If your hobbies range from food to art to science, they might seem incompatible at first – not to Caren Alpert, though, who combined all of those and presented some stunning microscopic food photographs. The series, called Terra Cibus, were created with an electron microscope, which helps to reveal the side of our food we don’t normally get to see.


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A San Francisco-based fine art and commercial photographer says that she was first attracted to microscope photographs because of their mystery and familiarity at the same time. “This medium deconstructs, abstracts, and reveals the ordinary in a riveting way,” explains Caren and goes on to say that eventually she started seeing both the food and the consumers as a part of a larger ecosystem.

To be more specific, the artist used the scanning electron microscope (SEM). It is a type of electron microscope that produces images of a sample by scanning it with a focused beam of electrons. The electrons interact with electrons in the sample, producing various signals that can be detected and that contain information about the sample’s surface topography and composition. The range of magnification may range from 30x to as high as 500,000x.

Caren is currently having an exhibition of her work at the Citigroup Center in New York which will be available till November 31st.

Website: carenalpertfineart.com

Blueberry: 19x Magnification

Chocolate Cake: 320x Magnification

Purple Onion: 230x Magnification

Shrimp Tail: 230x Magnification

Sugar in the Raw: 15x Magnification

Star Anise: 14x Magnification

Red Cabbage: 27x Magnification

Red Licorice: 20x Magnification

Banana Skin: 210x Magnification

Table Salt: 45x Magnification

Fortune Cookie: 150x Magnification

Kiwi Seed: 320x Magnification

Coffee Bean: 80x Magnification

Sun-Dried Tomato: 250x Magnification

Lifesaver: 17x Magnification

Raisin: 35x Magnification

Pop Tart: 450x Magnification

Vitamin C: 50x Magnification

French’s Fried Onion: 300x Magnification

Oreo: 15x Magnification

Cake Sprinkles: 65x Magnification

See more photos made with electron microscope: here