Water droplet lens: Dutch scientists and photographer capture portraits using water as the lens


posted Monday, June 19, 2017 at 2:59 PM EDT


Dutch water company SPA Nederland believes in the purity of their product. To prove how clean and clear their water is, they employed scientists to use a drop of SPA Nederland water as a camera lens.

It sounds crazy, right? Ultimately, anything can act as a functional lens so long as it can refract light to converge at a single point. The scientists in the video below placed an aperture diaphragm with a piece of glass – coated with water-repellant – in front of a camera sensor. They then placed a water droplet on the glass and used precise electrical charges to subtly change the shape of the droplet and focus the “lens.”

As you can see below, the final images captured by photographer Robin de Puy are quite impressive. They have a very dreamy look to them. While you can’t head to your local camera store to place an order for your own water droplet lens, it is nonetheless an interesting use of water.

Note: The video below is in Dutch. Click the gear icon to select English as the closed caption language. Unfortunately, the English captions overlap with captions on the video itself, but they’re still mostly legible.

(Seen via Fstoppers)