Mesmerizing microscopy

I ordered a small microscopic attachment for my iPhone last week, although I could only find one which fitted an iPhone 5, so I had to break the cover off it and customise an attachment using double sided sellotape.

I first experimented by running it over the lichen which I had placed in a glass dome, and was instantly smitten with the results.  The surface of the yellow lichen was like something from an alien movie, with weird suckers and cups all over it, magnified to amazing clarity.

I decided to take it to Birnam Wood to put it to use over some of the tree bark and other surfaces. I took lots of footage by running the microscope over the surface of lichens, mosses, and even into pond water with tadpoles…it was so exciting to be able to see what was normally “invisible” without this ingenious device.

Some screen shots of some of the first footage I took above

Although I was really excited by this new magnifying tool, I was a bit disappointed that the lens was not aligned to suit the camera on my iPhone. As you can see above, part of the circle is cut off, which made me dissatisfied with the result. To improve the fit of the the microscope attachment, I cut the corners off the already trimmed plastic phone cover to which the microscope was attached, which gave me the freedom to move the microscope directly over the camera lens.

The position of the microscope was much better, and over the next few days I took a lot of footage in the wood, which was eventually edited to make a short film which I called “Otherworldly”, as I felt that this view of nature was so alien and “unknown” to me.  It doesn’t surprise me that many of the Romantic poets were inspired by what they saw through the lens of a microscope…a truly “sublime” experience for anyone to behold.

You can view the video by clicking on the link below:




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