October 19, 2021

I, Science

The science magazine of Imperial College

These beautiful photographs of alcohol under the microscope are a perfect blend of art and science
Wine White crystals

White Wine by Michael Davidson

‘Tis the season of resolution and empty pockets and for many of us January will remain a particularly dry month. Thankfully, a perfect blend of science and art allows us to appreciate alcohol in a different way. Research scientist Michael Davidson from the Florida State University has used his scientific expertise to create some alcohol inspired art.

By crystallising slides of alcohol and then photographing them through a microscope under polarised light, he has created images such as the one above, depicting white wine. With this method he has captured a range of beautiful patterns, from all kinds of drinks including the Pale Ale and the Rum and Coke (or Cuba Libre) below.

American Pale Ale crystals

American Pale Ale” 

Rum and Cola crystals

Rum and Cola” 

Davidson began taking these photomicrographs in the 1990’s as a modest effort to raise funds for his lab. His prints quickly became very popular and are now available to purchase online. Whether you like a fancy cocktail, a sophisticated glass of wine or a good ol’ dram of scotch, visit BevShots to see your favourite drink in a new light.

 Eva Spielvogel is studying for an MSc in Science Media Production.

Images by Michael Davidson, courtesy of BevShots.