Photography and mathematics are rarely mentioned in the same sentence. If your like me then the ‘m’ word conjures feelings of high school, dread and misunderstanding. Yet, one woman has a great love for both and is on a mission to convey her passion for maths through photography in the hope others learn to appreciate it the way she does. That woman on a mission is Nikki Graziano, a maths and photography student at Rochester Institute of Technology, NY.
Her collection of images, entitled Found Functions, are random shots of natural habitats which she manages to graphically represent using complex mathematical equations. In a recent interview with Revolver, Graziano said of her work:
“My found functions series is the only project that I’ve worked on as a cohesive series. My aim was (is still) to sort of take a step back and focus on sublimity and the gaze in both an aesthetic and mathematical way, to communicate both ends of beauty in the natural world.”
Graziano doesn’t necessarily go out to look for hidden functions within the hedgerows but instead chooses an image she likes from many taken on various walks and drives then orchestrates the graphical forms by tweaking the mathmetical function. The resultant undulating images are then superimposed onto the original photograph it represents, producing an entirely new view of nature and its forms.
Regardless of your mathematical abilities, the images are intriguing and appealing. The Found Functions series highlights the often overlooked mathematical component of nature and gives the viewer the opportunity to see something new. For some the end result may be a renewed love of maths, but for me Found Functions is more about appreciating the way we look at the world.
See more of Nikki’s work on her website.