck of a magnificent beard.
Wolfgang von Gibson
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe was a talented writer capable of creating works of poetry, prose and memoirs as well as treatises on botany, anatomy and colour. This painting of him by Joseph Karl Stieler from 1832 shows a well-worn and well-read man of note. The update vision includes a cheerful Mel Gibson, probably chortling at a well-written script.
A self-portrait of Stallone
Another famous Rembrandt painting gets the Photoshop treatment and updated with the likeness of another well-known celebrity. There’s no denying, Stallone looks great in oil.
Richard Wagner vs Huge Laurie
This fairly magnificent portrait of famous German composer Richard Wagner was created by Cäsar Willich in 1862. Somehow it’s a perfect fit for actor Huge Laurie. We wonder what he’s looking at with such awe.
A portrait of Sir Elton John
Dutch artist Rembrandt was a prolific painter and is, even hundreds of years after his death, considered to be one of the greatest visual artists to have ever lived. One of his many works included this portrait of an old lady, thought to be Aechje Claesdr. She wasn’t a particularly happy lady by the looks of it, but then she probably had to sit still for a long time to be painted like this. Elton John, on the other hand, loves being the center of attention.
Sir Edward Thomas Hardy
Tom Hardy certainly looks magnificent reimagined in oil painting form. The original portrait of Gaspard Schoppins dates back to around 1605 and somehow is the perfect fit for Hardy’s face.
Seth Rogan in a dress
It’s not actually too hard to believe that Seth Rogan would dress up like this. And he actually looks fantastic too.
Portrait of Lady-in-Waiting
We have a real soft spot for Emma Stone and somehow she’s even more magnificent as a Lady-in-Waiting circa 1625. Certainly looks like she’s up to more mischief than the original subject of the painting. We also enjoy how much effort the editor put into the Photoshopping too – even adding oil painting lines onto Emma’s face.
The Spanish Singer
Many of these artists have put a lot of effort into their image editing. It’s not just taking the original oil painting and popping a new head on the subject but also updating and enhancing the colours and surroundings. This original painting “The Spanish Singer” was crafted on canvas by Édouard Manet in 1860, then enhanced by CheapShotInc with the addition of Woody Harrelson.
Portrait de Steve Carrell
French painter François-Xavier Fabre crafted this fantastic portrait of Edward Fox Fitzgerald in 1815. Two centuries later Photoshop master Fichtenbrenner replaced his face with that of the hilarious Steve Carrell.
American Gothic with the Wests
A classic American painting dating back to 1930 shows a man and his daughter standing with a stern look on their faces, while holding a pitchfork outside their home. The amusingly Photoshopped version features an always stern-looking Kayne West and his wife Kim Kardashian.
Ryan Reynolds fits perfectly into the theme of these renaissance styled paintings. He certainly looks more fun-loving and cheeky than Baldassare Castiglione, the original subject of Raffaello Sanzio’s original painting.
The original painting was seen as one of the greats of the Renaissance period. But in our mind, the updated version is even more appealing.
Writing by Adrian Willings.