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Water drop photography

Discussion in 'Through the Lens' started by advan, Feb 15, 2013.

  1. advan

    advan oOOo Staff Member

    • Like Like x 1
  2. that was a very cool vid. Looks like its quite a process, but the end results are actually pretty interesting. The images look great.
    I bet with a bit of practice your pics could be awesome, and have us all amazed... but whats new about that? :)
     
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  3. advan

    advan oOOo Staff Member

    Thanks for the confidence Steven! I've been talking to Michael about this for a bit and he has started experimenting. I'll let him post some pics he's shot. ;)

    Some more awesome shots. --> Clicky
     
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  4. papilio

    papilio Arachnoprince Old Timer

    Wow where's you find this vid Chad? Love it!!

    Markus Reugels is user Maianer on flickr ... his photostream is at --> http://www.flickr.com/photos/maianer/




    Here are some shots of the easy part -- when the drop leaves the dripper.

    I jammed the bottom half of a pen casing through a hole in the bottom of a tupperware bowl, sealing it in place with a little modeling clay. Once the bowl is filled you will of course just get a solid little stream of water flowing through the pen, but loosely stuff a small wad of paper towel into the top end of the pen and adjust it until you're getting drips (about 2 to 3 per second is best ... faster than that and the tiny secondary drop doesn't form).

    Improvise any way to suspend this bowl about a foot off the table (with a catch-bowl beneath). Just set up the camera on its tripod and focus on the tip of the dripper (pen tip). Some focusing tweaks will be necessary once beginning to capture shots of the drops. A remote shutter control is a big help as it avoids having to touch and potentially move the camera body off-focus.

    Even though it's straightforward to capture the drop as it breaks away, it happens much too quickly to intentionally capture every time. Just click the shutter at about the time it's ready to drip and a few shots will end up showing something interesting. :) In getting these images I took about 300 shots, doing my best each time to have the flash go off just as the drop was breaking away, but the best I could manage was about 25 images which showed a nice formation of some sort.

    These were shot with a bouquet of flowers on the table just six inches or so behind the dripper, providing both a colorful background and something nice for the drops to refract.



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    p.s. Try it with milk too! ;)

    ---------- Post added 02-15-2013 at 04:22 PM ----------

    Thanks for another great link Chad! So where are your water shots?? :biggrin:
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2013
    • Like Like x 7
  5. YEP... huge fan already haha. You guys sure capture awesome stuff.

    Im a huge fan of lava lamps (i could stare at one for hours) and that is sort of what the drops look like when theyre photographed as stationary droplets. I also like the mushroom look too, when they impact with the water below..


    What would be awesome is to maybe snap photos of messing around with mercury. I know its poisionous if ingested or handled, but if done carfully it would be awesome to see the liquid "separating/splitting"

    I used to have some of the necklaces containing silver mercury (got them in mexico) and discovered how cool it looks when one of the glass neclace vial dropped onto the floor.
     
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  6. zonbonzovi

    zonbonzovi Creeping beneath you Staff Member

    What would you guys say is a minimum shutter speed to attempt capture of the droplets falling let alone the moment of intersection with another drop/surface?
     
  7. papilio

    papilio Arachnoprince Old Timer

    Right Steven, Lava Lamps exhibit precisely the same hydrodynamic forces at work. :D If you've ever seen any slow-motion movies of water drops, they'd remind you even more of that lovely 70s icon! :cool:

    ---------- Post added 02-15-2013 at 04:50 PM ----------

    Shutter speed isn't important as it's the extremely short burst of the flash which feezes the drop in place. There's still a bit of motion blur evident this way, try shooting high-speed synch to really get the images sharp. (I haven't tried this yet but it should help.)
     
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  8. advan

    advan oOOo Staff Member

    I haven't started yet, I will try some tomorrow. Here's a shot I took while messing with shutter speeds a few months back that sparked my interest. :D

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  9. papilio

    papilio Arachnoprince Old Timer

    :D Yeah that's the one I meant.

    The formations you've got going on there are amazing!
     
