High Speed water balloon photography


No longer a newbie, moving up!
Dec 25, 2011
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South Africa
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Hey everybody,

I have recently just stumbled upon the wonderful world of high speed water balloon photgraphy.
I am planning to try this technique out over this weekend. I have done quite a substantial bit of reading up on the topic,
and i was just wondering if anyone here jas tried this technique before and has some handy hints and or tips to share? :D

I am also very curious if anyone has found a way to pop the balloon with a needle, without it being seen in the photograph ( i dont have any form of air rifle like weapon to fire at the balloon and thus will need to use a needle like object)
Any suggestions here?

Also if anyone has any examples of their experiments in this field, it would be welcomed with open arms :D

Thanks in advance

P.S I have a nikon d90, tripod, and an sb-600 speedlight in case that helps with some advice
How do you plan to sync the bursting of the balloon to the camera shutter and flash?

What flash duration (power level) are you planning on using?

Approximate flash duration for the SB-600 (page 88 of the user's manual):

1/900 sec. at M1/1 (full) output
1/1600 sec. at M1/2 output
1/3400 sec. at M1/4 output
1/6600 sec. at M1/8 output
1/11100 sec. at M1/16 output
1/20000 sec. at M1/32 output
1/25000 sec. at M1/64 output
I have had a quick try one night, might spend some real time on it at a later date

These were shot with studio flash, flash duration not quite fast enough


You could take 2 shots, one shot without the needle and use photoshop to put the 2 photo together and erase the needle...
You could try to hide the needle behind the balloon.

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