insects

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Photography

Masked Figures Found in Macro Insect Photography by Pascal Goet

July 14, 2016

Kate Sierzputowski

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Using subtle changes in light and shadow, French photographer Pascal Goet subtly manipulates the details of a variety of insects, highlighting their anthropomorphic appearance. Goet does not alter any of the colors associated with the brilliantly hued bugs, but instead focuses on letting areas of the body fade away or become more pronounced. Through this process faces emerge, a human reflection in an otherwise unrelatable species. This aspect is especially pronounced when printed quite large for exhibitions, where the audience has their own face come into contact with an imitation of one.

“An authenticity is vital for my involvement in this work,” said Goet to Colossal. “The large size prints create a genuine encounter between the viewer and these amazing personages, people of a parallel world.”

Goet has been shooting macro photography for the past 26 years. He had a solo exhibition of this work earlier this year at Paris-based Blin Plus Blin simply titled “Mask.” You can see more images of this series on his website. (via Colossal Submissions)

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Photography

Magical Photographs of Fireflies from Japan’s 2016 Summer

July 7, 2016

Johnny Waldman

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Photo by Yu Hashimoto.

Each year when summer comes along, we all look forward to different things. Some of us head to the beach, others to the mountains for camping. Some look forward to the epicurean delights like watermelon and ice cones. But for a select group of photographers in Japan, Summer signals the arrival of fireflies. And for very short periods – typically May and June, from around 7 to 9pm – these photographers set off to secret locations all around Japan, hoping to capture the magical insects that light up the night.

One thing that makes these photographs so magical is that they capture views that the naked eye is simply incapable of seeing. The photographs are typically composites, meaning that they combine anywhere from 10 to 200 of the exact same frame. That’s why it can look like swarms of thousands of fireflies have invaded the forest, when in reality it’s much less. But that’s not to discount these photographs, which require insider knowledge, equipment, skill and patience.

Fireflies live for only about 10 days and they’re extremely sensitive. They react negatively to any form of light and pollution, making finding them half the battle. Here, we present to you some a selection of our favorites from the 2016 summer season. (Syndicated from Spoon & Tamago)

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Photo by fumial.

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Photo by Yasushi Kikuchi.

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Photo by soranopa.

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Photo by miyu.

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Photo by hm777.

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Photo by hm777.

 

 



Illustration

Double Exposure Tattoos by Andrey Lukovnikov

June 23, 2016

Christopher Jobson

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Tattoo artist Andrey Lukovnikov has been producing a series of tattoos reminiscent of multiple exposure photography where several images are superimposed to create a single image—or perhaps the digital equivalent, clipping masks as used in Photoshop or Illustrator. Colorfully lush backdrops of flowers are ‘clipped’ by the outlines of large insects or birds, creating a visual window into another scene. The Wroclaw-based tattooer shares photos and videos of his latest pieces on Facebook. (via Illusion)

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Craft Design

New Winged Insects Constructed from Video Game and Computer Components

June 2, 2016

Christopher Jobson

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Before old circuit boards find their way to the landfill, Portsmouth, UK-based artist Julie Alice Chappell gives them new life as winged insects. Tearing the boards from old computers and video game systems she cuts and sculpts them into crawly creatures that resemble butterflies, dragonflies and even cockroaches. The upcycled bugs are further adorned with other electrical components that form various appendages. Each piece is one-of-a-kind and she sells them through her Etsy shop.

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Photography Science

Macro Photographs Composed of Nearly Ten Thousand Images Show the Incredible Detail of Insect Specimens

April 26, 2016

Kate Sierzputowski

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All images provided by Levon Biss

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Commercial photographer Levon Biss typically shoots portraits of world-class athletes—sports players caught in motion. His new series however, catches subjects that have already been paused, insect specimens found at the Oxford Museum of Natural History. The series originally started as a side-project capturing the detail of bugs that his son would catch at home, and is now displayed at the museum in an exhibition titled Microsculpture.

During the course of his selection from the museum’s collection Biss rejected more than 99% of the bugs he came across, only choosing those that were of the right size and color. To capture these subjects in such immense detail, each part of the insect required a completely different lighting setup.

“I will photograph an antenna and light that antenna so it looks as best as it possibly can,” said Biss. “Once I move onto the next section, for example the eye, the lighting will change completely. I work my way across the whole body of the insect until I end up with 30 different sections, each photographed individually.”

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Working in this comprehensive manner required between 8,000 and 10,000 shots for each final image, moving the camera just ten microns (1/7th of the width of a human hair) between each shot. With this volume of imagery, it takes over two weeks for Biss to complete each photograph start to finish.

