These Dazzling Etch-A-Sketch Portraits Take 150 Hours To Make

Photo: George Vlosich / GVArt & Design

When one of Mitt Romney’s aides likened the Republican presidential hopeful to an Etch-A-Sketch, artist George Vlosich stepped up to the plate and drew this stunning portrait of Romney on the classic toy. (Click to enlarge it so you can see the detail.)

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Vlosich has been doing Etch-A-Sketch art for 20 years—much of it in the advertising business—and has created incredibly detailed portraits of President Obama, the Beatles, Tiger Woods and Jay-Z.

Each one takes about 150 hours to make, and sells for between $5,000 and $10,000.

And yes, Vlosich has figured out a way to stop it from disappearing if you shake it.

First, you should know that Vlosich's Etch-A-Sketch art is completely real. He's just better at it than the rest of us.

You can follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

He got started 20 years ago when his family took a trip to Washington, D.C., and his father gave him an Etch-A-Sketch to kill the time in the car.

This is George, left, and his brother Greg on that trip.

This is the first picture George drew. His father was so amazed he took a photo to preserve it.

He copied it from a tourist leaflet. 'I showed my parents and they were like, 'Oh my gosh' … my dad pulled over to a gas station to take a picture. He figured it would get erased.'

He's better at it now.

This time-lapse video shows how Vlosich creates his images using just a single line.

'They're in Bryan, Ohio, and I'm in Cleveland, Ohio, it's about two hours away,' Vlosich says.

Now the company sends him as many Etch-A-Sketches as he wants. He's done commercial work for Disney and ad agency Goodby, Silverstein & Partners.

Vlosich begins by making a preparatory sketch on paper.

Then he shakes the device really hard to make sure the drawing surface is flawless. Sometimes he rejects a screen in favour of a new one.

Then, he draws the major features of the picture on the Etch-A-Sketch.

To get from one area of the picture to another he traces over existing lines. What looks like one line might be 20 lines on top of each other.

When he's done, Vlosich removes the back of the Etch-A Sketch and lets the aluminium powder fall out. This prevents the powder from erasing the scratches made on the underside of the glass, and the etched image becomes permanent as a result.

Sometimes his Etch-A-Sketches are turned into more elaborate pieces ...

... like this one of Muhammad Ali.

This one became a wall-sized mural ...

... in this office.

And here he is with Will Smith.

He has yet to receive an invitation to visit Romney, however.

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