Quan-SEM

I chose to examine closely a piece of pencil lead:

When Donna started operating the joystick for the first time, I instantly felt as though she was operating a rover that was charting a new world. It was so interesting how zooming in far enough completely erases all sense of familiarity, and establishes a whole new terrain void of all sense of scale.

This is an example of that unfamiliarity of scale. At one point, I thought I was seeing a beach within a piece of pencil lead. If not for the information displayed on the bottom and my crude colorization, I wonder if people would be able to tell.

Overall, I think there are great parallels and contrasts to be drawn from seeing the extremes of the minuscule and the massive. I noticed that I felt a similar sense of nebulous beauty from the SEM experience as I do when I go to the planetarium or look up with a telescope. However, I think there is a great contrast in that understanding the vastness of space could make one feel absolutely insignificant, while the SEM images might make that same person feel as if they are the center of the universe.