Fritz Goro 1901 -86 the inventor of Macro Photography

Fritz Goro was a German photographer, who spent forty years of his life working for the famous American ‘Life’ photo journal, and is considered the inventor of macro photography. He trained at the Bauhaus School of Sculpture and Design, and initially was a photo journalist for the Munich weekly newspaper. In 1933 he went to America when Hitler came to power .

While working for ‘Life’ he aimed to “make visible the world that lies between the microscope and the naked eye.” Goro was intrigued by scientific subjects and Gerald Piel (former Life science editor) makes the below reference to Goro’s work.

” It was (Goro’s) artistry and ingenuity that made photographs of abstractions, of the big ideas from the genetic code to plate tectonics.”.

Goro photographed many scientific breakthroughs such as the separation of plutonium and uranium isotopes, to make the atomic bomb and the invention of penicillin.

I really like some of Goro’s work as he captures interesting abstract images, from very simple scientific and organic forms. The work shown below demonstrates his attention to form and shape, (see interior and design of a shell) texture, pattern and line.

fitz goro octo

Fitz Goro laserFitz Goro shell


Fitz Goro 1

Early Attempts and Feedback from Sharon

I took three shoots of different oil and water images, before receiving advice on techniques from Sharon. The photographs shown here are some of the best ones from the shoots. I used a macro lens and tripod to take the images. Different materials were placed under a glass of water with olive oil, and washing up liquid was added. My aim was to create a collage of different colours, and focus upon some of the formal elements of photography.  (Texture, shape, form pattern and colour) I used a macro lens and experimented with different aperture settings, I.S.O. and using the flash. The materials I used included coloured  pencils and coloured  feathers. Also I had previously experimented, using flower petals, leaves and sweet papers but these were not as successful.

Coloured Pencils shoot 3

6910 Coloured Pencils shoot 3

Coloured Pencils Shoot 3

6900 Coloured Pencils Shoot 3

Pastel pencils shoot 3

6881 Pastel pencils shoot 3

Coloured Pencils shoot 3

6878 Coloured Pencils shoot 3

Coloured Feathers shoot 3

6558 Coloured Feathers shoot 3

Coloured feathers shoot 3

6855 Coloured feathers shoot 3

Coloured Pencils Shoot 1

6387 Coloured Pencils Shoot 1

Firstly I love that you have been experimenting! And thank you for showing me some of your work. In terms of lighting when you don’t use flash you need to watch your shutter speed. I noticed in your image ‘6858’ your shutter was down to 1/9 sec. If you use a slow shutter you will need to use a tripod to shop camera shake. Experiment with your oil and washing up liquid mix. Try using less and don’t mix the water up, (which should give you fewer and cleaner bubbles). In images ‘6387’ and ‘6855’ I found the composition works better for me in ‘6855’ as there is space around the bubbles. I think my favourite images though are ‘6910’ and ‘6881’, the colours pop and  I really like the composition of ‘6910’