Waterdrop Reflections - critique requested

Discussion in 'Macro Photography' started by Overread, Dec 6, 2009.

  1. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Ok the other day it was dim, wet and dingy.... not a good day for photography at all. Infact a horrific day for anyone without advanced flash understanding/setup or lacking a 5DM2 Not a day to do photography....

    Yet photography I had to do on this day (composition practice thingy) however I also tried to get something that I have wanted to get for a while now, that of a reflection in a waterdrop. At first I tried using flash to light the scene, but even with the diffusion off my softbox I was still getting a very big rectagle highlight in the shot, not what I wanted to reflect. So I moved the flash further away and pushed the ISO right up (whilst also keeping a small aperture because macro has tiny depths of field, it was slightly windy, and I was handholding too)

    [​IMG]
    f8, ISO 1600, 1/100sec

    Soo nearly got there, but I would welcome advice from anyone who has done these shots in the field before. I know shooting on an overall brighter day would make a massive technical improvement to the shot, but what else can I do to help get that great reflection clear and sharp whilst also retaining good lighting. Further are there are any controling tips - I have seen people with clear defined content of the waterdrop - whilst mine was more a case of just focusing till I got "something" that looked in focus in the drop.
     
  2. wescobts

    wescobts TPF Noob!

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    I think you got it, I have not done anything like that, (Micro lens is in mail :mrgreen: :thumbup:) I certainly see the reflection.
     
  3. Shockey

    Shockey TPF Noob!

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    Well yeah you did get the refection, but the flash on the branch if very distracting as are the highlights around the drop.
    Did you take any with out the flash?
    Typically you can position the natural light and the back ground in such a way that the drop is the highlight of the photo without a bunch of distraction in the frame.
    Also obviously it makes a huge difference if you can get the drop bigger in the frame.
    Use the largest aperture where your lens is sharp to isolate the subject which is the drop.
    You can't get everything in the drop sharp because it acts like a prism, so try to get the center sharp as you did here.
    Using a tripod makes this type of shot much easier.
     
  4. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Many thanks both :)

    Sadly whilst handholding (And there being some wind) I didn't want my shutter speed going any slower - so whilst I tried a few without flash they came back way too dark to be of any use (think almost totally black ;) ). Thanks for the input on how the waterdrop works, I guess its going to be a lot of trial and error to get it to focus on a set subject/s in the scene so that it has a little more content than just reflection.
     
  5. Shockey

    Shockey TPF Noob!

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    Try shooting it in continuous focus in those conditions. Good luck.
     
  6. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I've actually found manual focus to be a slight be easier when doing work this close - otherwise I find that the AF can lock onto the wrong subject very easily (And using centre point only can be limiting to composition). Further its can easily lose its subject and then start hunting for it again - and that is never fun having to wait for it to swing back to focus (since macro lenses are not fast focusers at the best of times)
     

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