macro

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with macro



Photography

Eye of the Spider: Hypnotizing Macro Photos of Exotic Spiders Staring Directly into Your Mind

January 23, 2014

Christopher Jobson

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Like hairy aliens from another planet, these tiny spiders seem to stare with giant, all-knowing eyes into your very soul. Whether they possess otherworldly secrets or a desire to attack your face is open to interpretation. Regardless, photographer Jimmy Kong has done an incredible job capturing these intimate moments with diverse arthropods found in his native Malaysia. What you see here is just a taste of his macro work that also involves insects, reptiles and other creepy crawly things. See more on Flickr. (via the Colossal Flickr Pool)

 

 



Art Photography

All You Can Feel: Images of Recreational Drugs Exposed to Film Negatives by Sarah Schoenfeld

December 22, 2013

Christopher Jobson

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Cocaine

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Caffeine

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Crystal Meth

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Ecstasy

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Adrenaline

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LSD

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Magic

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Whether you’ve tried mind-altering substances or not one thing remains true: we all have an idea of what a drug feels like, be it imagined, anecdotal, or from direct exposure. So what might the effect of a drug look like? That was the question asked by artist Sarah Schoenfeld who had ample exposure to the realities of drugs while working in a Berlin nightclub. To answer the question she converted her photography studio into a laboratory and exposed legal and illegal liquid drug mixtures to film negatives. The resulting chemical reactions were then greatly magnified into large prints to form a body of work titled All You Can Feel.

These final, otherworldly images of heroin, cocaine, MDMA, and other substances explore a relationship between photography, alchemy, pharmacy and psychology. One can’t help but draw parallels between Schoenfeld’s photos and the perceived effects of various narcotics, be it the sharp, electrified ball of Ketamine or the cold, isolated sphere of LSD, while others look like unstable tectonic plates, a continent on the verge of destruction.

All You Can Feel is now available as a book through Kerber Press, and a collection of images were on view as part of a group show, It Is Only A State of Mind at Heidelberger Kunstverein in Heidelberg through February 2, 2014. You can also read an interview with Schoenfeld over on Kaltblut. If you liked this, also check out Vanishing Spirits by Ernie Button. (via It’s Nice That)

 

 



Photography

Macro Bee Portraits by Sam Droege and the USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab

December 20, 2013

Christopher Jobson

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Courtesy Sam Droege / USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab

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Courtesy Sam Droege / USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab

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Courtesy Sam Droege / USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab

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Courtesy Sam Droege / USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab

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Courtesy Sam Droege / USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab

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Courtesy Sam Droege / USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab

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Courtesy Sam Droege / USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab

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Courtesy Sam Droege / USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab

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Courtesy Sam Droege / USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab

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Courtesy Sam Droege / USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab

Sam Droege is the head of the USGS Native Bee Inventory and Monitoring Program in Maryland, an organization that monitors the health and habitat of bees in the U.S. as well as creating archival reference catalogs that aid researchers in the identification of bee species in North America. The project is no small task as there are literally thousands of bee species in the U.S., some of which vary in only the most minute ways that may not even be distinguishable to the naked eye.

To aid in the identification process the USGS Bee Inventory relies on extremely high resolution photography, an initiative led by Droege that has been ongoing since 2010. Droege’s macro photos of bees are so clear and well executed that they practically pass as works of art in their own right. He shares with Flickr:

“When we started looking at these pictures, I just wanted to gaze at these shots for long periods of time,” Sam says. “I had seen these insects for many years, but the level of detail was incredible. The fact that everything was focused, the beauty and the arrangement of the insects themselves — the ratios of the eyes, the golden means, the french curves of the body, and the colors that would slide very naturally from one shade to another were just beautiful! It was the kind of thing that we could not achieve at the highest level of art.”

You can see many more of these bee portraits (as well as photos of other insects and even animals) over on Flickr. (via Daring Fireball, Flickr)

 

 



Photography Science

Animal Earth: New Photos Exploring the Diversity of the World’s Most Obscure Species

October 29, 2013

Christopher Jobson

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Segmentation, a distinguishing feature of the annelids is clearly visible here. Photo by Alexander Semenov.

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Nudibranchs, together with a huge variety of other marine mollusks, are commonly known as sea slugs (Coryphella polaris). Photo by Alexander Semenov.

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Many tube-dwelling polychaetes have elaborate, colorful tentacles for filter feeding and gas exchange. The funnel-shaped structure (operculum) seals the tube when the animal retreats inside (unidentified serpulid). Photo by Alexander Semenov.

