These conceptual landscapes by Dillon Marsh visualise the amount of copper and diamond extracted from South African mines.

Look closely at the photo above. See that little white pixel in the center? That’s the total amount of diamonds extracted from the famous Kimberly mine. Here’s another look:


Kimberley Mine
1871 – 1914

14.5 million carats of diamonds extracted (detail showing the total diamond production)

These brilliant conceptual landscapes were created by Cape Town-based photographer Dillon Marsh, who shot various copper and diamond mines in South Africa and manipulated the images to visualise the difference in scale between the actual raw material that was extracted and the size of the mine, some of which are hundreds of meters deep.

The photos are part of an ongoing project titled For What Its Worth. From the series’ description: “These images combine photography and computer generated elements in an effort to visualise the output of a mine. The CGI objects represent a scale model of the materials removed from each mine, a solid mass occupying a scene showing the ground from which it was extracted. By doing so, the intention is to create a kind of visualisation of the merits and shortfalls of mining in South Africa, an industry that has shaped the history and economy of the country so radically.”

Read more about the project and view the rest of the photos on Dillon’s Behance portfolio: Part 1 and Part 2. Also view our previous features on Dillon’s work.


West O’okiep Mine, Okiep
1862 to the early 1970s
Over 500m deep, 284,000 tonnes of copper extracted


Koffiefontein Mine
1870 – 2014
7.6 million carats of diamonds extracted


Koffiefontein Mine (detail showing the total diamond production)


Nababeep South Mine, Nababeep
1882 to 2000
Over 500m deep, 302,791.65 tonnes of copper extracted


Jagersfontein Mine
1871 – 1969
9.52 million carats of diamonds extracted


Jagersfontein Mine (detail showing the total diamond production)


Tweefontein Mine, Concordia
1887 – 1904
Over 100m deep, 38,747.7 tonnes of copper extracted


Jubilee Mine, Concordia
1971 – 1973
Over 100m deep, 6,500 tonnes of copper extracted

Photographs shared under the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial licence.