Finding Vibrant Moments in High School Life with @markotto
For more bold, bright snapshots from the new school year, follow @markotto on Instagram.
Seventeen-year-old Mark Otto first started experimenting with color when he was living abroad in Hungary, away from his family and friends. “I realized the city felt a little too dark and it made me a little sad,” he says. “I started to use Instagram to showcase the few colorful things I could find.”
After he returned to Ohio this year, he continued to use photography—and minimalism—as a way to express himself. “Minimalism kind of showcases the color as the subject instead of the background,” he explains. “I’d have to say that colors are probably the best thing to happen to our universe.”
Mark makes a point to frame unextraordinary objects—things that his friends see around them every day—as a way to emphasize his particular perspective on the world. “People get to see how I see things,” he says.
And it’s not just about him. From Polaroids of his friends to a back-to-school pencil set, his Instagram feed also uniquely, and unabashedly, explores what it’s like to be in high school. “I believe that our generation is using the internet to make connections and showcase our art,” he says. “Young adults totally own the Internet world.”
While most nudibranchs, or sea slugs, crawl and graze, the melibe sweeps its hood through the water like a net, capturing unsuspecting tiny drifters. A fringe of tentacles interlock and trap prey as the hood collapses to help the slug digest its meal.
Melibes may be expert plankton snatchers, but how do these soft-bodied invertebrates escape being a meal? Researchers have followed their noses to the melibe’s uniquely fruity smell—noxious secretions which may ward off nibbling fish. They can also “swim” away from predators by wiggling from side to side.
Living on giant kelp fronds or sea grass, melibes live higher up in the water column than most seafloor-bound nudibranchs. They’ve adapted well to the vertical life—as you can see in the background, their white ribbon eggs hang and sway with currents.