Tag Archives: experiment

Love black and white? Equally love HDR? Why not combine the two techniques? I have been playing with the idea for a while and I thought it was time to show the result. So basically you have two ways to approach this. (In this example I used a single shot HDR.) 1) Make a HDR of the original and then edit that to black and white 2) Make a black and white edit of the original(s) and turn that to HDR. In this example I went for option one. Just because that way I only had to produce one black and white edit instead of three. To be honest I can’t tell the differences in result between the two options but that is for a later moment to try out. See below for the results. (click on the images for the larger versions) I love the way how you get the detail back when you use HDR. Just compare the trees from the original edits with the HDR edit (both B&W and color version). Make sure you get your transformation to B&W correct. I personally am a lazy bastard and have a preset that I use in Silver Efex Pro from NikSoft. (one of my favorite tools) It also gives you the old fashion look by adding the original film grain (based on type of film). I also like to add extra drama to the image during the B&W transformation. Just play with contrast , levels, etc…

I started to experiment with eggs, and I must confess that it is a lot of fun to do. First I emptied the eggs with a syringe, cleaned them with warm water and let them dry. These empty shells were easy to manipulate. And I’m still making up my mind on what to do with them. Below you will find the first photos. More will follow when I have enough time to setup the mini studio.

After reading many articles on the internet I decided to buy an Infrared filter. Based on my camera I had two options; the expensive Hoya 072, or the cheaper Cokin P-007 (89B). Because I was not sure if I would like the whole IR thing I decided to go for the cheaper option only 1/8 of the price of a Hoya filter. (Hoya 77mm costs 200,- Euros, and the Cokin only 25,- Euros (if you already own the filter holder and adapter rings)). The first try outs were not as expected; it took me a day to figure out that I did not use the correct white balance. So the next day I took some outside shots and I am not really sure if I like the results. The problem is that I am not sure if I am doing something wrong. Or if the cheaper filter is not providing the expected result, or that maybe my camera body is not capable to shoot IR. According to articles found on the internet, I should be able to get some good results with my canon 300D body. So that should rule out that possibility. Unfortunately I have not been able to found any articles that describe the 300D in combination with the Cokin P-007 (89B) filter. I did found a Dutch website with examples of what I am trying to achive. Cklck here to go to this website and click on ‘infrarood’

After the first experiments with smoke I thought it would be a logic step to also try fire. So while I still had my product table setup I placed some matches in front of my lens and was thinking about how to light them and make sure that I would release the shutter on the exact right moment. First I thought it would be a good idea to use a heavy duty laser. I was able get my hands on a 100mW green laser. But unfortunately it was not powerful enough. It would make the wood of the matchstick smoke but it would not actually light the match. So I had to use a lighter. Light the match, remove my hand with lighter from the scene, and press the shutter. Light setup was the same as with the smoke experiment, with the only difference that I bounced the light from the opposite side where the flash head with barn doors and grid was located on a small piece of white paper. So hard light to make sure we will see the smoke and a small diffuser to make sure we get some softer light on the match. Make sure you set the right shutters speed to sync with your flash and try to get a small diaphragm (f/22) so you get enough depth of focus (DOF). And then…. Just as with the smoke pictures. Shoot as much as you can and waste a lot of matches… enter the gallery here [Canon 5d, 70mm, f/22, studiolight, Grid + Barndoors]

As planned I tried to shoot smoke pictures. I created a gallery were you will find the first results. I definitely will try more often, to see if I can get a better quality. For now I am satisfied with the result but I wish I would be able to get the smoke a bit clearer. So I’m still looking for some incense that produces lighter smoke. For those who do not know how to make this kind of pictures: Use an incense stick to create smoke (smells nice as well while you work), and put some hard light from one side. Use a snoot or barn doors to keep the light from hitting the background. Use black paper as a background and start shooting. Due to the fact you can’t control the smoke you just shoot (you’ve got to love digital) a lot of shots and hope you are lucky. Make sure you use a small lens opening (large f number i.e. f/22) And set you shutter to the sync speed of your flash (differs from 1/60s to 1/200s). When you are done, import your photo in Photoshop (or similar program) and inverse the image ([CTRL+I]. If you are happy with the result you are done. If not you can play with the curves [CTRL+M] which can help you to make the smoke more clear. The images on this page were also rotated 180 degrees. (smoke travels up in most cases) Enjoy when you will try for yourself. [shot with Canon 5D, 24-70mm f/22, studio light]