The Microscopic Beauty of Plants and Trees

Images made through a microscope. All subject types.

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dhmiller
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Post by dhmiller »

Beautiful images. If one wanted to enter this field, is there a "basic" setup that is recommended? Can these be done with an objective mounted on the camera, or is a microscope recommended? Love to get some info on how to start up.

Robert Berdan
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Microscope required

Post by Robert Berdan »

Hi - the equipment required depends on the magnification you need. You can use a 4, 10, and 20X objective with macro equppment and a Flat LED lamp for transparent specimens. I use this for snowflakes e.g. https://www.canadiannaturephotographer. ... llery.html - for sections of plants the low power objectives and a bright field microscope produces the best images as the plant sections are thin 10-30 microns generally. The macro system is nice for 3D specimens and focus stacking. I have some Tips on Photomicrography here: https://www.canadiannaturephotographer. ... _tips.html and if you are buying a microscope some tips here: https://www.canadiannaturephotographer. ... scope.html

For cutting thin sections of plants I recommend starting with simple razor blades, then trying a hand microtome - it takes some practice but most of the sections in my article were cut with a hand microtome. I just recently purchased a sliding microtome which I have yet to try.

Another alternative is photograph the specimens with a stereo microscope with a trinocular head. I hope to post an article about this in the near future. I am using a Wild stereoscope and a new Zeiss Stemi stereo scope with camera attached and it does a nice job for some specimens.

A good bright light microscope can be purchased used for $100-$1000 and a new Chinese brand scope, which are good value for under $1000. Used scopes are nice, but often they need some work and I recommend them mostly for experienced microscope users.

Hope this helps.
RB

dhmiller
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Re: Microscope required

Post by dhmiller »

Thanks, Robert. That's a helpful article and a great gallery. I don't plan to use a scope at this point (though my wife was a path lab tech in grad school and used to cut frozen sections and view them on an EM, but that won't help much now ;-) ). I would like to attempt this using my existing objectives - 4x, 10x and 20x, for example, on a tube lens/camera rig and was curious if that is feasible.
Would something like this be useful? https://www.carolina.com/catalog/detail ... tDEALw_wcB

And then the slices are mounted on a slide, for example? I'll do some reading on the topic, but I am curious if this could be a way to add a new dimension to my subjects (getting little tired of bug eyes ;-))
Thanks again for your help.

Robert Berdan wrote:Hi - the equipment required depends on the magnification you need. You can use a 4, 10, and 20X objective with macro equppment and a Flat LED lamp for transparent specimens. I use this for snowflakes e.g. https://www.canadiannaturephotographer. ... llery.html - for sections of plants the low power objectives and a bright field microscope produces the best images as the plant sections are thin 10-30 microns generally. The macro system is nice for 3D specimens and focus stacking. I have some Tips on Photomicrography here: https://www.canadiannaturephotographer. ... _tips.html and if you are buying a microscope some tips here: https://www.canadiannaturephotographer. ... scope.html

For cutting thin sections of plants I recommend starting with simple razor blades, then trying a hand microtome - it takes some practice but most of the sections in my article were cut with a hand microtome. I just recently purchased a sliding microtome which I have yet to try.

Another alternative is photograph the specimens with a stereo microscope with a trinocular head. I hope to post an article about this in the near future. I am using a Wild stereoscope and a new Zeiss Stemi stereo scope with camera attached and it does a nice job for some specimens.

A good bright light microscope can be purchased used for $100-$1000 and a new Chinese brand scope, which are good value for under $1000. Used scopes are nice, but often they need some work and I recommend them mostly for experienced microscope users.

Hope this helps.
RB

carlos.uruguay
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Post by carlos.uruguay »

Thanks!! Nice!!!

Cyclops
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Post by Cyclops »

Fantastic images!
Canon 30D | Canon IXUS 265HS | Cosina 100mm f3.5 macro | EF 75-300 f4.5-5.6 USM III | EF 50 f1.8 II | Slik 88 tripod | Apex Practicioner monocular microscope

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