Effortlessly balancing atop a paddleboard, street artist Sean Yoro (a.k.a. Hula) paints stunning murals whilst floating on the waves. His hyper-realistic work beautifully perches just above the sea’s surface.
Yoro grew up on the Hawaiian island of Oahu and spent most of his days on the ocean. The New York-based artist paddles out to paint his murals, all the while balancing his materials on his paddleboard, which doubles as a floating studio. His work was inspired by street art and the abandoned spaces that he uses as his hard-to-reach canvases. Made with traditional oil paint, each image can take up to four days to complete.
All of his portraits are hyper-realistic, as if each figure exists just above the tide. They reflect perfectly on the waves, extending the image out far from the painted surface. He began to paint the human body when he was 21, and now also uses cracked surfboards, along with sea walls, as a surface to paint his female portraits. Yoro is not only an accomplished painter; he is also a surfer.
Yoro says, ‘The original idea of the paintings sparked when I was shooting underwater portraits of women for some paintings early in 2014.’
‘I loved being in water and still working creatively, so the concept grew from there.’
Yoro hopes to create some more work in his current city and says, ‘I am working on getting permission for different walls around New York City; the bridges are definitely on my radar.’