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World of the Bizarre

Artist can draw entire cities from memory

By T.K. Randall
April 18, 2018 · Comment icon 7 comments

Stephen can draw whole landscapes off the top of his head. Image Credit: YouTube / Stephen Wiltshire
Stephen Wiltshire, who was diagnosed with autism at the age of three, is one of the world's most skilled artists.
Despite not saying his first word until the age of five, Stephen was able to sketch stunningly realistic drawings of animals as well as caricatures of his teachers while he was still at school.

Today he is a world-famous artist who draws incredibly detailed cityscapes with a seemingly impossible level of precision. What makes this even more remarkable is the fact that he does it almost entirely from memory, having often viewed the subject of the drawing only a single time.
In New York, for instance, he was able to fill a 19ft sheet of paper with a highly detailed drawing of the entire Manhattan landscape after only a single 20-minute helicopter ride over the city.

His panoramas are regarded so highly in fact that thousands of people often come to see him work and several time-lapse videos of his creations have gone viral online.

One of these, which shows him drawing Singapore over the course of five days, can be viewed below.



Source: National Geographic | Comments (7)




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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by I'mConvinced 6 years ago
Insane. Having the perfect recall is astounding in itself, then having the talent to produce amazing art from that visualisation process is even more so.
Comment icon #2 Posted by Stiff 6 years ago
As above. It's a good job he's been filmed as if you were to explain to this to someone in words, they simply wouldn't believe you! Outstanding.
Comment icon #3 Posted by Skulduggery 6 years ago
That's pretty amazing! If I remember correctly, singer/songwriter Wesley Willis used to do this (when he was alive).
Comment icon #4 Posted by ChaosRose 6 years ago
I saw a show about him. It's amazing!
Comment icon #5 Posted by Hankenhunter 6 years ago
That's a pretty wild talent. And he can support himself with it. eidetic memory+eidetic artistic talent+ autism = a snapshot showing the future of human evolution in a flawed mind? If we could tap that (if we dont extinct ourselves first) for all of mankind.....?! Mind=blown. Hank
Comment icon #6 Posted by Seti42 6 years ago
He's a living camera. But can he create imagery just using his imagination? I'd be curious to see drawings from his dreams, or fictitious cityscapes only described in books.
Comment icon #7 Posted by Susanc241 6 years ago
I remember seeing an item about him on a news magazine show when he was about ten. He was incredible. Taken on a trip around Parliament Square in London he then produced an accurate picture of the Houses of Parliament, and if any building has a lot of detail in it, that one has. As an amateur portrait artist who also works only in pencil I am green!


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