For my design paper this semester we are exploring design using generative tools such as grasshopper and potentially scripting too (see current progress here). The first thing we did in order to stimulate our generative minds was to head down to the university’s scanning electron microscope lab. There we begun to have a look at different items under the microscope at incredibly small scales. It was truly amazing seeing the make-up of certain items as we zoomed further and further in, and it was an incredible look into what nature can do. At every single zoom step we discovered a new layer of texture, and then texture upon texture, and beyond that texture upon texture upon texture. Some things we looked at had quite a scattered make-up, but the one in particular that interested my peers and myself was this one pictured below.
This is what a paua shell looked like when we zoomed right in on it. Thousands, potentially hundreds of thousands of tiny layers stacked upon each other in this incredibly regular fashion. Where does that organisation and order come from? And how does this structure at the microscopic level result in what we see at the macro level. This image will be the basis for moving forward with my design project this semester.