I’ve had the app and the dongle for a while and other than some time lapse vids of the journey home from work I’ve never actually used it. This week I finally got round to purchasing a 2.5mm to 3.5 mm cable so I can use it to trigger the flash instead of the camera and subsequently started thinking about what I could use it for.
These were a hastily set up test session to try and get the setting for the ‘Bang’ trigger to work – Had a few issues initially whereupon the camera kept snapping away after the noise but after a few tweaks I think I got it sorted. I know that these are a bit rough round the edges, but as test shots I’m quite happy with them. All I need to do now is set something up properly with a decent background (not the shiny sink), replace water with milk (or cream) and swap out the smelly pickled onion for something a little more attractive……
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.
So, that’s week 3. Would appreciate any constructive crit from you guys as well.
Playing with the flashguns again. After last week’s attempt with a dark background thought I’d try against a white one this time.
Used both flashes on around 1/16 power to blow out the reflector, with the glass gaffer taped to a breadboard. I learnt today that wet Gaffa tape isn’t actually that sticky, and it’s a lot harder to blow out the background and keep the glass exposed than I thought it would be in the space I had available (Glass was probably only around 12 inches in front of the background).
Had quite a lot of Tidying up to do on the background.
Another visit to the Kitchen sink – for a 10 minute loon. Didn’t produce many keepers and the ISO was way out of it’s comfort zone so gave it the treatment to try and make the noise part of the image. Not sure if it worked or not but it’s better then the one I had before I started……
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.
Topical – Especially after the events up in Cumbria this weekend. Was on the M25 this morning on my wayu round to the office, enjoying the views at a sedate 20 mph for most of the 63 miles. Bored witless with only Wogan on the radio to keep me company, I thought it might be an idea to try and capture the essence of the moment.
Actually, that’s crap. I was just bored so I got the camera out. I cannot stress enough how dangerous (and illegal) it is to use an SLR whilst driving, and can assure you that I was perfectly stationary at the time.
Road Trip - the M25 at it's very best
Quite liked the effect of the lights in the rain for this one. But remember kids, clunk click every trip.