A Single Drop of Seawater, Magnified 25 Times 

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You know when you’re horsing around at the beach and accidentally swallow a nasty gulp of salt water? Well I hate to break it to you but that foul taste wasn’t just salt. Photographer David Littschwager captured this amazing shot of a single drop of seawater magnified 25 times to reveal an entire ecosystem of crab larva, diatoms, bacteria, fish eggs, zooplankton, and even worms. Read more about what you probably don’t want to know at Dive Shield. We do admit the little crab larva in the lower right-hand corner is pretty darned cute. (via Lost at E Minor)

Update: Prints of this photograph are available at Art.com.

Update #2: Via JellyWatch, Littschwager offers a bit of clarification about the image.

Marine Microfauna – part of the contents of one dip of a hand net. The magnification was 2x life size, meaning that the actual frame size was a half inch high, so depending on how big the image is on your screen you can calculate the magnification as you see it. To keep as much focus as possible the sample is in as little water as possible just covering the bottom of a 60mm petri dish. That takes about 15 drops of water, but you are only seeing a very small portion of the total sample.

The slide was photographed aboard the NOAA Ship Oscar Elton Sette off Kona, September 20, 2006, and you can see a detailed listing of the wildlife on JellyWatch.

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Jaw-Dropping Pen and Ink Cityscapes That Seem to Sprawl into Infinity by Ben Sack 

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A Single Note / 48″ diameter, 150″ (12.5 feet) circumference

With meticulous determination and a steady hand, artist Ben Sack picks up a black 0.05 Staedtler pigment liner pen and begins to draw the dense, intricate details of fictional cityscapes: buildings, roads, rivers and bridges. He draws until the ink runs out and picks up another pen. And another. And another. Sapping the ink from dozens of writing utensils until several months later a canvas is complete. His most recent piece, a vast circular drawing titled A Single Note (top), has a 12.5 foot circumference. It staggers the mind.

The architecture found in Sack’s artwork spans centuries, from gothic cathedrals to towering skyscrapers, underpinned by patterns of urban sprawl reminiscent of European cities with a healthy dose of science fiction. If you look carefully you might even recognize a familiar landmark here and there. He shares as his influence some thoughts on “western antiquity”:

Its this sort of image that I think most people, if not all of society have of western antiquity; stainless marble facades, long triumphal avenues, monuments to glory. In actuality, the cities of the past were far from idealistic by today’s standards. Yes there was marble, lots of marble, and monuments galore, however these urban centers were huddled together and unless you were considerably wealthy, life in dreamy antiquity was often a heroic struggle. Though the societies of antiquity were bloody, dirty and corrupt the idea of antiquity has come to represent some resounding ideals in present society; democracy, justice, law and order, balance, symmetry. These ideals are now the foundation stones of our own civilization, a civilization that some distant future will perhaps honor as antiquity.

Sack graduated from the Virginia Commonwealth University in 2011 and has since had work numerous solo a group exhibitions, most recently at Ghostprint Gallery. And just this week he returned from a circumnavigation of the globe as part of a residence aboard the m/s Amsterdam. You can see more of his work on his website, and over on Tumblr. Prints are available here. (via Waxy.org, Laughing Squid)

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A Single Note, detail

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A Single Note, detail

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A Single Note, detail

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A Single Note, detail

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A Single Note, detail

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A Single Note, detail

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‘8-Bit Watercolors’ Explore the Intersection of Pop Culture and Retro Video Game Graphics 

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The Kiss

Inspired in part by the 8-bit graphics of old Atari and Nintendo video games from his youth, artist Adam Lister paints quirky watercolor interpretations of pop culture icons, art world happenings, and famous paintings. Trying to describe his style can be difficult as it’s not quite digital and it’s not quite Cubism (though maybe it’s a tad Etch A Sketch?). While all of Lister’s works are distinctly humorous, many are also strangely nostalgic, recalling moments from the recent past including comic book characters, Star Wars references, and even numerous interpretations of iconic TV painter Bob Ross.

Lister has several limited edition prints available on his website, and his work most recently appeared as part of a group show at Catalyst Gallery. He’s also turned several pieces into 3D printed objects. (via Yatzer, Huffington Post)

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Bob Ross

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Mona Lisa at the Louvre

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Mona Lisa

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The Selling of “The Scream”

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Wonder Woman

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A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte

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LIX: The World’s Smallest 3D Printing Pen Lets You Draw in the Air 

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LIX is the latest contender in the handheld 3D-printing field. Launched just a few hours ago on Kickstarter, the developers say the super compact design is smaller than any other pen on the market and it can even be powered by the electricity from a USB port. After turning it on the LIX takes less than a minute to heat up and you’re ready to start creating vertical illustrations. Via LIX:

LIX 3D printing pen has the similar function as 3D printers. It melts and cools coloured plastic, letting you create rigid and freestanding structures. Lix has a hot-end nozzle that is power supplied from USB 3.0 port. The plastic filament ABS/PLA is introduced in the upper extremity of Lix Pen. The filament goes through a patented mechanism while moving through the pen to finally reach the hot-end nozzle which melts and cools it down. An interesting fact about this light-weight, engineered pen is that these structures can be formed in any imaginable shape.

The LIX pen has a much sleeker form and a finer tip than similar devices we’ve seen like the 3Doodler, though it’s a bit more expensive. See more on their website. (via Mashable)

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“Not Available on the App Store” Stickers Remind Us There Isn’t an App for Everything 

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Three Hyper Island students (Caio Andrade, Rafael Ochoa, and Linn Livijn Wexell) dreamed up the idea of making “Not Available on the App Store” stickers as a friendly reminder to get kids away from the screen and into the real world. Stickers are available for purchase or you can make your own. Purchased!

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