Micscape Contributor In Focus:
A compilation of the articles by Ted Clarke, US
compiled by David Walker, UK
Updated June 6th 2016.
Ted Clarke has been a regular contributor to Micscape since 2001 and links to these articles together with a selection of imagery are compiled below. The breadth of subjects covered reflect his many interests. As a retired materials engineer he has written on epi-illumination methods accessible to the hobbyist. He enjoys using affordable but capable stands such as the LOMO Biolam, Monolux and modifying them with his engineering and optical skills to add versatility such as multi-mode condensers.
He particularly enjoys studying live freshwater microscopic life and the use of darkfield and circular oblique illumination to reveal their features. Diatoms both live and as frustule test slides are a major interest and exploiting techniques to reveal and photograph their fine structure.
When digital SLRs became affordable he purchased an Olympus E-330 and explored its potential on his compound and stereomicroscopes and made his own adapters. More recently when this camera failed he has been using an Amscope 5 Mpx dedicated microscope eyepiece camera.
As well as encouraging his grandchildren to explore and enjoy the microscopic world and how to use microscopes to best effect, he has been involved in outreach programmes at local nature centres. He has been generous in sharing his interests and skills in other publications such as Modern Microscopy published by the McCrone Research Institute, in particular in their Home Shop Microscopy series. He has also presented at Inter/Micro conferences also organised by McCrone.
Update June 6th 2016. Sadly Ted Clarke passed away on November 4th 2015 aged 72 after a long illness and in the presence of his family. Our sympathies and regards to his family and thank you to his daughter Susie for letting us know. Ted's contributions to Micscape will be a legacy to reflect just part of his many skills, interests and his keenness to share them with others. R.I.P. Ted.
Compiled by the Micscape Editor, David Walker. If there are any queries regarding the late Ted Clarke's contributions, please email the editor.
Links to articles:
Water Immersion Caps for Pond Water July 2001
Repair of the Lomo 1.40 NA Condenser August 2006
A Gun-Mount for Nature Photomacrography September 2006
Experiments Using Water Immersion Objectives January 2010
Introducing Children to the Micro-Life of Fish Lake January 2012
Topical Tips 5. Amateur Microscopy. March 2001
Selection of images from articles and recent emails
Above: "Some macroscopic and microscopic freshwater life of Fish Lake, Lagrange County, Indiana, USA. The montage includes a hydra, ostracod and algae (e.g. filamentous, desmids, diatoms). How many can you identify?" April 2001
Above: Ted Clarke's modified LOMO Biolam stand. November 2010 article.
Left: Ted showing a friend's granddaughter some aquatic life through his modified LOMO Biolam microscope.
Right: Photograph of Ted's granddaughter "using a stereomicroscope to examine an insect".
January 2012 article.
Below: A selection of recent images of live microorganisms (the first an algal form, the remainder diatoms) shared with the Micscape Editor at the time of writing. He has been exploring darkfield capabilities of his stands to study live diatoms from a local habitat on the Cache le Poudre river, Colorado. The interference colours with and without polariser and retarders were being studied in particular. His Monolux microscope with an Edmund 60X NA0.85 objective was used with an Amscope 5 Mpx eyepiece camera.
Published in the October 2015 edition of Micscape.
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