Iori Tomita’s colorful creations are a marvel to behold – how they are created is equally astonishing:

Tomita first removes the scales and skin of fish that have been preserved in formaldehyde. Next he soaks the creatures in a stain that dyes the cartilage blue.

Tomita uses a digestive enzyme called trypsin, along with a host of other chemicals, to break down the proteins and muscles, halting the process just at the moment they become transparent, but before they lose their form.

The bones are then stained with red dye, and the brilliant beast is preserved in a jar of glycerin. The extensive production takes five months to a year, but the result is an arresting look at the inner workings of underwater life.

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Iori Tomita – Turns Animal Corpses Psychedelic

For more of Tomita’s work make sure to visit his website.

> Transparent Specimens | Wired