The sands we walk on…

I go through sand to find sand garnets and other amazing minerals and specimens from the Oregon coast (I live in Illinois). Here are a few gorgeous all natural sand garnets at just about 0.25mm wide that I balance on another sand grain - all from Bandon, Oregon

I’ve photographed sand from many other places, but the sands in Oregon are unprecedented I’ve found! I’ve done about 3,000 different sand grain images of different sand grains - garnets being my favorite


Gosh that is beautiful art. I’d love to find something like that - I tell my students maybe we are looking at diamonds and rubies but it is probably all quartz. This are my best finds in my local beach sand, first I call the jewel box, and the second a sponge spicule.


Your pictures are absolutely gorgeous!! Thank you for sharing! Have you ever photographed the purple garnet sands from Pfeiffer State Beach on the Big Sur Coast of California?


I did when I first started - I’ll try to find those pics

My mind has expanded two-fold! I knew that sand grains look interesting, but had no idea that something like those might be lurking amongst the grains.

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Can you do a quick post about the camera/lenses/lighting equipment that you used to capture these beautiful photos?


Very nice images. It’s amazing what is in the macro world we never know about. Do we know what kind of garnets they are? They sort of have the orange color of spessartite or hessonite. But obviously tough to do any testing on things that small. I’ve got a small vial of tiny purple colored garnets from the San Gabriel Mountains in So California. Inspires me to get out the super macro camera for a closer look.

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Beautiful garnets!


So cool! There’s something so elegant about those rhombic dodecahedrons…and the sponge spicule is lovely, too. I’ll have to grab some wee samples the next time I’m on a beach.

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I have found both spessartine and grossular…

Here’s another favorite sitting on a knot I tied in a hair from my daughter.

You must all understand just how tiny these are. If you’re on a cell phone right now viewing this sentence, they are easily smaller than this period: .


That is just incredible. I also would like to know what camera, lens, etc you use to capture these. It is amazing! Thank you for sharing.

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That is amazing.

Have you ever been to a green sand beach – as in peridot?

Are you familiar with mineral micromounting? I never worked with anything quite as small as this, but I’ve done a few specimens that were a couple millimeters in size. I’ve seen some absolutely spectacular work done by other mineral collectors as well.

Also, have you ever considered branching out into slime mold and fungi photography? With your setup you could do amazing things. If you want some inspiration, this the work of a friend of mine:

:star_struck: :heart_eyes: :camera:

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You might consider adding some of your Audi (spider faces) pictures to the Arthropod Faces project. The goal of that project is to provide some positive public relations for arthropods.

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That’s me!

Very very cool. I can’t even imagine how you are able to manipulate these tiny objects into position. What camera/lens do you use? I’ve been looking at picking up one of the Venus Optics Laowa 24mm probe or 100mm 2:1 macro to do some super macro photography with.

Edit: Just saw the post to your Olympus gear. Got it. 9x magnification, that’s insane.

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@ ethan1of1images, I have the same camera and macro lens (but not yet the other additions for greater power). Can you give advice on lighting when the subject is so close to the lens?

I use the Godox led126 on the hotshoe with a flex difffuser in front of it

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