Published Apr 20. 1995 - 21 years ago

Art flies | fly art

There are a couple of new pictures in this section. I have once again experimented with the unknown and hidden beauty in the flies and materials that we use - aspects that can be brought out through computer manipulation.

Please notice that this is a very old article dating back from 1995. Doing fly images has changed quite a bit since as you can read in this recent article, and considering 30 and 90 kilobyte images as large is a result of this article being written in an era where slow modems were the standard.

There are a couple of new pictures in this section. I have once again experimented with the unknown and hidden beauty in the flies and materials that we use - aspects that can be brought out through computer manipulation.

Humble experiments

On this page I present my humble experiments with flies and computers. I've tried getting pictures of flies into the computer in many ways including drawing them, scanning photos and scanning the flies themselves. Actually the last method is my preferred, and if I want to work in B/W I always scan the fly directly. If you want to know more about this method and the process of making the pictures, see below.

Large files

To see the pictures shown here in greater detail, click on the one you want. Please note the the pictures are quite large and detailed (500*500 pixels in 256 colors) and range from 30 KB to over 90 KB. Again, they can take some time to transfer, so have patience.

Fluo Umbrella

Caddis

9caddis

Weaver

Bartleet 2

Bartleet 1

Martin Joergensen

How you can get some very good fly pictures without using an expensive SLR camera or a macro lens.

The flat bed scanner is actually just a large format digital camera. It has a very little depth of sharpness, but on the other hand an absolutely accepable resolution. It will not compare to a good SLR with a slow slide film, but it can do some fine pictures of solid 3D objects - including flies.

Extremely simple

Actually scanning the flies is extremely simple. It came about as a result of a feeble try to get some rough photographs into some small booklets that I\'ve been making. I tried having prints made from slides because my scanner only handles reflection originals. They fell out very bad, and I didn\'t use them.
I also tried color prints, but never really was satisfied with the quality compared to slides.
So as a substitute I just put the flies in the scanner and... Eureka! It worked. And not only does it work, it actually looks very good.

Amazing results

The scans used for the Fly Art above are mostly scanned in 256 shades of gray and a resolution of 3-600 dpi, while many of the real flies are scanned in lower resolution and less levels of grey -- as low as 16.
The results can be amazing, but only in B/W. Colors go berserk because my scanner uses three lamps and this gives a very strange 3D, multicolor effect. But for my use this simple method has worked until now. Even heavily hackled flies and flies with lots of volume, beads, eyes etc. seem to go
though the squishing process very well.

Finishing off

Many of the scans have been edited, retouched or heavily manipulated in a photo editing program, of which I use Picture Publisher and sometimes LView Pro.
After this retouching the pictures can be finished, but sometimes I import them into Corel Draw for further work. In all cases I end up exporting them in the proper size and color depth for use in these pages.


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