There are some science class staples that will never cease to be amazing, no matter how often you see them—among them, liquid nitrogen. To wit: these beautiful images of flower blooms, flash-frozen using liquid-state nitrogen and shattered in front of a camera lens for our amusement.

The aptly-titled series, Rapid Bloom, is the latest project of German artist Martin Klimas. Klimas specializes in high-speed fine art photography, which, yes, sounds like an oxymoron. In action, though, it's quite beautiful—The New York Times describes the effect as "Jackson Pollock in 3D." In the past, Klimas has destroyed everything from expensive porcelain figurines to vases full of water.


But for Rapid Bloom, he turned to the natural world—using a vat of liquid nitrogen, he and his studio assistants froze roses, peonies, and dozens of other blooms. Then, using an air gun just out of frame, they shattered each bud against a white backdrop, capturing the explosions on film. Though other photographers, like Ori Gersht, have experimented with the same technique, Klimas' photos are no less fun to look at. And if you're interested in making your own, look no further than this handy DIY. [FeatureShoot]