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Author Topic: Splash photography  (Read 1522 times)
Alan Matuka
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« on: March 21, 2013, 05:33:40 AM »
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Recently I did some milk and water splash shots, and encountered several ( expected ) problems.
First was flash duration. I used Multiblitz Profilux 400 to light glass and old Bowens monolite 800 for the background.
I new there would be some movement, since flash duration of those two units is around 1 / 500 sec, but didn't expect that much. I know that Speedlite has far shorter duration, but I'm not keen on them - light is too harsh and there is not enough modeling in the liquid.
Bron is known as THE light to use for splash shots, it's flash duration is 1/6000 sec ( so they claim ).
What is your experience, what lights do you use ?

Here are two shots, first one shows a lot of unwanted liquid movement.
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BartvanderWolf
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« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2013, 06:57:57 AM »
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Bron is known as THE light to use for splash shots, it's flash duration is 1/6000 sec ( so they claim ).
What is your experience, what lights do you use ?

Hi Alan,

I don't do this type of photography myself, but I know Frank Doorhof does jump photography, and he uses Elinchrom Rangers (Quadra and RX) with A heads. Using 2 of those heads will apparently get you in the 1/5000+ sec.  range, according to Frank.

Jumps and moving liquids are both subject to the same gravitational pull, so the only difference is that with liquids you use more magnification, which makes motion even more critical. But the flash duration will be what determines the amount of motion, so it seems that the Rangers are in the same, well, range...

For really high speed flash, you may still need smaller flash heads, like in the Speedlites, but when positioned close to the subject their size does increase proportionally, and you can add a diffuser for a softer effect with less light fall-off over distance.

Cheers,
Bart
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Ellis Vener
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« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2013, 11:41:43 AM »
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The "harsh" light quality and modeling of speedlites is down to you and the light modifiers you use, but Speedlites only have so much light they put out.  The Broncolor Scoro units are excellent bu then so are the Paul C. Buff, Inc Einstein 640 Monolights for about 1/20th the price or a Scoro set up.

http://www.robgalbraith.com/bins/multi_page.asp?cid=7-10053-10715

http://vimeo.com/11552592
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Ellis Vener
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Creating photographs for advertising, corporate and industrial clients since 1984.
SZRitter
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« Reply #3 on: March 21, 2013, 12:30:46 PM »
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Also note that the more power you put in, the longer the duration. If you power down to some of your lowest power settings, the duration should be slightly quicker.
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Ellis Vener
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« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2013, 01:32:21 PM »
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Also note that the more power you put in, the longer the duration. If you power down to some of your lowest power settings, the duration should be slightly quicker.
Not necessarily: with some flashes, even some high powered high end ones the lower e the energy level the longer the flash duration. You have to look for either IGBT controlled flashes ( most high end hot shoe mount flashes, the Einstein, and a few others) or the specific high end Profoto,Broncolor and Elinchrom systems designed for  short flash duration.

This dose a pretty good job of illustrating and explaining the difference between variable volatage flash and IGBT controlled flash : http://www.paulcbuff.com/sfe-flashduration.php

Broncolor and Profoto have their own proprietary systems for short duration flash

http://www.sportsshooter.com/news/1888

http://fstoppers.com/which-strobe-has-the-shortest-flash-duration-profoto-broncolor-or-einstein

http://photoartsmonthly.com/blog/2011/06/30/whats-up-with-flash-duration/
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Ellis Vener
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Creating photographs for advertising, corporate and industrial clients since 1984.
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« Reply #5 on: March 21, 2013, 02:03:21 PM »
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The other thing you can do is split the power between multiple heads/tubes. I used a pair of ProPhoto Bi-tube heads into a Pro-7a 2400 set the duration to about 1/4000 and because of the multi tubes, got an effective 1/16,000 duration. So, if you can split the output between 2 tubes, you halve the duration, between 4 tubes you quarter it.

