Up Close and Colorful
Kayla Willis is a portrait and nature photographer who discovered a new love for macro photography during her time here at NAU. Her style is all about bright and vibrant colors. While her original passion was for portraits, she was introduced to liquid art macro photography and was inspired to create “Up Close and Colorful.” A zoomed in experience of liquid color.
This project focuses on the chemical reaction between milk, oil, and acrylic paint. The fat content within the milk reacts to the oil. This then causes the paint and milk to mix resulting in a coagulation of small spheres. For this project, Kayla experimented with different milk bases. The more bubbles that form, indicates that a milk with a higher fat content was used. The smoother the paint and the less amount of bubbles, means a lower fat content was used. She also experimented with a variety of oils. Using different oils, such as vegetable oil or baby oil, did not result in any dramatic chemical changes. However, when replacing the oil with vinegar, the chemical reaction changes completely. The paint breaks apart and spreads around the milk very differently. No paint bubbles form at all, instead tiny air bubbles pop up on the surface. The last experiment done was switching out the acrylic paint with nail polish. The nail polish becomes stringy when dropped into oil and then holds its form when dumped into the milk. No bubble reaction occurs, but the shapes that the polish makes changes every time.
While the science behind this project is very fascinating, this abstract art photography is meant to open the mind. Each image tells its own story depending on the emotions it makes you feel. One image could be a universe of tiny planets, and another could be a vast ocean. There is no wrong answer in abstract art. Kayla would like to thank her instructor Amy Horn for introducing her to this form of photography and teaching her a brand new way of sharing her love of color with the world.