Extreme Close-Ups Reveal Ethereal Beauty Beneath Our Feet

When you walk along a beach, you may think the sand beneath your feet is made of nothing but tiny ocean-worn rocks. But scientist/artist Dr. Gary Greenberg sees countless treasures. By putting grains of sand under his microscope and magnifying them to over 250 times their normal size, Greenberg reveals that these tiny pebbles are actually stunningly beautiful little works of art.

These delicate little treasures are so surprising because of their complexity and uniqueness. Especially if you expect sand to be nothing more than little brown and white rocks, seeing that it is actually composed of otherworldly-looking crumbs of shells, crystals and stones is quite a revelation.

According to Dr. Greenberg, he has developed a special technique for photographing these minuscule masterpieces. To overcome the normally shallow depth of field associated with extreme close-up photography, he takes many photographs from different focal points and then combines them with special software. His amazing body of work includes photographs of sand from beaches all around the world.

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See more in Earth & Nature or under Science. July, 2011.