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also known as The Balancing Bluebottle

The Acrobatic Fly1908

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  • 3.5
The challenge of the very slow lens required by F. Percy Smith for macro-photography, coupled with the insensitive film stock of the day, meant that so much light was required for exposure that the poor flies quickly succumbed to the heat. As Smith had glued their wings so that they could not fly away, they used their legs to achieve the memorable results seen here.



Member Reviews (16)

928231f35ff676e4cf4933bab511a7e7? m 0030
top reviewer

Animal cruelty we can thoroughly enjoy. The finale really hit home!

top reviewer

Quite amazing photography for it's time - and what an original thought... a fly circus!

7a202330e695743b3b01332693c3840d? m 0019
top reviewer

OK. Well, it's more show than I get from a salt-shooter at a BBQ. Hope this doesn't upset the PETI group :-) -Biggo

top reviewer

Never thought I'd feel sorry for such a pest. But it is cruelty to animals.

top reviewer

A fly/metamorphosis mashup might be interesting!

Amazing in a creepy way.

sad, but fascinting to see

reminds me of the films I saw in school in the 50's.....very good ...

Weird and cruel..just like 1908 was!

Beautifully eerie.


9e7a0c0d421c9c471bd47db3de680919? m 0089

sad and so beautiful

Very interesting.

Early footage ... A different take on motion studies a la Muybridge... Interesting bit shows human curiosity about other creatures at work.

Well, this is the first time that I felt a little sorry for a disgusting fly; but, quite ingenious work.