Photographing birefringence in plastic containers
Once I had a plastic container positioned on my desk and noticed a reflection in my phone that looked more colorful than I expected. It wasn't long before I looked at everything in my office through polarized sunglasses and started hoarding plastic trash. The key is to position the plastic between the polarized lens and an LCD screen. Parts of the plastic with different internal stresses bend the angle of polarization different amounts, and differently for different colors. Depending on the angle of the polarizing filter compared to the angle of the screen the background can be anywhere from fully lit – to almost completely black.
The photos on this page were a kind of trial run for fancier photos that are now posted for sale and rental on Turning art.
These are page magnifiers that I bought for the DIY Schlieren Flow Visualization.
This is what the plastic looks like without a polarizer, just super-regular boring plastic.
Let me know if you have any questions! Contact.