Drop of Water

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    Mr. Quebec

    Any critics?

    ISO :800
    Exposure : 1/3200
    Aperture : 11
    Took with a flash Speedlite 430EX.

    Ezra Morley

    Isn’t that a lot of fun? I really enjoy high speed water drop photography like that.

    One thing I would recommend would be to use your kit lens instead of your telephoto lens. The minimum focusing distance is much less for your kit lens, and the magnification is .03x higher. You can compare the 2 lenses here. (Look at the ‘close focus’ section, about half-way down the page.)
    As you can see in your own picture, the DOF is really limited at 250mm and you can’t get the whole thing in focus. If you back off to 55mm on your kit lens, and get closer, you’ll have to crop some, but you will be able to get the whole thing in focus.

    I’m curious, how did you manage to get a shutter speed of 1/3200 to sync with your flash? As far as I know, the flash sync speed for a Rebel T3 is 1/200! Oh, a thought just came to me, your flash must support HSS!

    I personally have never had a chance to use either an off-camera flash, or high speed sync. All I used was the built in flash at the lowest power, which gives an effective shutter speed of 1/8000 or maybe more. Most of the pictures were taken at f/14, and most of them weren’t even at 55mm, more like 47mm!

    This picture was one my earliest attempts, it is quite underexposed, but at the time, I was quite happy with the results.

    Shutter Speed: 1/60
    Aperture: F/13
    ISO speed: 400
    Focal length: 47mm

    Mr. Quebec

    I also really like that kind of photography. It can be so easy ”to freeze the moment!”
    Good tip about the kit lens, since the focusing distance of my 55/250 lens is a little more than 3 ft., I need to be quite zoomed on the drop. Also, ”column-type” drops are more easy the get in focus than ”crown-type” drops. Just a question, what do you mean by DOF?
    I really appreciate an external flash on photos like this one. Without flash, the picture will be very dark and very grainy too because of the high ISO needed. However, my flash need to be mounted on my camera. It doesn’t work as a slave flash because my T3 doesn’t have a wireless transmitter. So it does the job of my built-in flash, but much more powerful and can flash with a shutter speed faster than 1/200 and can be used as an indirect flash.

    • This reply was modified 51 years, 4 months ago by .
    Ezra Morley

    Oh, sorry, I should give definitions when using acronyms! DOF stands for ‘Depth of Field’. Here’s an article from lightstalking.com which does a good job of explaining it.

    As you can see, in my example picture from above, I only needed an ISO speed of 400 for my shots which were taken only with on-camera flash. I think the main reason is that I was much closer to the subject, which you can also accomplish with your kit lens.

    I also have run into the problem of not having a wireless transmitter. At one time I ordered an off-camera wired flash kit from Ebay (a PC sync cord and receiver, etc) but we were traveling internationally at the time, and it got lost in the mail. I contacted them, and they shipped it again, and again it got lost! So currently the only way I have of triggering my off-camera flash is via ‘optical slave’ I don’t know if your Canon 430 EX II has it or not, I can’t find any documentation to support the idea, so most likely not. My $70 Youngno flash does however, and it’s very handy to have!

    I would recommend setting the flash to Manual mode, and setting it around 1/64 power for starters, and just do some testing, see if you can get a proper exposure without having to use the HSS function. The flash will essentially act as the shutter, setting the exposure, so your camera’s shutter speed doesn’t really matter. Some of my “high speed” shots were taken with a shutter speed of 1/20!

    I have taken hundreds of water splashes, so I learned a lot of this by trial and error. Practice makes perfect!

    This is one of my favorites, it doesn’t actually show the drop, just the ‘aftermath’ I was experimenting with beet juice, hence the coloring. This resized version doesn’t do it justice, you can view it at higher resolution here.

    Again, this one was underexposed, so I had to brighten it up quite a bit. I wish I had known then what I now know!

    Shutter Speed: 1/20
    Aperture: f/14
    ISO Speed: 200

    Mr. Quebec

    What do you mean by ”optical slave”? I have noticed nothing special about my 430EX, which is the older version of the 430EXII.

    • This reply was modified 51 years, 4 months ago by .
    Ezra Morley

    To my knowledge, the only Canon flash with ‘optical slave’ is the 580 EX series.

    Basically, it has a sensor on the front which will detect a flash and in turn, it will fire, thereby essentially making “wireless flash”. I usually use the on-camera flash to trigger my speedlights via ‘optical slave’.

    So I set up my flashes however I want them, with the sensors pointing towards my camera. Then I pop up the camera flash, turn down the power all the way, and when I’m ready, I hit the shutter button. When the on-board flash fires, it triggers the speedlights instantaneously, voila, “wireless flash”!

    My biggest problem is that the on-board flash often illuminates the subject also, so I turn it down all the way, and try to block it as much as possible so that it doesn’t mess up my lighting setup. As long as the speedlights see a momentary ‘flash’ they will fire.

    Mr. Quebec

    I now understand with you were meaning.
    I tried any way I could think of to fire my 430EX with my on-camera flash without success, so I think it must be something Canon reserve for his high-class flashes…

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