All of my waterdrop photos are taken in a dark room, this isn’t totally necessary and you should be able to get away with a lamp illuminating the corner of the room that you are working in.
I have camera in bulb mode and keep the shutter open for roughly 1 second, in this time the water will drop the firing and the flash will freeze the motion of the water.
I generally use an aperture of F10-F14 and an ISO of 100, 200 or 400, these can be adjusted to give you the disired exposure; but it is important to to keep the flash output at 1/32 or lower, anything higher and you’ll run the risk of motion blur.
For setting the focus I release a drop of water and then place pen where the drop of water landed, I’ll then focus on the pen and switch the lens to manual focus.
Here is a typical setup that I use:
- Camera Control Box
- PC Sync Distribution Box
- 3 x youngou yn460 modified with PC Sync
- White plate filled with fluid
- Various Food Dye
- White Perspex for Flash Bounce
- Solenoid Valve
- Mariotte Siphon
I was really excited when all this was built and working, and the first thing that I did was to make an animation of a water drop collision. The following video consisted of 200 stills each still was from a different sequence and taken 1ms apart, I then edited them together in iMovie, this animation shows just how repeatble the setup is!!
In these photos I was playing around with food dye, lighting and different surfaces.
Thanks for staying with me to the end, I hope that you have enjoyed reading and have found some of this information useful. Please feel free to ask me any questions.