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Hi Justin, very nice first try on these. While I have not done these particular types of shots, I do like to do falling water drops. I think the principal is much the same.
I use the following:
Nikon 60mm macro
Camera on tripod
Remote release ( but not absolutely necessary)
White Poster board for background to bounce the flash
Manual settings on the camera-
Shutter usually from 1/160 to 1/250
Aperture from f/8 to f/16
Flash settings - I normally use the TTL , but if doing manual - 1/4 to 1/16 power
Flash is off camera pointed to the white poster board. I normally put the...Show more →
First off, thank you so much - your post was extremely informative! And those reflections in the water drops are insane! I have an external flash but it's at intermediate level and I'm still learning how to use it. I can sync it with the on-camera flash and that's gotten me good results.
Anyways, this will probably sound really stupid but why is the flash needed to "freeze" the water? I did a search on it but many of the top results just tell me that I'll need a flash to do it. Is it because lots of times water drop pictures are done indoors? The pics I posted in my first post were taken outdoors and I didn't use any sort of flash (I actually wasn't even aware it was a necessity) and I actually did a burst of about 5 shots at 1/2000th sec each to catch the whole motion.
Would using the flash contribute anything outdoors? For the double shot glass picture in particular, timing it is really tricky and setting it up again is slightly annoying, that's why I was doing rapid fire.
I practiced a bit indoors in a bathroom. I didn't have anyone to help me out this this time so I had to pull the trigger and release the glass by myself. The flash was immensely helpful though, I did f/16 at 1/250 exposure, which seemed to be more than fast enough to capture the motion. I noticed that with f/16 the splashes were definitely clearer, though I guess since there's such a random factor not everything will always fall in the plane of focus
Here's a sample shot. Don't mind the background (the bathroom -_-) since it's f/16 and I don't exactly have a setup for these types of pictures.
This one is f/8
DSC_5157 by justindong, on Flickr
This one is f/16
DSC_5161 by justindong, on Flickr