There may be more stars in the sky than sand grains on the world's beaches, but do they look as pretty as these grains when shot ultra close-up? Maybe not. But it's mind-boggling to see magnified sand looking so gorgeous.
Magnified at 250x by Professor Gary Greenberg at the University College of London, the individual grains of sand look like gemstones or beautiful miniature seashells, and also help illustrate which larger rock they crumbled from.
As grains of sand are small enough to begin with, Professor Greenberg had to develop a new form of magnification photography to avoid the shallow depth of field he was encountering before:
"I take dozens of pictures at different points of focus then combine them using software to produce my images. Although the pictures look simple each grain of sand can take hours to photograph in a way that I am happy with."
Should you be reading this post and wishing you could buy a coffee table book featuring photos of these magnificent rocks, good news - Professor Greenberg is selling signed copies of his book for $US20 from his website. Along with the intriguingly titled Florotica - Revealing the Sensuality of the Micro World. [SandGrains via Daily Mail via Lost at E Minor - Thanks Kate!]
Image Credits: Professor Greenberg/SWNS