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World’s lowest valued coins captured in 400-megapixel photos


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Photographer Martin John Callanan has created large photo prints, depicting the lowest active currencies from several countries around the globe.

Many countries in the world have a one cent coin. They may be called differently, but all of them refer to the same thing. Unfortunately, nobody truly understands why governments keep producing them, considering the fact that their manufacturing costs exceed their value.

“The Fundamental Units” project consists of photos of lowest denomination coins

A lot of nations have expressed their desire to shed these coins, but such procedures are lengthy and they would require a lot of efforts and spending. In order to make sure that our children will get to see a glimpse of our lowest currencies, Martin John Callanan has begun working on a project called “The Fundamental Units”.

The photographer wants to “save” these coins and to organize exhibitions to show people the least valued money currently being used in multiple countries.

Alicona infinite focus 3D optical microscope used for capturing the images

Callanan agreed an unusual partnership with the National Physical Laboratory, located in Teddington, UK, allowing the photographer to make use of the best microscopes in Europe. According to the researchers, the Alicona microscope provides infinite 3D focus and it is the perfect equipment to capture the coin images.

Taking a photo of a coin with a microscope is not that easy, since more than four thousand exposures are required. Additionally, the exposures are processed over a period of three days, while the results are simply astonishing.

A print measures 1.2 x 1.2-meters and each photo is clocked at 400-megapixels

Each photo measures about 400-megapixels and all of them have been printed on 1.2 x 1.2-meters material. The prints cover a surface of a little less than 4 square feet and they have been displayed at the Galeria Horrach Moya, in Palma, Spain.

The photographer is planning to capture even more coins and to take his exhibition all around the world.

Fifteen lowest domination coins down, 151 to go

For the time being, “The Fundamental Units” projects consists of the lowest denomination coins from the following countries: Australia, Bulgaria, Chile, Croatia, Denmark, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Myanmar, Poland, Romania, Swaziland, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. Additionally, Euro’s one cent coin is also available in the collection.

However, the Alicona infinite focus 3D optical microscope is still waiting to complete the list with the world’s 166 lowest domination coins, but the photographer will keep us updated once he manages to snap more photos.

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