Part 3

Exercise 3.1

Water Drops and Cascades

I created a series of water drop pictures by setting up a studio in my shower. I put a glass bowl of water on a table with a pipette suspended over the bowl.  I set up an off-camera flash, and the camera was mounted on a tripod (outside the shower) with a 100mm macro lens.  To get the focus, I worked out where the drop would fall, held a pencil in the water in the same place and manually set the focus on it.  Nevertheless many shots were out of focus as the drops didn’t always go quite where I expected.  All the shots were taken using a remote shutter controller.  As I squeezed the pipette I worked out when to trigger the shutter.  There were many misses!! The whole exercise took 2 days to complete, and I took over 900 photos.  Thank goodness for digital cameras!

The first set of photos were taken by putting the glass bowl onto a coloured card and filling it with clear water.  The pipette was also filled with clear water.  The camera was set on 1/200 second, ISO 400 and f22.  Because I used a flash the shutter speed did not effect the photograph.

The second set of photographs were taken by putting the glass bowl onto a white card and filling the pipette with food colouring.  The camera settings remained the same as for the previous group of photos.

I tried yellow and red food colouring, but the yellow didn’t show up clearly, and the red looked like I was dripping blood into the water.  I haven’t included those examples here.

Finally, I attempted to recreate Harold Edgerton’s Milk Drop Coronet by putting the glass bowl onto a piece of black card, and dropping milk from the pipette into the water.  Not quite the effect I wanted but I was pleased with them anyway.

Long Exposure using ND filters

This was my first attempt at using my newly acquired ND filters to photograph the cascades at Blenheim Palace.  I wanted to use the filters to capture the movement of water so that it appeared silky and fluid.

This photograph was taken from a distance using a tripod, remote shutter and an ND filter.  Although I like the composition, I was disappointed with the white balance.  I had set it to auto, but after I saw this photo, I changed it to “cloudy”.  The subsequent photographs show the water in a more realistic colour.

IMG_1896 reduced

This photograph was taken from the bridge (shown in the above photograph) and I was able capture the movement of the water as well as capturing the twigs in sharp contrast to the moving water.  I am pleased with the patterns the water makes as it cascades over the rocks.

IMG_1927 reduced

I wanted to capture the stones, moss and leaves in very clear definition, and at the same time capture the movement of the water.  I was pleased with the contrast between the blurry, fluffy water and the background of stones, moss and leaves.

IMG_1934 reduced

2 thoughts on “Exercise 3.1

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