There are plenty of ways to carry a little bit of nature with you, but the tiny worlds created by Akinobu Izumi might just be the cutest. The Japanese artist makes architectural models by day, but after work hours those model-building skills are put to even better use making super-small paper sculptures and embedding them in tiny glass bottles.
The beautiful scenes Izumi invents depict everything from Christmas trees to sea and land animals to prehistoric creatures. There are even little boats and ships, bringing to mind the classic ship-in-a-bottle art projects enjoyed by many weekend hobbyists.
The itty-bitty figures are made of paper and held in place with clear or colored resin, giving the entire scene an otherworldly floating appearance. The bases and backgrounds are usually made of clay. Because of the fragile nature of the glass bottles Izumi advises against carrying or wearing the little worlds, but it seems almost impossible to imagine owning something this sweet and not wearing it around to show to the entire life-size world.
Izumi’s Etsy shop TinyWorldInABottle showcases his incredible miniature works of art, letting anyone own a magical little world of his or her very own.