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SZRitter
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« Reply #6 on: March 21, 2013, 03:00:00 PM »
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Not necessarily: with some flashes, even some high powered high end ones the lower e the energy level the longer the flash duration. You have to look for either IGBT controlled flashes ( most high end hot shoe mount flashes, the Einstein, and a few others) or the specific high end Profoto,Broncolor and Elinchrom systems designed for  short flash duration.

This dose a pretty good job of illustrating and explaining the difference between variable volatage flash and IGBT controlled flash : http://www.paulcbuff.com/sfe-flashduration.php

Broncolor and Profoto have their own proprietary systems for short duration flash

http://www.sportsshooter.com/news/1888

http://fstoppers.com/which-strobe-has-the-shortest-flash-duration-profoto-broncolor-or-einstein

http://photoartsmonthly.com/blog/2011/06/30/whats-up-with-flash-duration/

Darn it... Now I need to go look this up again. I shoot Ranger Quadras, but rarely use them for anything but still life and standard portraits. I guess the better way to say it was, check for your lights how to set them for shortest duration?
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ACH DIGITAL
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« Reply #7 on: March 21, 2013, 07:44:03 PM »
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Have a look at the new Paul C Buff Einstein,
The Einstein™ E640 Flash Unit
Two distinct operation modes are available from the rear panel: the Constant Color mode and the Action mode. In Constant Color mode, the emitted color temperature is held constant at 5600ºK (+/- 50ºK at any power setting or input voltage). The flash duration ranges from 1/540 second (t.1) at full power to 1/1700 second (t.1) at half power to 1/9,000 second (t.1) at the lowest power setting. In Action mode, the flash duration is minimized for maximum action stopping capability where absolute color consistency is secondary to motion freezing. At half power in Action mode, the flash duration is approximately 1/2000 second (t.1) and the color temperature is approximately 5750º K. In this mode, the color temperature rises as power is reduced.
They cost $500 each and are design for very short flash durations.
ACH
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Antonio Chagin
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kikashi
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« Reply #8 on: March 22, 2013, 03:50:57 AM »
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Jeff,

How the hell did you do that? And how much of the stuff were you "forced" to drink in the process?

Jeremy
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Alan Matuka
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« Reply #9 on: March 22, 2013, 05:45:33 AM »
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Thank you for the answers and advices :-)

@ BartvanderWolf  you're right, forces are similar, and magnification makes it more critical...

@ Ellis I'll do an experiment with Speedlite mounted in the small softbox, that may do the trick... or could just defuse the light, acetate does wanders...
Einstein lights are great alternative to Broncolor, have to check if they could be bought over here in Europe...

here is a link to a high speed ( or motion-freezing, as I prefer to call it ) photography, maybe it'll help someone...

http://www.photigy.com/mastering-splash-masterclass/

also, I've seen some guys working with continous light and shooting at 1 / 1000 sec, and it seems to work well enough ( up to the certain point )

thanks again, I will keep you posted about further results :-)
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francois
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« Reply #10 on: March 22, 2013, 05:54:34 AM »
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Jeff,

How the hell did you do that? And how much of the stuff were you "forced" to drink in the process?

Jeremy

IIRC, you can read the whole story in Jeff's book: The ultimate workshop. I don't remember anything about drinking, though!  Cheesy
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Francois
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« Reply #11 on: March 22, 2013, 11:27:48 AM »
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Jeff,

How the hell did you do that? And how much of the stuff were you "forced" to drink in the process?

I remember we didn't want to drink that stuff cause I did a blend of a bunch of cheap wine to try to get the right shoot through color. As to the way I did it, shot with a P45+ on a view camera with a beam tripper. The main splash was one shot and I took another splash to make the trailing end of the splash to make it look like the splash started and stopped-that of course never actually happen.
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Alan Matuka
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« Reply #12 on: March 22, 2013, 11:58:41 AM »
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I remember we didn't want to drink that stuff cause I did a blend of a bunch of cheap wine to try to get the right shoot through color. As to the way I did it, shot with a P45+ on a view camera with a beam tripper. The main splash was one shot and I took another splash to make the trailing end of the splash to make it look like the splash started and stopped-that of course never actually happen.

still, well done  Smiley

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