Create Your Own Planets for Indoor Astrophotography

Feb 11, 2015

Liron Samuels

Liron Samuels is a wildlife and commercial photographer based in Israel. When he isn’t waking up at 4am to take photos of nature, he stays awake until 4am taking photos of the night skies or time lapses. You can see more of his work on his website or follow him on Facebook.

Create Your Own Planets for Indoor Astrophotography

Feb 11, 2015

Liron Samuels

Liron Samuels is a wildlife and commercial photographer based in Israel. When he isn’t waking up at 4am to take photos of nature, he stays awake until 4am taking photos of the night skies or time lapses. You can see more of his work on his website or follow him on Facebook.

Join the Discussion

Share on:

YouTube video

Have you ever wanted to photograph the planets or create a video in space, just to realize that unless you score a job at NASA (or get a D810A) your dream won’t become a reality?

If you have, then Petri Dish Planets is exactly what you’re looking for.

Watch this tutorial to learn how you can make your own planets, using household items like milk, dish soap and food coloring.

Joey Shanks of Shanks FX reveals his techniques for creating these wonderful little planet-like solutions.

The basic supplies you will need are a container (flat, wide and shallow), milk, dish soap and food coloring.

For more advanced control, you’ll want the following items as well:

  • Variety of milk (skim, 2%, whole and butter milk are shown in the video)
  • Q-tips, liquid plungers and droppers
  • Water based paints
  • Hydrogen Peroxide
  • Rubbing Alcohol
  • Paint thinner
  • All purpose cleaner

The magic behind this trick is explained in the video. The dish soap dissolves the fat molecules that are found in the milk, and the food coloring makes the reaction visible (and quite mesmerizing).

http___makeagif.com__media_2-09-2015_kRn7E_

Various milks are used as the density of the milk affects how quickly the reaction will take place and how long it will last.

The Q-tips are used to apply the dish soap and the liquid plungers and droppers will allow you to gain a bit more control over your creation.

Joey mentions that other liquids with bipolar properties are used for a similar, yet different, effect as the dish soap. These liquids include hydrogen peroxide, rubbing alcohol, paint thinner and all purpose cleaner.

http___makeagif.com__media_2-06-2015_0ue4tC

Next time the weather is too bad for real astrophotography, or you just feel like doing something fun at home, try creating your own petri dish planets.

Check out the Shanks FX YouTube channel for more cool videos.

2

Capture

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

Watch the video for more planets!

Filed Under:

Tagged With:

Find this interesting? Share it with your friends!

Liron Samuels

Liron Samuels

Liron Samuels is a wildlife and commercial photographer based in Israel. When he isn’t waking up at 4am to take photos of nature, he stays awake until 4am taking photos of the night skies or time lapses. You can see more of his work on his website or follow him on Facebook.

Join the Discussion

DIYP Comment Policy
Be nice, be on-topic, no personal information or flames.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

One response to “Create Your Own Planets for Indoor Astrophotography”

  1. Z Avatar
    Z

    Great! Much cheaper than real astrophotography.