In the pitch black, with his penlight in hand, Caleb Charland traces the shape of a cube along a ruler. Charland made 13 exposures on one sheet of 4×5 film for the cube image you see here. Twelve exposures for each side of the cube, and one exposure with the light on to fill in the shapes of the room and the table. “I guess you could do it in Photoshop a lot quicker and easier but I enjoy the analog process” says Charland, “there is something to working within limits.”
All too often physics articles are illustrated by ubiquitous digital renderings that ultimately explain little to the chart-phobic like myself. Using images of objects in the visible, physical world was a way to break away from the usual science-imaging formula. These three images were commissioned to illustrate an article in the Discover special issue Extreme Physics, on newsstands through March 22nd, 2010.