Friday, 1 August 2014

Butterfly Banknotes

My print - "Can't Buy Me Love" has been getting a lot of love of late from clients. It is currently being featured on the homepage of Aubergine Art, as I am one of the new artists on the roster of that gallery. It was also recently named "Print of the Week" by the good folks at Jealous Gallery. There are some remaining copies which can be obtained at Jealous , Aubergine, or direct from myself via my website.
The Rowley Gallery also have one of my 3-D collage pieces (Fiscal Ball), created from original banknotes available for purchase. I've been working on some more currency based pieces and looking at banknotes decorated with butterflies and birds for inspiration.
In other more science based news, the natural iridescent qualities of butterflies may also be used in the future development of new banknotes. Scientists have found ways to mimic their iridescent colours and minute scales, and will be putting their discoveries to use in the security and production of paper currency and credit cards, making it harder for them to be forged. They have created artificial structures that reflect light in the same ways as the minute scales on butterfly wings.

These artificial structures will be used to encrypt information in optical signatures on money and other valuable items such as passports. The science teams used a combination of nanofabrication techniques to make scales which produce the same vivid colours as real butterfly scales. Nanofabrication is used to create incredibly small devices which are measured in nanometres. One nanometre is equivalent to a millionth of a millimetre.
Scientists believe the butterfly may be using its natural iridescent colour to encrypt itself, appearing one colour to potential mates and another to predators. If its eyes see fellow butterflies as bright blue, while predators see only green patches in a green environment, then it can remain visible to members of its own species whilst simultaneously hiding from predators. Below are some more fantastically detailed, colourful examples of butterflies and other winged things on paper currency.