Polish Scientist’s Incredible Photographs of Microscopic Creatures
Photographer Igor Siwanowicz took these incredible photographs of tiny creatures. Dr Siwanowicz, a neurobiologist at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Janelia Farm Research Campus, Virginia, shows us the wonders of life in kaleidoscopic color.
“Laser scanning confocal microscope produces images in a very different way than a bright field microscope (your standard biology class microscope). It is a fluorescent microscope, which means that the imaged specimen is illuminated with light of a certain wavelength and emits light of a different, longer wavelength. It’s the same physical phenomenon that makes black light posters from the ’70s-‘80s glow. The microscope, which registers that light, takes a series of images of the tiny specimen by scanning it point by point. Because the specimen is much thicker than the plane of focus, a series of images—called “stack”—is collected by moving the sample up or down. From those “optical slices” a three-dimensional image of the structures within the sample can be reconstructed,” he explains.