Ants Painting by Chris Trueman

Painter Chris Trueman, from Claremont, California, uses 200,000 dead ants to paint a piece he calls “Self Portrait With a Gun”.

He bought the ants online, from a guy who was breeding and selling them as food for lizards.

First he ordered just 1,000 ants, because he didn’t know how many he would need for the right density, but then he started ordering in batches of 40,000. Each shipment of ants would cost $500.

Trueman then had to kill them using cotton balls soaked in nail polish remover - something the artist learned from the boy scouts - before painstakingly rearranging them into a picture using tweezers.

He then used tweezers to position each ant on to a sheet of Plexiglas, which was smeared in a layer of Galkyd resin.

The final piece, which measures 48ins by 42ins, was priced at a staggering £23,000 and was eventually sold to the U.S. franchise Ripley's Believe It or Not.

Trueman admitted that putting the picture together had been a challenge.

He said, "It took several years, not because of the actual labour, but because at one point I started to feel bad about killing all of the ants and I stopped the project for over a year. Then I decided that the first ants would have died in vain if I didn't finish the work so I decided to continue."

Check his blog:


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