Squashed mosquito pictures
People sometimes have quite strange hobbies or occupations. What would you say if we told you about a man making pictures of squashed mosquitos, maggots, ticks and other crawling creatures?
Meet Volker Steger – freelance science photographer from Munich, Germany, producer of features for popular science magazines worldwide.
Mr. Steger is using scanning electron microscope to take his pictures. In order to be photographed, insects have to be dead and free of water, because the water can disrupt the electron beam if it evaporates in the vacuum chamber. Later the dead dry bugs are coated with a conductive metal alloy, mostly platinum. They have to be electrically conductive so the electron beam can scan the surface without causing them to charge up.
And finally the black and white pictures from scanning electron microscope are colored. As Mr. Steger says, he “tries to pick colors that look good and that don't appear “natural,” but are not gaudy“. But here comes the problem, as people usually perceive those colors to be natural while they are fake.
We hope you will enjoy those incredible images of squashed mosquitos as we did.
Volker Steger was awarded a 2000 Visuell award for science photography, a 2000 Award of the German Press for science photography, and a 1996 LEICA award for science photography. To see other images, visit his web site at www.stegerphoto.com