These hyper-realistic photos are actually oil paintings

Story highlights

Nigerian artist Oresegun Olumide is taking the internet by storm

His artwork is so realistic that it's hard to believe they're not photographs

He uses water as a recurring theme and paints people from his local community

CNN  — 

Water droplets slide down the faces of children as they stare directly at what you could easily believe is a camera.

In fact, they are all paintings by Lagos-born Nigerian artist Oresegun Olumide.

The hyperrealism created in the oil paintings makes his work seem so life like that it is hard to believe they aren’t.

Olumide girl water

With over 18.7k followers and counting on Instagram, his work is fast gaining momentum online.

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Water is a recurring theme in his art because according to a popular adage in his native Yoruba language, “water has no enemy,” Olumide told CNN.

Oresegun Olumide photo

The use of water gives a translucent effect and, he says, is “why it’s difficult for many people to do.”

Olumide pushes himself to create art that his community hasn’t seen before and that is challenging for him.

He became interested in art at the age of four and started professionally creating art in 2005, Olumide said.

The 35-year-old majored in Fine Art at the Yaba College of Technology , Lagos, graduating with a distinction.

Drawing inspiration from his community, he is creating pieces that reflect the lives of those around him.

His work, he says, is “a gradual process,” taking around two to three weeks to create individual pieces.

“And depending on the intricacy I want to achieve, it can take a couple of months,” he added.

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