Through his camera lens, Canadian photographer Don Komarechka explores a world which cannot been seen by the naked eye. Specifically interested in nature and macro photography, images by the young artist reveal a closer look at how the universe works. His recently unveiled piece, The Snowflake, features detailed shots of over 400 snowflakes, measured and scaled to the relative size of one another. The time-intensive project took over 2,500 hours (spread out over 5 years) to complete, resulting into a single, stunning composite poster.
An average of 40 replicate shots of each individual snowflake were combined in order to get each singular image. This process, known as focus-stacking, was required in order to achieve the super crisp, and highly focused image of each icy particle displayed within the poster. Due to the transient nature of the subject, not only is capturing a photograph of each snowflake a race against time, but 4-5 hours of post-processing are also necessary because of the handheld photography, the angles, and the lighting. Further adding to the lengthy process, the artist also needed to use “an algebraic equation to calculate the number of pixels per millimeter and measure the crystals” in order to pose them correctly against one another.
Komarechka has published a book, titled Sky Crystals: Unraveling the Mysteries of Snowflakes, that combines years of icy photography with knowledge gained from studying snowflakes, delving into the details of the science behind these beautiful natural wonders as well as photographic techniques he uses to capture them.