Utah is known for the Holy War – Red v. Blue. Utes v. Cougars. Right v. Wrong. I stand on the correct side of this epic battle. Originally, I began this photo with a red poster board in the background, and a black foam board for the other half. But the black wasn’t as vibrant as the solid red, so I found the only other piece of poster board I had at home – blue.
Canon 60D | 100mm Macro Lens | 30″ | f/14 | ISO 100 | RAW
The challenge with photographing glass objects is that my lighting source ends up as a flare on the reflective surface. How do you beat that? You place the light source behind the glasses and illuminate the background. It worked with my lightbulb photo I took a while back, so when I set out to take this photo, I used a similar technique.
After filling the glasses up with water, placing them in front of my backdrop and lining up the camera so the forward center glass was positioned precisely in the middle, I adjusted my camera settings and began taking my photos. Since I was in my pitch-black basement with no exterior lighting, I was able to allow for a very long exposure. I set the camera on a two-second delay so that once I triggered the shutter, I could get the LED Flashmate light positioned above and behind the glasses. After holding it for 30 seconds, I would go back to see how the attempt looked. A few minor adjustments and another shot.
In all, I like the look. But if I were to take the shot again, I would run my glasses through the dishwasher and then boil some water before pouring it into the glasses. This would help the glasses look more clear, because as I illuminated the exposure on the RAW photo, it really brought out all the floatings – after all, the goblets were purchases from Deseret Industries (so you don’t know what’s been in them).
Yesterday I shared the flower photo I shot in my backyard using a macro lens. I also provided a link to a photo on my Flickr page that used a similar concept. But I thought the photo was so funny that I just had to share it as its own blog post.
Canon 60D | 100mm Macro Lens | 1/20 | f/25 | ISO 400 | RAW
Hope you get a laugh out of this photo, too.
I’ve seen this type of photo circulating online for a while and have always wanted to try and capture it myself. Since I didn’t get a decent macro lens until last December, and at that point all the grass and flowers were covered in snow, I finally got out today to give it a shot. After capturing the dandelion in the water droplet (as seen below), I decided to have a little photography fun. Check out my “Help! I’m trapped in a water droplet” photo on Flickr.
Canon 60D | 100mm Macro Lens | 1/6 | f/18 | ISO 100 | RAW
Wondering how I took it? Here’s a walk-through of what I did so you can try it on your own.
Beyond the photography equipment, I also needed a squirt bottle and scissors. Oh yeah… and long grass and a few flowers, too!
I found my spot of long grass in my backyard, and after setting up the camera on the Manfrotto tripod really close to the ground, I whipped out the squirt bottle. I began squirting the grass just in front of the camera lens (NOTE: If you do this, put your hand over the end of the lens so you don’t get water droplets on your glass). Once the water started to collect on a blade of grass, I arranged my camera as close as I could while being able to focus.
I then pulled a bright yellow dandelion from my front yard (it was the only “flower” I had on hand) and placed it just behind the droplet. Just be careful and don’t hit the blade of grass that has the droplets on it or you’ll have to re-spray. After snapping off a test shot, I noticed a few blades of grass that I didn’t like. That’s where the scissors came into play. I did a little lawn mowing to eliminate rogue blades.
It took some patients and rearranging to get it just right, but it is doable. The sun was directly behind me and lower in the sky, so it reflected in the droplets. When I tried to stand in the way to block the sun, my silhouette ended up reflected in the photo, which seemed more out of place than the reflecting sun. I also played with quite a few settings on the f/stop for different depth of field looks.
I hope those are enough details, but if you have any other questions, let me know and I’d be happy to share more info if needed.
After spending 20 minutes getting everything setup for the shot – the catch basin filled and positioned, the water dropper aligned, flash settings configured and synced with the camera, the tripod arranged and the Canon 60D positioned – I just had to keep shooting until my camera card was full. Needless to say, I had a ton of photos to comb through, many of which had no splash or were underlit.
I was glad to have shot in RAW so I could make any adjustments to help highlight or change the look for the photo to accentuate different aspects. I created a set on Flickr with my favorites from the photo shoot, but here is my favorite shot from this go-around.
I’m sorry I don’t have the camera settings listed for this photo. I’ve already pulled them from my camera and am not able to see them (that I know of anyway).
I like this photo because the ripples in the water area creating a sort of target, with the objective being a splash dead center. However, the water drop that is milliseconds from splashing into the water is slightly off target, which I feel adds to the interest in the photo.
My last blog post shared a photo of my daughter running along the beach with the low-setting sun. Another photo I shot at that same San Franciscan beach was of my son collecting a few of the bazillion sand dollars that littered the beach. I love the innocence of this photo, too, along with the reflection of my son in the water retreating from the beach.
I am thinking of printing the photo on canvas and hanging it in our home. But I am torn between the black and white version of the photo, or the color version. I really like his blue jacket, but I’m not a fan of the orange color of his face. The black and white kills both of those elements, but still makes it a great photo.
If you were printing this for your home, would you go black and white OR color?
When I saw the email about this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge, I thought the write-up about it makes a great point on photo challenge submissions. I have a pet peeve about that, which I will most likely elaborate on in future post. But for now, I’ll share the photo I shot and am submitting to the photo challenge.
I was in a meeting and didn’t have my camera on me when I saw the post. Then it was one of those CrAzY Fridays at work where you’re frantically trying to get stuff done so you don’t have to bring work home with you over the weekend. (Which probably means I shouldn’t be taking the time to write this blog post, but I was eager to get my photo up).
At about 1:30, when I finally decided that I better grab some lunch, since I skipped breakfast and didn’t want to get sick before dinner, I headed out to grab some food. I decided to bring my trusty GoPro along to get a shot that I’ve been thinking of taking for a few weeks now. Carpe Diem!
I put back the sunroof, set the camera to take one photo every .5 seconds, and held it outside of the car. I didn’t expect to get so much of a reflection in the windshield, but I liked the final result. One that I really liked was of a cross walk directly in front of the car, and perfectly reflected in the windshield, but the camera was off-kilter (that’s what happens when you’re driving and photographing at the same time).
So that’s my shot. I’ll rant about my photo challenge submission pet peeves later!