Russian microminiaturist Vladimir Aniskin broke the Guinness World Record for World's Tiniest Book this week, which might leave you to wonder, just how small is the World's Tiniest Book? As it turns out, it's unbelievably small. Aniskin's creations — yes, there are two — are 88 times smaller than the former Guinness World Record holder, and that's not even the most interesting thing about them.
Aniskin's books unseated a tiny Japanese tome, titled Flowers of the Four Seasons, which measured 0.74 x 0.75 millimeters. The Siberian artist's two books are a near-microscopic 0.07 x 0.09 millimeters. That's small enough to fit on a halved poppy seed, and you'll need a sharpened needle to turn the pages.
The artist's two volumes are Alphabet and Levsha: a seven-page Russian alphabet book and a four-page list of other talented microminiaturists. Levsha is the name of the protagonist of an 1881 story about a man who makes horseshoes for a clockwork flea. RT reports that Levsha "lists the names of the masters who managed to achieve similar skill, including" himself.
The process of making microminiature art is so painstaking that Aniskin's heartbeat can ruin his work. He tells RT: "The main difficulty is your own heartbeat, a heartbeat that reaches your finger tips and gets passed on to the instrument, which, in turn, starts fluttering in tune with the heartbeat. You only have half of a second to make the required motion."
Aniskin has worked as a microminiaturist since 1998. Some of his work is on display at a microminiaturist museum in St. Petersburg. In addition to the World's Tiniest Book, Aniskin also created "a caravan of camels inside the eye of a needle, a scene from Winnie the Pooh and set of chess pieces placed on poppy seeds, and a copy of a Sochi Olympic medal, which in only 2 milliliters in diameter."