You can see Microsculpture through October 30th at the Oxford University Museum of Natural History where the images are displayed next to their actual specimens. In case you can’t make it to the UK, you can take a detailed look at all 22 of Biss’s images on his interactive Microsculpture website. (via PetaPixel)

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Art

Edouard Martinet’s Masterfully Sculpted Animals and Insects Made from Bicycle, Car, and Motorcycle Parts

April 25, 2016

Christopher Jobson

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Robin. Bronze, one of an edition of 12 copies, 22 x 32 x 18 cm. LEGS: springs , pieces of costume jewellery; BODY: children’s tricycle fender; FEATHERS: hood ornament of a Citroen; WINGS: petrol tank plates of a 50s motorcycle Monet-Goyon, bike chain guards; TAIL: car part, motorcycle decoration; EYES: marbles; HEAD: two seed scoops, ornaments for bike lights; BEAK: autoscope part, bike ornament.

French artist Edouard Martinet assembles faithful interpretations of birds, crustaceans, insects, and other creatures with countless objects from discarded bicycles, cars, and household objects. A bicycle pump forms the abdomen of a dragonfly, windshield wipers serve as the legs of a fly, or the metal logos of a bicycle manufacturer are layered to create the dense scales of a fish. All the more incredible considering Martinet never welds or solders his pieces, but instead uses only screws or fasteners, selecting only the perfect components that “fit” each assemblage like a puzzle. From Sladmore Contemporary:

What sets Martinet’s work apart is the brilliant formal clarity of his sculptures, and their extraordinary elegance of articulation. His degree of virtuosity is unique: he does not solder or weld parts. His sculptures are screwed together. This gives his forms an extra level of visual richness – but not in a way that merely conveys the dry precision of, say, a watchmaker. There is an X-Factor here, a graceful wit, a re-imagining of the obvious in which a beautifully finished object glows not with perfection, but with character, with new life.

Martinet will open a new exhibition of work at Sladmore Contemporary in London starting May 5th, 2016.

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Dragonfly, 115 x 54 x 80 cm. ABDOMEN: bicycle pump; THORAX: four bike rear lights, two small car lights, big upholstery tacks , gas cap, ball furniture casters; HEAD: two old bike headlights, inside round sunglasses, shoe tree parts, parts of a daisy wheel for typewriter (hair from the mouth), under the head parts of acetylene bike lights; LEGS: tubes, bike cable guide, wing nuts, cream chargers; WINGS: umbrella ribs, fencing wire, aluminium metal mesh.

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Dragonfly, detail.

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Fly, 47 x 40 x 27 cm. LEGS : windshield wiper arms, bike brakes, bike chains, small typewriter parts; HEAD: motor vehicle rear light; PROBOSCIS: car hood hinge; ANTENNAE: ski boot fasteners; THORAX: motorbike headlight; On the top : 50’s kitchen utensil. WINGS: the glass is set in a windscreen brush holder, the wing ribs are made with soldering wire; ABDOMEN: motorbike headlight, part of ceiling lamp.

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Fly, detail.

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Toad

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Sardine, 25 x 70 x 11 cm. BODY: Moped chain guard covered with multiple bicycle logo badges; HEAD: Solex front fenders, car bumpers. EYES: Flashlights; GILLS: Car door parts, bicycle chain guards. TAIL: Motorbike exhaust pipe; FINS: Cake tins.

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Sardine, detail.

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Black Swift, 45 x 20 x 17 cm. LEGS: springs, pieces of costume jewellery; BODY: silver sauce jug; WINGS and FEATHERS: petrol tank plates of a 50s Villier motorcycle, bike chain guards, scooter decoration; TAIL: car decoration; EYES: metal balls; HEAD: one seed scoop, bike headlight; BEAK: dental forceps.

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Black Swift, detail.

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Praying Mantis, 104 x 50 x 74 cm. ABDOMEN: bike fender, car ventilator and ski boots fasteners; WINGS: rear lights of a Peugeot 404; HEAD: two moped indicators; TOP FORELEGS: car mirror handles, ham slicers, nutcracker handles, spaghetti tongs; FOR ALL THE LEGS: the ends are parts from bike brakes plus a bit of bike chain; THE OTHER LEGS: windshield wiper arms, aluminium tubes; THORAX: car bumper, car mirror handles.

 

 



Science

When Given Colored Construction Paper, Wasps Build Rainbow Colored Nests

April 6, 2016

Christopher Jobson

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It’s unnerving to discover a wasp’s nest dangling outside your house, but perhaps it would be a tad less so with the help of biology student Mattia Menchetti who cleverly realized he could give colored construction paper to a colony of European paper wasps. By gradually providing different paper shades, the wasps turned their homes into a functional rainbow of different colors. This isn’t the first time scientists have encountered insects producing colorful materials with the aid of artificial coloring. In 2012, residue from an M&M plant caused local bees to make blue and green honey, and a similar—though admittedly more tragic—incident involving bees and the dye used in Maraschino cherries occured recently in New York. You can see more of Menchetti’s experiment on his website. (via Booooooom)

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