Christian Spencer, a photographer and artist, was standing on his porch in Rio de Janeiro when he discovered an incredible find. A lovely prism effect developed when the black Jacobin hummingbird soared with the sun striking its open wings. It seemed like its body was formed of rainbows at the time.
Spencer documented the bird’s movements for a video called The Dance of Time in 2011. The film went on to win ten international awards, including three for best film. But, hummingbirds, that wasn’t the end of the rainbow. Spencer returned to the subject some years later. “I decided to use my camera to shoot the same occurrence,” he tells My Modern Met. The resulting series is called Winged Prism, and the photographs show “a secret of nature that cannot be seen with human eyes,” according to Spencer.
Although Winged Prism appears to be too mystical to be real, Spencer claims that no computer alteration was used. “There is no special technology,” he says, “simply light diffraction across the wings of this unique hummingbird.” The breathtaking beauty it creates is what makes these photographs so unique. “Nobody could have ever imagined this was a reality,” he continues. “I get emails every day from individuals all around the world who are moved by these photographs.”