'I'm always looking for the Hows and the Whys and the Whats,' said Muskrat, 'That is why I speak as I do. You've heard of Muskrat's Much-in-Little, of course?'
'No,' said the child. 'What is it?'
- The Mouse and his Child. Russell Hoban.

Go here to find out more.

Thursday, 12 January 2012

There's Art in Alcohol

Once you have seen the wonderful blue of copper sulphate crystals, you could never forget it, I think. I remember growing big crystals in chemistry at school.

Here are some fabulous views of sugar crystalline structures using a 1,000 time magnification microscope. A wondrous collection of images that I discovered on the Telegraph Newspaper website. They are made even more interesting for me by the fact that they are all derived from dried alcoholic beverages of various types.
They were taken by the chemistry department of Florida State University.
The images are produced by the firm Bevshots and are available for purchase by the 'discerning buyer'.

A drop of each drink is allowed to dry on a glass slide and then a picture taken under a microscope. The impurities in the drinks hold the crystals together and create the variety of kaleidoscopic effects.
Bevshots founder Lester Hutt has his favourites. He likes the German Pilsener one because it is a 'cool animals-style print and the colours really pop.'
'Another one of my favorite images is the cola photo. The blues, purples and golds are so rich in colour, and the composition of the image flows incredibly well'

The slides are lit with natural light from above and below.

Bevshots has sold about 20,000 of these type of artworks in the last two years.

1. Cosmopolitan.

2. Irish pale larger.

3. Orange juice.

4. Belgian Lambic beer.

5. Coca Cola.

6. German Pilsener.

7. Vodka and Tonic.

8. Red Wine.

9. Stout.

10. Dirty Martini.

11. White wine.
12. Gin and Tonic.

It's enough to drive you to drink.

For those interested in reproducing some of these kaleidoscopic effects in their brains, click on each word to be taken to the recipe or some information.


  1. These are wonderful...I must remember to save some drink.

  2. Wow, those are great! Who knew this could even be done, let alone that each drink would produce its own colours and patterns?

    This looks like something my son would enjoy having!

  3. I think my favorite is the Dirty Martini, although the Vodka and Tonic portrays exactly how the Russians felt during the years of Communism.

  4. Wonderful!
    Concidentally, a few weeks back we were shocked and surprised to see fractals misteriously appear when we put a drop of food colouring into aa glass of milk, and dashed for the camera. Nothing to compare with these beautiful images, but still we liked them - especially as we were not expecting. When I finally move my blog into 2012, I'll post a couple of photos ... :)

  5. Adrian, What is your tipple of choice, out of interest?

    Jay, yes, my kids too, all three of them!

    Robert, my daughter thinks the Dirty Martini looks like butterfly wings. You may well be right. Then again, we are coming from a democratic mind-set, are we not? My Russian Grandmother would have something to say, that's for sure!

    Brian; The fractals caused by turbulence are great! I think I did a post about a certain type of them.. ah yes, here it is. (I typed in 'turbulence in my super-duper Postvorta search engine). Looking forward to your images!

  6. These are all actually rather beautiful my tipple of choice is gin and tonic but in terms of art I think my favourite is the stout!

  7. Welcome to TLVD Emma! Yes, I found that my imbibing preferences didn't always match my aesthetic ones too. The stout is, however my favourite both ways. So rich, dark and with lovely contrasts. I can almost taste the black chill underneath the warm, soft froth!

  8. Another absolutely fascinating post, Katherine.

    I think my favourite is the Belgian Lambic Beer because of the beautiful clean contrasts and the Pale Irish Lager because of the particular colour gradations and the contrasting superimpositions.

  9. You get an A+ for your critique Geeb, and are exempt the practical.


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