Seeing and capturing
Every interest has its peaceful side. Photography is no different. For a change here is a video which delivers three minutes of peace and tranquillity. It is possibly something you can have a go at yourself…
Whats going on – can I do it?
What you see in the video is very simply drops of ink into water. The water is sometimes still and sometimes moving very gently. It is simple to do but infinitely complex in the outcomes. Anyone can do it.
There are literally hundreds of different inks on the market. Have a look at this…
A great set of varied colours. Can be used to create coloured water and for droplet mixes. Great for experimentation.
I have a range of colours I use for water work. You can also use food colourings. Basically the technique is like this…
- Set up a glass jug, vase or small tank (flat sided is best).
- Make sure it is very, very clean.
- Have a dry cloth available to wipe the glass dry if you spill.
- Use a remote flash or domestic lamp set to the side.
- Place a black or white card behind your glass vase.
- Mount your camera on something solid. A tripod is best.
- Set your camera to auto-white balance.
- Set the ISO to 100.
- Use Shutter Value [Sv, Tv etc.] as your shooting mode
- Use f11 as your setting to shoot right through the water.
You will need to have the light on from the side of the shot. An on-board flash will cause the ink to appear very flat with the light coming from the front. This will ruin the effect.
If you want added brightness from behind you can add a light shining onto the background card. This will lift the internal colours.
Then, as with everything in photography you will need to experiment with the light and conditions you are working with to get the best shots.
Your water should ideally be about six inches deep. Drop the ink into the water and start clicking your shutter button. You can do it quite a few times as the ink forms up the shots. Once you are satisfied there is no more shots to be had then replace the water and start again.
People spend literally years working with this sort of effect. It is not only great fun for everyone from beginners onward, it is also great art. There are many fine art photographers who work on this sort of image for a living. There is also endless amusement, beauty and some wonderful images. The technique works for both still photography and videography.
And now for your three minutes of peace and tranquility – enjoy!
Jacob + Katie Schwarz
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