Macro Photographer Reveals ‘Unseen World’ of Household Objects

A ripe, red strawberry on the left with a close-up view of a small, pale insect on its surface to the right. A white arrow points from the strawberry to the insect, highlighting the detail of the tiny creature. A measuring scale is visible beneath the strawberry.

An extreme macro photographer has revealed “the things that can’t be seen with the naked eye” in everyday household items like a rusty razor, a $100 bill, a strawberry, and a leaf.

Vasyl Kykliak, who is based in New York City, has become an online hit with his macro and extreme macro photography page “Microworld Explorer” on TikTok and Instagram.

@microworldexplorer Wash your strawberries very well! 🍓 #strawberry #macro #photography #zoom #macrozoom #macroworld #microscope #fyp #foryoupage #viral #рекомендации ♬ The Chicken Wing Beat – Ricky Desktop

His incredible super zoom videos reveal the “unseen world” of the ordinary items and food that most people have lying around their homes such as a raspberry, a salted sunflower seed, and an old hair comb.

‘The Beauty of a Close-Up’

Kykliak, an IT specialist who moved from Ukraine to New York City 10 years ago, believes that macro photography allows a viewer to truly understand the complexity of what resides on Earth.

@microworldexplorer Go throw away your old razor! 🤮 #macro #photography #zoom #macrozoom #macroworld #macrovideo #microscope #foryoupage #fyp #viral #razor #rust ♬ Dumb Ways to Die – Tangerine Kitty

“I’m obsessed with doing macro and extreme macro photography of insects, flowers, and other things to see them in detail,” Kykliak tells PetaPixel.

“Firstly, I love to explore and learn something new every day, especially about the microworld, because I’m curious.

“I feel it is only with a close-up that you can see and appreciate all the beauty and complexity of our incredible world. Every creature is completely special and amazing at different levels of magnification.

“Also, we all spend a lot of time working and trying to make this world better. We don’t even have time to stop and just look closer at our beautiful and amazing world.

“So, I love what I do, because I have the opportunity to share my content with people all over the world and show them incredible wonders of our nature, they’ve never seen before! And to make them a little happier, I hope.”

@microworldexplorer Do you like salted sunflower seeds? 🌻 #photography #zoom #macrozoom #macroworld #macrovideo #microscope #foryoupage #fyp #viral ♬ Stranger Things – Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein

‘A Long and Complicated Process’

Kykliak says his passion for macro photography began when he was a child and he learned to photograph through a microscope as a student. Now, Kykliak uses the focus stacking technique to capture his images as this enables him to see the entire object in focus in the photograph.

The extreme macro photographer says that it takes around two to three days to make each super zoom video, which he describes as “a long and complicated process.”

@microworldexplorer Your thoughts? 🤔 #macro #photography #zoom #macrozoom #macroworld #macrovideo #microscope #foryoupage #fyp #viral #leaf #flowers ♬ Alice in Wonderland – Joanna Wang

Firstly, he prepares the object by cleaning and removing all dust and other necessary micro parts from it. Kykliak then positions the object and sets up the correct lighting.

Following this, he takes around 300 to 800 photos of an item, depending on the object’s complexity, at 12 different levels of magnification. He then uses special software for stacking and post-editing the images before he can start making the zoom.

A collage of 12 images showcasing a close-up examination of a small leaf and its textured surface. The images progress from a view of the whole leaf to highly magnified shots, revealing fine details and intricate patterns on the leaf's surface.
The 12 final images that Vasyl Kykliak used to create his super-zoom video of a leaf.

However, as Kykliak points out this painstaking process “means that at the end of zoom video (the 12th level picture), you see an object 2,048 times larger than at the beginning of the video.”

When it comes to selecting objects for his videos, Kykliak says he often seeks his daughter Sofia’s advice.

“Sometimes my daughter Sofia tells me what would be interesting to see,” the photographer explains.

“Once she told me to look at the strawberry, she said that very small bugs live there. I actually found a bug and did a zoom video on it.

“That is my most viewed video so far, with more than 67 million views on TikTok. So she is now my partner in this business!”

Microworld Explorer can be found on TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube and website.

Image credits: All photos by Vasyl Kykliak/ Microworld Explorer.