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  10. Formerphobe

    Formerphobe Arachnoking Arachnosupporter

    Water is amazing stuff anyway. Great pics, you guys!
     
    • Like Like x 2
  11. papilio

    papilio Arachnoprince Old Timer

    These are fun!

    zonbonzovi, I was wrong about using High-speed synch for the flash ... I hadn't thought it through, that would actually make it worse. Even when using the strobe in normal mode I couldn't come close to freezing the motion of the drops as they approached the splash pool, just elongated blurs. Turned out that the trick is to go manual on the strobe and turn the power down to 1/64 which reduces the burst duration and freezes the motion beautifully.



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    Last edited: Feb 16, 2013
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  12. advan

    advan oOOo Staff Member

    Insane shots Michael! :clap: I don't think I can compete! :worship:

    Here are my first attempts, so be nice. :eek:

    Set-up
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    Shots
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    Blue painters tape over the slave flash
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    Blue tape on flash and orange food dye added to the water in the dropper.
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    Last edited: Feb 16, 2013
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  13. papilio

    papilio Arachnoprince Old Timer

    A baby medicine dropper? You're just kidding, right Chad?? LOL

    No automatic water feed, I can't imagine how you did it. :eek:


    I love the orange and blue shots!! :D




    Def better than my own first attempts from last night, before I figured out the strobe thing and came up with a different way to illuminate the scene. These all show the bad motion blur caused by having the strobe set at full-power flashes ...


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    ---------- Post added 02-16-2013 at 02:25 PM ----------

    Apparently there's no way to do the really cool colliding drops photos without an electronic trigger such as this -> The Mumford Time Machine. :(
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2013
    • Like Like x 1
  14. advan

    advan oOOo Staff Member

    Yep! Hehe I have the timer set on the camera and right before the shutter is released I squeeze! It took me a while to get timing right! :D


    That would be nice! I'm all about DIY, it feels better when you get that imagine then having a machine and timing system do all the work! It takes away from the challenge and fun!

    Round 2

    I ditched the tray I was using and used a blue glass cooking tray that gives off the blue tint to the water. I also moved the flash around and found if it is directly in front of the camera(on the other side of the tray) it gives almost a glass feel to the surface of the water.

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    Color dye :D
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    Blue tape on flash for these next two
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    This was defiantly a fun little project to try out and a nice get away from shooting spiders! :D
     
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  15. yep.. those are bad ass chad.
    for simple ideas, the payoff is great.
     
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  16. papilio

    papilio Arachnoprince Old Timer

    Re: your technique ... SHOCK AND AWE Chad! :eek: LOL When your 'timing' is a mater of microseconds ... wow. :worship: Yet again your innate ability stuns, have to say it. :D

    As we both quickly figured out, illumination from the back makes all the difference.


    Same here, when I found out that those stunning shots of 'fluid sculpture' were the results of technogear and not skill/ingenuity, I lost interest pretty quick. I'm pleased with the results I got as well as being impressed with yours, I'd say we've taken the manual approach about as far as it can go. A most enjoyable little diversion, thanks Chad! :) Pretty pictures, but ...




    tough to beat shooting esoteric wildlife! ;)


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    p.s. Sheesh ... having seen endless T photos I've shot, my dad takes one look at these drip pics and excitedly tells me that I've GOT to enter them in the State Fair!!

    :wall:
     
  17. mcluskyisms

    mcluskyisms Arachnoangel Old Timer

    UK
    Nice thread! :)

    What kinda lens is best for this, Im assuming a good macro?
     
  18. advan

    advan oOOo Staff Member

    Thanks Chris! I used a 100mm macro but it isn't needed. When April came over we used her 50mm lens and it worked just as well. The key is having a external flash set to the lowest power so the flash duration is the shortest. Moving the flash around will give you much different lighting, so move it until your happy with the lighting. :)
     
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  19. mcluskyisms

    mcluskyisms Arachnoangel Old Timer

    UK
    Cool, I may have to have a go at that! Cheers. :)
     
    • Like Like x 1
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