Monday, September 15, 2014

Splashing water

Awhile back I finally tried something I've seen a lot online, but thought it wouldn't work for me. I figured I needed better lighting, but after some success with catching drops in mid air (see this post), I felt more confident about catching the splashes.

It ended up being really fun and slightly addictive. I want to do it again sometime once I track down some new backdrops.

Here's basically what I did:
I filled up a clear glass bowl of water and stacked it on top of a smaller bowl placed upside down in the sink. This was just to give me the height I needed for a good camera angle--you can find other methods, of course.

Then I used my macro lens, tripod and external flash. I pointed the flash up at the ceiling for reflective light. Then I turned the faucet on a slow drip. Here's what my setup looked like:

I wanted to add some color to help the drops and splashes show. That's where I had fun experimenting with different scrapbook papers I had on hand.

I started with something fairly pale but the more vivid colors seemed to work better in showing detail (I had to pump up the color in the above photo).

The most effective paper was one with a very glittery/shiny texture. It helped bring out more dimension in the drops with my flash reflecting off the foily surface. I have it pictured here, though it's hard to make out the sparkles:

But this first method of having that same paper under and behind the bowl was a little too much craziness in the resulting images. The glittery appearance detracted from the droplets. I found having this glittery paper under the bowl gave a nice color from below, and then putting something else non-glittery as a backdrop meant the drops could have two colors intertwining.

I also tried using foil, but wasn't as interested in the effect, even though I think this picture is cute (if a little out of focus). Like a boiling pot of potion!

One of the funnest things, which was unexpected, was seeing the little sculptures that resulted from the splashing droplets! I shared a few on Instagram back when I first took the pictures. There were the more obvious things, like the planet/spacey image above.

And then I noticed I got a Mary-like droplet. (I joked that she's either holding twins or very well-endowed, though. :D [Am I allowed to say that here?])

I found lots of my images had what appeared to be a kneeling, robed man or woman. Holy water! These could either look like Mary or just a praying nun or something.

She's definitely in prayer. Do not disturb.

Here's a wise man. Merry Christmas.

A slightly more abstract wise man or kneeling figure of some sort.

This one looks like an artistic sculpture of a woman. Notice here the effect I was talking about where the pink from under the bowl is giving nice outlines against the paler blue behind it.

Maybe I'm crazy, but doesn't this look like a kitty playing with some yarn or something?

To me this looked like what I remember of that rat from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Shredder, is it? No, it's Splinter. Whatever! Anyway, doesn't it look like him? Or some other robed rat kind of hunched and looking pensive.

And a ghost!

It's okay if you see something different in these (if anything besides just water). Those were my first impressions and they have stuck with me each time I re-look at the pictures, but let me know if you disagree. :)


  1. Ha-the last two do look like Splinter and a ghost! That's hilarious. :)

    1. Oh good, I'm glad you can see it too! :) Thanks!

  2. That totally looks like Splinter! And I saw the same thing you did in the others too : )

    These are really really cool, thanks for posting them (including the setup)!

    1. Thanks, Dan! If you say it looks like Splinter, then I'm totally convinced. :) You were my deciding person.

      I'm glad you liked them!

  3. I agree with most of your sightings, but the kitty with yarn looked, to me, like a young boy with a baseball cap and tennis shoes sitting kind of hunched looking over an edge. (Is that a run-on sentence?)

    It's all good! Love, Mom

  4. Ha, yep I can see your figures! I really liked the one with the chevron behind and the pink beneath, but they're all quite nice.

  5. I agree on all! These are really cool. I'm glad you enjoy experimenting. It's fun to see the results.



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...