Microscopic cross-section photo of layers of paint is more spectacular than we ever would have imaginedS

This photograph may resemble the geological strata of an alien world, but it's actually dozens of layers of paint. Natasha K. Loeblich of the Architectural Research Department of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation photographed a cross-section of the wall paints on an 18th-century theater at 100 times magnification, creating this rather stunning image.

It was awarded an Image of Distinction in the Nikon Small World photography contest.

[Nikon Small World via RadioLab]