Claire Niehaus is currently researching the Effects of Cannabis on Neuroinflammation and Stroke Recovery. In my photograph I tried to illustrate plant-based pharmaceuticals by using natural objects: poplar tree leaves and the Northern Bedstraw plant (coincidentally, Bedstraw plants were used to make hot compresses to stop bleeding and soothe sore muscles). The leafminer trails on the leaves resemble the physical appearance
of the human brain while the Bedstraw shadows bear a resemblance to individual neurons and synapses. I created a double exposure image by strategically layering two photographs illustrating leafminer markings and the shadows cast from a Bedshaw plant. Double exposure images are relatively new for me, simply because I greatly prefer creating dynamic single exposure images. However, Claire is fascinated by research, and I thought it a perfect time to research and explore the process of digital double exposure photography. The final piece successfully exemplifies my visual interpretation of Claire’s research by only featuring organic plant-based materials and relying on the beautiful detailed consequences of nature’s processes. The configurations featured in the image symbolically illustrate inflammation, neural activity, and the structure of a human brain —together creating a metaphorical map, one which curious minds may follow, scientists and artists alike.