Saturday 23, June 2018

Beyond the Naked Eye

Beyond the Naked Eye
Microscopy Beginners Course
6.30pm – 9.00pm, Tuesdays, 30th Jan – 27th Feb 2018

Experience new ways of creating striking images by venturing into the unseen world of microscopy, exploring different samples and staining techniques through the medium of light. ASCUS Lab is equipped with a wide range of microscopes that have a variety of microscopy techniques, from basic brightfield using simple white light to darkfield and polarised light techniques that alter the light path. This workshop will cover every stage, from sample collection and preparation, taking you through the basic physics of how microscopes work along with an introduction to the different techniques of light microscopy. Explore and gain understanding of how different samples interact with light and different stains and gain the confidence in using a range of microscopes for your own creative exploration into microscopic image making.

You will try out making various samples from the world around you – from single celled to multi celled organisms like you, to plants, dust and everything in between. The course will explore the benefits of using different samples for making permanent slides, along with the benefits of using different contrast enhancing techniques for both scientific and creative purposes. All participants should bring along a notebook to take notes as a range of different processes and protocols will be covered over on the course, all other materials are provided.

Course Outline

This is a series of skills workshops combining presentation, demos and hands-on learning activities for anyone interested in learning the basics of microscopy in a fun, creative and experimental environment.

What will be covered:

WEEK 1
HOW MICROSCOPES WORK ‘WHAT AM I SEEING?’
WEEK 2
SAMPLE COLLECTION & MOUNTING ‘WHAT DO I NEED TO CONSIDER?’
WEEK 3
SAMPLE STAINING & MOUNTING ‘HOW DO I MAKE MY SLIDE LAST?’
WEEK 4
DIFFERENT MICROSCOPY TECHNIQUES ‘WHY DO THEY MATTER?’
WEEK 5
INTRO TO ADVANCED TECHNIQUES ‘HOW CLOSE UP CAN I GET?’
  • Introduction to microscopes – refraction, reflection, magnification and scale
  • The physics of microscopy – the light path
  • How microscopes are built – lenses and mirrors
  • Sample collection and preservation – what to consider
  • Slide preparation – fixing and mounting
  • Staining methods, techniques and applications – an expansive world
  • How staining works – top tips for using different stains
  • Scientific use – taxonomy and diagnostics
  • Creative use – concepts and approaches
  • Kohler illumination technique – Brightfield optimised
  • Contrast enhancing techniques – adjusting the light path
  • Intro to Oil immersion technique – as close up as you can get
  • Microscopy image capturing – using DSLR camera to take micrographs

People who might like to take this course include:

  • anyone interested in microscopy and developing lab skills
  • artists interested in using microscopes for creative projects
  • scientists who don’t usually work with microscopes
  • students interested in exploring the field of microscopy
  • the ever curious and creative
  • anyone interested in looking deeper into what lives all around us in the microscopic world!

Here’s how it went…

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