Speak of bacteria and most people will feel repulsed but an artist in Scotland believes they could be alternatives to conventional dyeing and is creating jewellery using them.
Chloe Fitzpatrick has designed a jewellery range by culturing unique colours from the bacteria found on plants and even her own body. Her project has earned her over 20 million views on TikTok
Bacteria can change colour according to the pH levels of the mediums they grow in, and by making changes to those environments, it is possible to obtain different colors, a report in Fast Company magazine said.
Fitzpatrick partnered with the University of Dundee and the James Hutton research institute to create "bacteria jewellery".
The process? Swabs from her body were transferred to LBS nutrient agar -- a nutrient-rich medium used to cultivate bacteria, the university said. This led to the emergence of bacteria colonies. From those, Fitzpatrick picked out the coloured colonies she preferred and put them on a new agar plate so the colours could multiply.
"Once the coloured colonies grew, UV resin was poured onto the plates, mixed and set into a rubber mould then sealed with gloss," the institute added.
Bacteria from different parts of her body yielded different colours. The pink-coloured accessory below was created using the colour grown from her foot.
The artist is not actually wearing these pieces. The images are photoshopped.
Another collection of hers replicated the textures hidden in fish. She designed "fish rings" to showcase the "true beauty" of a creature not usually considered the most beautiful.
Fitzpatrick said her goal is to reconnect with a part of nature that people don't commonly think of.
“I believe that the micro and bacterial world has a lot of potential in sustainable material development, with a rich range of colours, shapes and forms that could inspire the next generation of artists and designers," she told Dundee University.