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The compound eyes of a cynipid wasp (unidentified species). Some insects have simple eyes in addition to compound eyes, three of which can be seen on the top of this wasp’s head. Photo by Tomas Rak.

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The spherical test and impressive spines of a sea urchin. Coelopleurus floridanus. The mobile spines offer protection from predators. Since this species lives in relatively deep water, the purpose of the bright pigments in the skin and underlying skeleton is unknown. Photo by Arthur Anker.

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A jellyfish (Bougainvillia superciliris) with a hitchhiking amphipod (Hyperia galba). Photo by Alexander Semenov.

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In the cnidarians, what looks like a single individual is often a colony of polyps with specialized functions. In this floating colony (Porpita sp.) there are polyps for providing buoyancy, feeding (tentacles), digestion and reproduction. Photo by Arthur Anker.

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The colors and patterns of the sea slugs warn predators of their toxicity. This nudibranch is Chromodoris annulata. Photo by Arthur Anker.

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A sea angel, Clione limacine. In this image the grasping tentacles and chitinous hooks are retracted. Photo by Alexander Semenov.

We’ve all grown up learning about familiar animals like fish, tigers, elephants and bears, but this new book from Ross Piper takes the opposite approach: exploring the diversity in size, shape and color of the world’s most obscure and rarely seen organisms. With photography from Alexander Semenov, Arthur Anker, and other animal specialists and researchers, the 320-page Animal Earth promises to open your eyes to a variety of truly bizarre species from deepest oceans and the most adverse climates. The book is set to be published mid-November from Thames & Hudson.

 

 



Art

Cymatics: Stunning Macro Footage of Lycopodium Powder on a Stereo Speaker

September 11, 2013

Christopher Jobson

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Directed and produced by Susie Sie in conjunction with CypherAudio, this short clip titled Cymatics shows what happens when when lycopodium powder (a highly flammable substance composed of clubmoss spores) sits on top of a vibrating stereo speaker. Shot at various angles with a 100mm macro lens it’s easy to mistake the footage for something digital, something the artist has explored previously with other materials in her videos Silk and Emergence. Recommend full-screen for this one.

 

 



Photography

Explosions in the Sky: Macro Photographs of Fireworks by Nick Pacione

August 29, 2013

Christopher Jobson

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This last 4th of July Dallas-based photographer Nick Pacione camped out below a firework show and captured these awesome shots using a macro lens. He used a special rack focus technique that changes focus during the exposure to create some wonderfully abstract images that at times don’t even look like fireworks. See more from Explosions in the Sky, and if you liked this also check out the work of David Johnson.

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Photography

The Most Beautifully Terrifying Spiders You Never Knew Existed

August 2, 2013

Christopher Jobson

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Mirror Spider / Thwaitesia sp. / Singapore


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Long Horned Orb Weaver / Macracantha arcuata / Singapore

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Bird Dung Spider / Pasilobus sp. / Singapore

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Ladybird Mimic / Paraplectana sp. / Singapore

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Eight-Spotted Crab Spider / Platythomisus octomaculatus / Singapore

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Tree Stump Orb Weaver / Poltys illepidus / Singapore

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Net-Casting Ogre-Face Spider / Deinopis sp. / Singapore

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Ant Mimic Jumping Spider / Myrmarachne plataleoides / Singapore

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Wide-Jawed Viciria Spiderlings / Viciria praemandibularis / Singapore

Wow! Ick. Oooh. Whaaaaaaat. No. No. NOPE. That pretty much summarizes my reactions while looking at these incredible macro shots of spiders photographed by Nicky Bay who lives and works in Singapore. The boundless biodiversity found on the country’s several islands includes a vast array of insects and arachnids, many of which Bay has painstakingly documented up close with his macro photography and published on his blog and Flickr account.

Despite being creepy crawly spiders, it’s impossible to deny the endless creativity employed by evolution to create such amazing creatures. It’s hard to believe these lifeforms came from the same planet let alone the same country. For instance the Mirror Spider has an abdomen of reflective panels that glitter like a disco ball, or the various colors of Ladybird Mimic spiders that are almost indistinguishable from the insects they are camouflaged to look like. But there’s also the more frightening Two-Tailed Spider or the Bird Dung Spider that would have me scrambling for a frying pan and a quart of poison before I would even consider picking up a camera.

Nadia Drake over at Wired put together an informative gallery of Bay’s work along with a bit more detail than you’ll find here. All images above courtesy the photographer. (via Coudal)