For their ongoing series Zero Degrees, South African photographer Bruce Boyd and artist Tharien Smith photograph flowers frozen in blocks of ice.
Why? Both avid nature lovers, they wanted to portray flowers in a unique way. After weeks of experimentation, they accidentally dropped a frozen block of flowers into their swimming pool, and their project was born.
"When immersed in water, the ice cracked and created a totally unique canvas," says Bruce. "Within the process of freezing and thawing, strange and exciting things happened. The warmth and romance of flowers starkly contrasted with the cold sterility of the ice and a beautiful melancholy emerged."
Since then they have photographed hundreds of frozen flower arrangements. They collect flowers (with permission) from local gardens, hedges and trees, arrange them in plastic containers and freeze them overnight. The flowers are then photographed at dawn in the nearest pool, a mountain stream or water container.
"I find it fascinating that ice can preserve something and at the same time also enhance or distort the beauty of it," says Tharien. "For a few fleeting moments, we are treated to this preserved beauty, the past encapsulated perfectly, before the ice melts and flowers wilt."