Feast your eyes and ears on Compressed 03, the latest in a series of audio/visual experiences expertly crafted by analog effects artist Kim Pimmel. You'll want to rock this clip with headphones if you've got them — and make sure it's full-screen, HD, the works.
What's really impressive about this video — apart from its phantasmagoric shapes, colors, and sounds — is that it was created entirely from scratch using bizarre but simple materials: foodstuffs, magnetized liquid called ferrofluid, and a macro lens. Even the soundtrack is original. Pimmel described his creative process in an email to io9:
I find analog things appealing - whether it's vinyl or photographic film, there's a certain richness and magic that's difficult to replicate with digital means. The Compressed series showcases analog visual effect techniques, so everything in the films is made by hand, with physical materials and tools in my studio. For each of the Compressed films I try to develop and master a set of analog techniques with which I can craft a narrative.
For the effects in Compressed 03, I was drawn to the dynamic interactions between liquids. I spent about a month playing mad scientist to see what gave the most interesting results. I raided the kitchen for common stuff like milk, oil, and molasses. I stopped at the drug store and buy random things such as witch hazel, nail polish, and bubble blowing mix. I ordered exotic stuff like ferrofluid online. Some liquids repelled each other, some caused coagulation, and some created intricate patterns.
I settled on ferrofluid as my primary liquid, since it yielded some nice interactions with other liquids and could be manipulated using magnetism. All of the black or brown seen in the film is ferrofluid - needless to say it was a very messy few months!
We'd say it was worth the effort.