Point your phone's camera to teensy things, and take their pics with your makeshift microscope
The iPhone 4S already has a great camera that can capture clear and crisp images. But if you're a photographer who's always looking to better your craft, you may still be considering using lens attachments to enhance your photos. While many of these phone accessories are quite expensive, there's one particular DIY lens that comes completely free — a drop of water.
Photographer Alexander Wild propped his iPhone on a couple of drinking glasses, and carefully placed a drop of water on its lens. Using this technique, Wild was able to take magnified pictures of tiny things like ants and honey bee hairs, as well as close-up images of a small flower. The larger a droplet is, the higher its magnification. It will evaporate after some time, though, so you'll need to create the perfect round droplet on the lens several times if you have a lot of pictures to take. We tried this strange method out ourselves and shot the photo of the match heads you see above.
The resulting photos that you can see on Scientific American have dreamy edges with sharp centers. Wild admits, though, that the images' quality and sharpness can't compare to photos taken using commercial lens attachments like Olloclip. But as it's a great free hack anyone can do, we're not complaining. While the photographer only tested the technique on his iPhone, it will work for any device with a camera, although results will vary depending on how good the camera is.
As is always the case with water and electronics: use this method at your own risk. Any time water has the chance to make it inside your smartphone, bad things can happen, so be sure that your water droplets remain confined to the glass part of the lens and don't venture beyond.
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