Microscopy started as a summer hobby in 2023, fueled by engaging books, niche YouTubers, bloggers, and Instagram pages. Captivated, I acquired a Motic BA310E, complete with an array of objectives and eyepieces. It's a journey into patience, a perfect counterbalance to the everyday hustle.
Seeing my own red blood cells under the microscope was a transformative experience. Tiny cells, hustling and bustling in their microscopic world. More than mere cells — they are the constituents of me — existing in their own realm, unaware of the bigger picture they're part of. This insight was quite striking – we're all simply an intricate network of cells (some 30 trillion human cells and about 38 trillion bacteria), each playing a smol part in a much larger, complex system.
My toolkit centers around the Motic BA310E. It's kitted out with various objectives (4x, 10x, 20x and 40x ) and eyepieces (10x), allowing me to dive into different aspects of the microscopic world. I also use polarizer, phase slider and some filters (green interference, blue and didymium). Using this equipment, I experiment with several techniques. Darkfield microscopy is great for revealing the intricate structures of transparent specimens, while brightfield is my go-to for observing the natural colors and textures. Polarized light microscopy adds a bit of fun, turning ordinary objects into vibrant displays of color. Each method offers a unique way to explore the tiny wonders that are usually hidden from the naked eye.
My setup also includes a couple of key adaptors: The iCamLab Ultra adapter lets me use my iPhone 14 Pro as a camera, capturing images and videos right from the eyepiece. It's amazing how this setup transforms a smartphone into a powerful imaging device — and allows me to use all the out-of-the-box iOS features (timelapse, 4k videos, slo-mo, zoom). For more professional-grade photography, I also use an Askania adapter 1.6x coupled with a T2 adapter for my Sony Alpha 7 IV. This combination allows for higher resolution captures, perfect for when I want to delve into the finer details and nuances of my samples.
My journey into microscopy truly began with exploring local ponds and parks around Berlin. Scooping up a sample is always thrilling, as it could reveal anything from the dance of water fleas to the delicate swirls of algae. It always reminds me of treasure hunting, where each water sample is a map leading to microscopic marvels.
Away from these natural reservoirs, I've found that even my fridge offers a world of microscopic wonders. The mold growing on a forgotten piece of fruit or the complex structure of a vegetable's fiber become very intriguing under the microscope. These everyday items showcase nature's intricate design, providing a fresh perspective on the commonplace. Whether it's a water sample from a tranquil pond or a slice of everyday life from my fridge, each brings its unique story.
In the world of microscopy, the ordinary becomes extraordinary, revealing the intricate beauty that lies hidden in our surroundings.