Tag Archives: speedlight

August 2014 – if at first you don’t succeed

candlefractal
There are too many details for me to share. I know the point of this whole monthly project was to document the process in its entirety but you will have to bear with me as I try to find a good work life hobby hobby hobby family balance.
Yes I too have found myself in the ranks of the over-committed and starting Wednesday get to add a return to university to my already intense schedule. If only I was studying film or something…

I digress – I wanted to take a couple of minutes and probably 2 or 3 posts to fill in the blanks since my last post. No I didn’t give up. I’m not really like that when it comes to things I think I should be good at.
I set out to take a picture with vivid colors involving fractals and I think the creative process is in full swing.

I realized after the last round that I needed a few things – and I probably should have spent more time trying to come up with a storyboard and exactly what I wanted to do with this picture, but over the past 2 days I thought about it and decided I would make a second attempt with more paint and with more mirrors.

I wanted to get reflections of reflections like in a Kaleidoscope and allow the fractal to be created in 2 dimensions.

I bought some crayola washable paints and 5 mirrors from the dollar store…and new batteries for my flash. Always always always have spare batteries for your flash.

Anyway. I played around with mirrors on top of mirrors and tealights and even had a pretty good setup with 5 mirrors and 10 tealights making this super cool pattern (what happened to the paint you ask – I was playing ok, just to see what I could do) and it seemed to work out with fractals in 3 dimensions, maybe not quite as much depth as I had originally hoped, but fractals none the less. Long story short a mirror fell down and spilled candles hot wax and flames all over my backdrop. Yes I am determined to burn down my house.

That aside I was really excited a decided to keep going rearranging a reconfiguring the mirrors and a single tea light.

The result is posted above. I like it.

There were still a few things I knew I needed to fix for the fractal picture.

So ultimately I moved mirrors angles and repositioned back drops and speedlights to get the real high key effect I was going for.

Here is what the setup looked like.

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Notice that I had to surround every angle in white sheets to allows for maximum light to reflect and wash out ever part of the image. I even had to cover my camera to prevent it from being a bold black blob in the picture.

The reverse angle might tell the story a bit better.
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You can see I am using a fairly simple 2 flash setup. The flash behind the mirrors is actually a bounce flash off of my thankfully white ceiling. The speedlight is diffused as wide as it will go with a white reflector to give as much of a soft wrapping light as possible to blow out as much of the white highlights as possible.

In my post processing post (coming up in about 5 minutes). You will see the difference the shallow angle can make in a setup with a mirror like this.

Please feel free to comment below.

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June 2014 – down to the wire

bubbles test 1small

More time is ALWAYS a good thing – almost.

This month I made photography low on the priority list.

Today I planned, set up, shot, post processed and now published a picture that I consider well worthy of being called part of my “2014 photo project”

It probably wont win any awards for “best story” or most imaginative, but it is a testimony of how much creative power lives just under the surface.

My kids remind me of it constantly – the power of imagination – when you are willing to let go of the “rules” are engage an idea fully.

I hope these pictures are as much fun for you as they are for me.

If you have been following along on my monthly project July should prove to be a bit better on the “open spaces front” I still plan to include some of my ideas for wide open spaces, but I will have to save that for next month.

For now. Enjoy some bubbles with some even more fun lighting.

Thanks for looking and reading.

Feel free to share and comment!

bubbles test 4 small

June 2014 setup

So here is the setup for my bubble picture.  I will be putting down a basin to catch the sticky soapy bubbles. 

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I’m not super happy with the back drop.  I may try to black it out if I can as right now I feel the white may take away from the contrast. 

Either way the dof is so shallow at f4 that the background should be quite soft. 

The flash is up top gaving down through the light rig and it produces the speckled catch lights I was hoping for. 

Now it is just a matter of blowing bubbles as big as I can.

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A slightly different view.  Keep in mind the only lightsource I plan to use is the speedlight up top. 

I will try to post some test images soon.  4.5 hours to go and I haven’t started post processing.   Of course with this limited timeline I am hoping to do as little post work as possible. 

June 2014 – summer fun

My kids reminded at supper tonight that bubbles are super fun.  Yeah bubbles have been done a hundred times but hopefully not like this.  
I have decided to reuse an old backdrop and repurpose it as a lighting modifier.   My epic selfy (you can take a tour through the archives)  used a pegboard as backdrop and since I love making my own lighting modifiers I decided to reuse it to make a cover for a speedlight.

See below

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With this set up I should be able to freeze bubbles midair.  I hope to capture one popping but with no timing rig I think this is pretty unlikely. 

Wish me luck.  I’ll post a quick shot of the setup as soon as it is ready.  Only 6 hours to go.   This one is going to be tight.