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A Photographer Captures Plants’ Invisible UV Glow

Since 2014, photographer Craig Burrows has been practicing ultraviolet-induced visible fluorescence (UVIVF) photography.

by Nathaniel Ainley
Apr 12 2017, 4:27pm

Images courtesy the artist

Whenever a flower is hit by sunlight, it lets off a bioluminescence-like glow—we just can't see it. Since 2014, photographer Craig Burrows has been practicing ultraviolet-induced visible fluorescence (UVIVF) photography, which is the process of taking pictures of glowing flowers that have been put under a UV light. Burrows' process starts at night when he ventures out under the cover of darkness to pick flowers growing in his surrounding neighborhood. Once he's picked his subjects he brings them back to his house where shoots them under a 365nm UV light. Burrows says he rarely knows how an image is going to turn out; sometimes certain flowers he thinks are going to turn out really beautifully will end up falling flat and vice versa.

Burrows started shooting UV-induced fluorescence after seeing Swedish photographer Oleksandr Holovachov's work. "The photos were like nothing I'd ever seen before and stood in stark contrast to the ridiculously abundant photos of pretty flowers in the modern day," Burrows tells Creators. "Having already been doing infrared photography, I realized I was more drawn to the categories of photography fewer people were doing and UVIVF certainly checked the box. After having done it for so long now, I find it fascinating how distinctly the fluorescence manifests on different parts of a flower's anatomy." Check out more of Burrows' UV photography below: 

See more work by Craig Burrows on his website.

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