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Video and Scientific Photography

Archive for the ‘Micro Photography’ Category

This category deals with any image shot greater than life size.

Hover fly or syrphid fly portrait

Posted by wildwatertv on September 3, 2010

Extreme close up of the head of the syrphid or hover fly, Eupeodes luniger, showing the structure of the compound eyes.  My interest in these creatures seems to be growing, and I’m still struggling to get the absolute maximum detail available with transmitted light. The more I see of insects, the more I admire them. Stacked using 110 images taken with a Nikon 10x DIC objective using flash. Nikon D300. Modified Lomo microscope with a short tube.

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Microscopy as art

Posted by wildwatertv on August 20, 2010

A friend of mine, Julian Barton, suggested that microscopy could be used to produce artistic as well as scientific images.  Sort of landscapes within the miniature world.  There is a good history of this, with Spike Walker being represented by the Wellcome Institute at an exhibition recently of his electron micrographs.  This is my first attempt.  Greenbottles (Lucilla Caesar) have an amazing irridescent quality when you see them, and it is just about possible to reproduce this photographically.  These two pics are of the abdomen and thorax of a greenbottle.  I think I like the first one best, due to its cartoon like quality, but comments are appreciated.  Julian, I hope this is what you meant.  Taken through a light microscope using a Nikon 10xDIC objective with reflected flash light.

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House Fly’s mouth

Posted by wildwatertv on June 8, 2010

This creature is the common house fly, musca domestica. When you see them sitting on a piece of bread they are using that fearsome mouth to scrape and suck food from the bread, cheese, or anything else they might like…  It excretes a sort of liquid enzyme which digests the food on the surface before sucking the pre-digested liquid up though the tube.  These mouth-parts are always a bit grubby.  Pays to keep them off your food in the first place.  Now I’ve seen one up close I think I’ll be more careful.

Taken through a light microscope with a Nikon x10DIC .25 objective and stacked using a stack of thirty-four images.

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More eyes

Posted by wildwatertv on June 3, 2010


Sometimes you take a picture which makes you want to throw everything else you’ve ever done away and just simply admire the majesty of nature.  I’ve posted a blow-up of the central portion of this picture to show the perfection that exists on such a small scale.  Taken through a light microscope using a Nikon DI 10x objective and using a stack of fifty images, this is a different sort of hoverfly to the one below.  This one is called Eupeodes corollae.  One of the most common flies in the garden this time of year.  Wonderful creature!

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Hover Fly eyes

Posted by wildwatertv on May 28, 2010

This beast is the common hoverfly, Melascaeava cinctella.  It has excellent vision, and extremely well developed compound eyes.  This photograph also shows the three small simple eyes, or ocelli, arranged in a triangle between the two enormous compound eyes.  Photographic image stack using a Zeiss Luminar 25mm on a standard light microscope.

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Nigella seed

Posted by wildwatertv on January 22, 2010

This shows two different magnifications of a single seed, genus Nigella, known as love-in-a-mist.  The seeds are sometimes used in Indian cookery as a spice, and are individually about 1mm long.  they have the most extraordinary texture and a surface almost like crocodile skin. I’m working on a catalogue of microscopic images of seeds and this is so far the most beautiful one I’ve seen.  Zeiss Luminar, light microscope, Nikon 10x/2.5x Objective/photo-eyepiece.

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Vinyl record

Posted by wildwatertv on December 16, 2009

This is a photograph showing how the sound is made on a vinyl record.  The needle is made to vibrate as it runs along the grooves.  The more wobbly the line, the higher the pitch of the sound.  It was a great system, and vinyl is still favoured by many for the distinct tone it gives. This portion of the record is about 1mm long, so a split second of sound is all that is shown here.  Thanks to Thor Haugen for the idea (and the record).  It’s a pointer sisters track, by the way, I wonder which bit?

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Compound Eyes 3

Posted by wildwatertv on November 18, 2009

This is the closest I’ve got so far to anything.  Taken through a Swift Microscope with a Swift 10x objective and Nikon 2.5x Photo eyepiece, this is the same eye as in the post below but this time it’s plain that the structure of a wasp’s eye is made up of hexagonal elements.  the hexagons are not perfect, but the shape of the eye determines the shape they can be at any one point.  Lighting was achieved by the use of a tracing paper diffuser held around the objective with a rubber band and encircling the head of the wasp.  I’ve finally nearly got rid of chromatic aberrations at this magnification.

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Compound eyes 2

Posted by wildwatertv on November 9, 2009

waspeyeblog

This is the eye of a wasp.  Unlike bees they have clean compound eyes, very highly developed.  The structure is a honeycomb of hexagonal elements, which combine to form a rudimentary image.  They eyes cannot focus like human eyes, but they can see in most directions at the same time, which gives the insect a clear warning when anything approaches. Taken through a Swift Microscope with a 4x objective.

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The pen is mightier than the sword

Posted by wildwatertv on October 23, 2009

penblog

penblog2

Slightly more prosaic subject matter, but ballpoint pens are really a miracle of engineering.  When you use them they pick up small pieces of paper and fibres.  These eventually go inside the ball and clog up the mechanism, but considering the balls are far less than a millimetre in diameter it’s amazing they work so often.  I’ve spent all morning seeing the differences between brands and they vary enormously.  Lighting them is also a challenge.

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