A collage of some of Felice Frankel's photographs.

A collage of some of Felice Frankel’s photographs.

Photographer has front-row seat for big scientific discoveries
By Nidhi Subbaraman

Ansel Adams earned renown for his landscape photography. Annie Leibovitz became famous with her portraits of the rich and famous. Felice Frankel has staked out her own small corner of the photography world: science.

For two decades, Frankel has claimed a front-row seat to some of the biggest discoveries emerging from both sides of the Charles, photographing experiments from within the labs that created them.

When top chemists and engineers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard are preparing to reveal new research in the world’s premier journals, they call Frankel. Her subjects have included yeast colonies shaped like daisies, rainbow-colored quantum dots, and soft flexible electronics that can be tattooed onto the skin.

“That one shot can be so compelling that it gets people to not only recognize what’s going on, but excited about it,” said Paula Hammond, an MIT professor who has collaborated with Frankel on several projects. Read the complete article >

Now you can learn some techniques and tips directly from the master. Sign up now for her MITx on edX course Making Science and Engineering Pictures: A Practical Guide to Presenting Your Work. The course begins on June 15.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SePm4yteUgE]


You can also preview the first week of this course, about using a flatbed scanner to create wonderfully detailed photographs of 3D objects, in the OCW resource Making Science and Engineering Pictures.