Week 3 – Colour

Week 3 - Colours

Week 3 has been a slightly disappointing one for me as I had this idea from the outset and haven’t quite pulled off what I had in mind. I mentioned before that whilst this is a fun challenge, my personal aim was to try to push myself outside my comfort zone each week both creatively or technically. so far it’s all turned out OK, but with the shots this week I’m just not happy with what I got compared to what I had in mind. I don’t think it was down to the technical side of things as much as it may have been with my technique. Perhaps I rushed it a little. Perhaps I didn’t prepare properly. I do know that some of the shots were ‘missed’ because of the time it was taking for my flash units to recycle.

The idea was to have a tank of water with different coloured food dye dropped in at the same time. I’m not an octopus and didn’t have a helper to hand so I couldn’t do this. I did notice though that once dropped, the dispersal was fairly slow, so I could have got a few colours in one after the other and still got the shots I wanted (i.e interesting patterns in different colours). That said, I seem to have missed the ‘best’ patterns because my flashes were taking a long time to re-cycle. Not something that’s usually a problem as I tend to have them at lower power than i did for today’s shoot.

I’ve included some shots of the set-up this week if anyone wants to try to have a go themselves at a later date. Should have been fairly straightforward.

Flashed were aligned next to the vase aimed at a white background (both on about half power to assure an even spread with enough light to completely overexpose the background.
Camera was on the tripod, pre focussed about half wat through the vase (I dipped a straw in and focussed on that).
Shutter speed was 1/200 on some and 1/250 on others – That’s the maximum synch speed I get – So exposure was controlled by aperture.

It wasn’t a total fail as I learned a couple of things (about my patience) and how to perhaps improve for another shoot another day.

1) Preparation – Always make sure that all of your batteries are charged before starting
2) Position of lights – These should have been slightly behind the vase I think. This would have made the reflections easier to deal with on the curved vase.
3) Props – A square tank would have been better than a curved vase, reflection and imperfections are much easier to manage if the glass is square on to the camera
4) Props – eye droppers would have worked much better than manually tipping the colouring into the water. I never had any
5) Helpers – Always handy
6) Keep going till you get the shot you want. Whilst there was no real time pressure to end the shoot I stopped before I got the shot I wanted. Should have just kept plugging away till I was happy.

Week 3 - Colours

So, that’s week 3. Would appreciate any constructive crit from you guys as well.

Week 3 - Colours

Let the week 4 planning commence.

Smoking

Smoke - Inverted

First time playing with incense and flashguns with an extremely limited window of playtime. Minimal Post processing applied to these, the differences in colour I’m assuming are down to the different makes of flashgun and the camera auto white balance.

Smoke_005

Shiny happy Balls

Following on from the Baubles theme, I polished my balls this morning for an impromptu shoot. Looked a lot better in my head than it does here but might polish up OK when I get time to do some PP rather than just a quick conversion. Failing that I could always try it again with some proper lighting, a tripod and spome more time.

Round shiny and happy

Round shiny and happy

Iced water and processed peas

Watery Abstracts

Following on from the plain droplet shots I found myself with another spare few minutes and tried something completely new…..

Learned quite a bit.

1) clean the glass, then clean it again
2) Frozen peas don’t make much of a splash
3) trying to drop things in a glass of water and photograph them at the same time is tricky
3) clean the glass, then clean the glass again
4) clean the glass
5) Bubbles form in the water without dropping anything in – nuisance.
6) Clean the glass.

Watery Abstracts

Some new photos – Water drop abstracts

Water drop Abstracts - Crown

It’s cold, but not snowing yet. Been a while since I’ve taken anything at all, let alone anything I’ve had to think about. Only tried this once before and was quite pleased with the results, so as I had a spare 10 minutes or so, thought I’d have another go.

These were taken on the 30D with a remote triggered Speedlight 430EX off to the side of the sink, need to get some coloured card to bounce the light off – Be interesting to see how it affects the outcome.

Water Drop Abstracts

Water Drop Abstracts - Crown

Last of the snow pictures

Well it looks like Winter has now settled back to it’s usual dull grey drizzle for the time being, making special shots that much harder to come across. I’ve not got anything for the January entry in the 2010 hotographer of the Year Competition yet, but have a few ideas in mind (it’s just finding the time to stage them. Hopefully the miserable weather will serve to inspire more creative indoor shots instead, especially as I have found a custom function for focussing without using the shutter button. It’ll be interesting to see whether I can get to grips with it.
In the meantime, I’ll share the last of the snow pictures with you – I call it cupped, should have a poem to go with it at some point, just need to get my thinking cap on.

Cupped