Welsh artist Nathan Wyburn, who has created previous royal portraits out of everything from pizza to onesies, crafted his latest work out of a dirty 20-ft. carpet.
“I’m a huge fan of the royals and had been thinking of a way of celebrating Harry and Meghan’s engagement for a while,” Wyburn, 28 — who was commissioned to create the portrait by stain remover Dr. Beckmann — tells PEOPLE. “I basically just thought, ‘This is my golden opportunity.’ ”
Wyburn created the portrait by soiling the carpet with a thick mixture of mud, wine and coffee, then using the stain remover to create the image of the engaged couple.
“It was difficult to capture the scale of it, as we decided to do it quite big,” he says. “Little things like teeth were difficult to get too. Meghan was smiling in the photo, so I made sure her teeth were really, really white and that they stand out quite a lot. Things like facial hair on Harry, to get the brush strokes on that right were quite tough as well. But overall, I’m really pleased considering what it’s made of.”
Wyburn’s previous pieces include a burnttoast image of Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding balcony kiss and a pizza replica of the Queen. He also celebrated the announcement of Princess Charlotte by creating an image of William, Kate and their baby girl out of hundreds of clean onesies.
“There’s always been a bit of a royal touch to my work, and it’s brilliant to use something new and different,” adds Wyburn, whose portrait of Prince Charles — created from hundreds of photos of Prince’s Trust volunteers — was presented to the royal heir at the Trust’s 40th anniversary party.
“This is the first time I have ever done anything on a stained carpet, though,” he says. “It was quite unusual as I was kind of working in reverse — I obviously had to start with a black canvas rather than a blank canvas, then remove the shades rather than add them. So, it was quite an unusual thing to do.”
He adds, “The mixture also had a really strange smell to it as well!”
The big question, however, is just what the soon-to-be-married couple think of the artwork. While they are fans of modern art — Harry gifted Meghan an original piece called Everybody Needs Somebody To Love by rising British artist Van Donna in October 2016 — even Wyburn admits it’s unlikely his carpet will grace their Nottingham Cottage home any time soon.
“I have no plans to send it to them, but I definitely think they will see the quirkiness in it,” he says. “It is definitely quite a modern way of making art!”