Andy Bell, a senior at Metropolitan State College of Denver, told The Denver Post he started the portrait, called "Fear Itself," when he first heard that Zimmerman shot Martin in what the shooter says was self-defense.
"I wanted to do all I could to raise awareness about the case," he said.
Bell said he used 12,250 red, green, yellow and orange Skittles to recreate the much-seen mug shot of Zimmerman. He said his wife and friends helped him glue the candies to the 36- by 48-inch piece of plywood.
"It became family puzzle night," he said.
The portrait was on display at the Redline Gallery in Denver, where Executive Director PJ D'Amico said the work is a "crazy, terribly beautiful piece," that is "profound beyond measure."