You probably heard of pet rock before or the Pet Rock collective toys. However there has nothing on the hand painted animals stones painted by Japanese artist Akie Nakata.
Nakata uses his artistic skills to transform rocks he found into handheld animal sculptures that look like real-life miniature animals. Nakata’s favorite childhood pastime was collecting all sorts of rocks, however in 2011 he started experimenting by painting on them. Her animal painting was first inspired when she came across a stone which she thought looked just like a rabbit. “Stones have their own intentions and I consider my encounters with them as cues to go ahead and paint what I see on them.”
To the day she has created an entire zoo of stone animals. Nakata has designed several animals from domestic animals like cats and dogs to wildlife like cheetahs and gorillas. What makes it even more special is that she choses an animal to paint that suits the contours of the rock.
Before starting her paintings, Nakata asks herself, “Am I positioning the backbone in the right place? Does it feel right? Am I forcing something that disagrees with the natural shape of the stone?” After deciding what animal fits the best shape of the rock she starts using acrylic paint to make her idea a reality.
With her immense talent and skills, she creates lifelike eyes, fur, feathers, little noses, whiskers, and more. Once her animal she painted begins starting back at her, she knows that its time to put down the paint brush. “To me, completing a piece of work is not about how much detail I draw, but whether I feel the life in the stone.”