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Paint-Covered Balloons Burst Like Liquid Jewels

Fabian Oefner uses a high-speed shutter to capture gravity-defying images.

by Sara Intrator
Aug 15 2013, 1:30pm

Fabian Oefner is known for his colorful photographs of overlooked phenomena using various paints. Last time we covered his work, Oefner had used magnetic ferroliquids and watercolors to create vibrant images that look like the surface of the moon. 

The Swiss photographer’s newest project, Liquid Jewels, uses high-speed photography to capture acrylic paint-covered balloons mid pop. Using the air pressure of the exploding balloon and a rapid shutter speed, Oefner is able to capture the the acrylic paint as it momentarily disperses into the air, to once again produce fantastically hued images. 

Liquid Jewels is part of an “ongoing exploration of manipulating paint with natural forces such as sound, centrifugal force, and even magnetism.” Using an extremely fast shutter speed, he defies the rules of gravity and catches the organic, air-bound paint within seconds.  

On his website, Oefner discusses why he loves the project, saying: 

“What I particularly love about the images is that if you look closely, you can see, how the individual shades start to mix with each other, blue and magenta becomes violet, red and yellow becomes orange…within a few microseconds, the paint forms into the most beautiful color combinations…and then its gone again. What remains is the capture of that firework of colors, frozen in time.”

If you like this series, check out Oefner’s past work including, Black Hole, Nebulae, Shootout, and Dancing Colors.

[via Laughing Squid]

Images courtesy of Fabian Oefner.


fabian oefner
Liquid Jewels