Orna resembles a figure of a fiery Spanish dancer. The "Latin" name comes from the word ornatus which means costume. The composition has been made from soft, translucent organic gels and measures about 1.5 inch in diameter. The image was created by utilizing spectacular visual effects displayed by certain organic gels subjected to deformations and captured in cross-polarized light. The novel technique is a combination of photography, biochemistry and material science.
Author: Elzbieta (Ela) Kurowska is a photographer and a biochemist with a PhD degree. Her career in art photography started in 2013, shortly after she stumbled upon photographic images made using photoelasticity, an old visualization technique from the field of materials engineering. Ela was so inspired by spectacular bursts of light and vivid colors revealed by solid, translucent resins subjected to deformations and photographed in cross-polarized light field that she decided to search for an alternative material that would produce similar visual effects but would be soft, malleable and suitable for art photography.
The material that she has found – soft, translucent organic gels – has exceeded her expectations. Not only was she able to adapt her biochemistry lab techniques to physically mold and manipulate organic gels to glow in polarized light upon the stress of deformation. She has also utilized gels’ natural predisposition to produce graceful, life-resembling shapes to magically transform pale, translucent structures into otherworldly images of emerging life made out of light and vivid colors, Light Forms.