The Art of Molecular Photography

Molecular Photography - www.bevshots.com - Michael W. Davidson - Florida State Research Foundation

Left: Rose' / Far Right: Sake

As the publisher of in the Mix, I look every year for unique ways to promote our magazine and bring art onto its cover. Last year a friend directed me to the website of BevShots, and after one look, I knew this was going to evolve into a cover series. Please sit back and enjoy the wonders of a vodka tonic under the microscope on this edition’s cover.

From Geek to Chic

In 1992, a research scientist named Michael Davidson stumbled upon a genius idea right under his nose – literally. In his 25-year career through the many facets of microscopy, he had taken photographs under the microscope of a collection of items including DNA, biochemicals, and vitamins.

Looking for novel ways to fund his Florida State University lab, Davidson decided to take his microphotographs to businesses for possible commercial opportunities. While the scientist was presenting his pictures to established retail companies, one necktie manufacturer changed Davidson’s creative direction with just one word – cocktails.

With this new direction, Davidson took his microphotography a step further. Along with mixed drinks, he picked out a few favorite brews and wines too, took some shots of the beverages under his microscope, and the Molecular ExpressionsTM Cocktail Collection was born. The drink-donned neckties were top shelf from 1995 to 2002, and now his buzz-worthy images are shaking up the art world with BevShots.

Molecular Photography - www.bevshots.com - Michael W. Davidson - Florida state Research Foundatio

All photomicrographs Copyright 1995. Michael W. Davidson & Florida State Research Foundation. www.bevshots.com

BevShot images are made by first crystallizing the drink of choice on a lab slide. Using a standard light microscope with a camera attached, the light source is polarized and passed through the crystal. This creates the magnificent colors we see in our favorite drinks featured on this site.

BevShots is licensed from Florida State University and Michael Davidson, but the man who keeps the party going is Lester Hutt, president of BevShots MicroArt, LLC. BevShots is the perfect blend of Hutt’s business and science backgrounds. While completing his graduate degree in chemistry from UC Berkeley, Hutt worked on NASA’s Mars probes searching for evidence of past life on the red planet. Apple, Inc. then called on him to be a part of history as they released their revolutionary new product, the iPod.

He enjoys pursuing business ideas that re-establish manufacturing in the United States and in fact made it a point to keep BevShots, from start to finish, a product that is made in the U.S.A. Because he has a personal passion for art with a twist, Lester’s new business venture makes his every hour, happy hour. Please visit www.bevshots.com to see how you can have your own works of art.

Before closing I’d like to add that this process is not quick; it takes several weeks to create the finished product in the laboratory. However, if you would like your own unique art imagery for your restaurant’s signature drink or a brand company wants their own version of a specific beer, wine, or spirit, give me a call. We’ll discuss how this can be arranged, as each image is like a fingerprint, unique in its own makeup. Please contact me at don@imiagency.com or call 770.928.1980.