There isn't a great deal of macro cinematography and after drinking in this video, you might wonder "Why not?" German photographer and filmmaker Roman De Giuli creates beautiful and complex scenes using simple ingredients on areas sometimes smaller than the surface of a coin.
The visual FX achieved are reminiscent of somewhere between the most advanced photography of the universe and CGI. The results are so varied and engaging that I had to enquire as to what it is we are actually looking at. Here's how Roman explains it:
It is made up of several oils and dyes, water, alcohol and some top secret stuff! The dyes make the difference because these ones are for colouring textile. I use a lot of different glass plates to stack one on top of another as well as clock glass, like is common in liquid light shows. Of course, the most part of the shots are front or top shots of a crystal ball.
The video has a fantastic sense of scale which is a challenge in and of itself with macro photography. Every element fit so perfectly with the template of universe inspired VFX that the cynic in me had to ask Roman whether the results were a happy accident or instead carefully calculated similarities.
I wanted to bring planets to life and started to experiment with round surfaces. As gravity pulls the fluids downwards, you get extra momentum in the movements. My first shots were a mess, but after a while I found out how to control the setting. I used a crystal ball and a stand underneath; it worked very well. I failed at creating a universe background with stars though. That simply did not workout this time and I didn't want to add any CGI.
Well, Roman is reticent to add any CGI for good reason; his work would give a similar fully digital piece a run for its money.
You can see more of Roman's work -- including 4K resolution wallpapers -- by visiting his blog Terracollage.