Milking a Splash

You might have noticed I’ve been doing a fair amount of experimentation in photography lately. I’ve been playing about with ND filters and long exposures, and getting more involved in street photography. This is yet another post of experimentation, one that I’ll admit now didn’t work out as well as I was hoping, but well enough to share.

Last week I came across this tutorial for shooting ‘action food’, and immediately wanted to try it. The other day I found I had time to try setting up something similar to see what sort of results I could get. Instead of using a black surface I used a wooden tray (that I’ve used in the past) which I figured would add a rustic feel to the images. I also decided to use a bowl instead of a mug as in the tutorial, and this is one thing in hindsight I shouldn’t have changed. I chose to shoot at f/4 instead of f/10 too, and that also was a small mistake, as not as much was in focus as I was hoping in the final results.

I started by pouring milk into the bowl from a height.

1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 200, 24mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 200, 24mm

This shot, like all of the shots in this post, has been put through a detail enhancer filter to bring out the details and make the milk’s texture a bit easier to see.

I then tried dropping some cereal into the bowl. That didn’t work so well, and the images didn’t come out thanks in part to me shooting at f/4 and also to my poor timing. But I did end up with cereal in the bowl which looked a bit better.

1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 24mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 24mm

Not wanting to completely reset and waste more cereal with playing about, I decided to take a spoon and try to create some splashes in the bowl. This made for some interesting shots with some splashes of milk.

1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 24mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 24mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 24mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 24mm

As you can see I did at least succeed in making a bit of a mess.

1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 28mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 28mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 28mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 28mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 32mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 32mm

The shape of the water in the latter image is rely impressive. I should try a similar setup with paint.

Having made a bit of a mess (and gotten a couple of splashes on my lens in the process) I went back to the original brief and tried scooping up some cereal and dropping it into the bowl from a height.

1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 35mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 35mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 35mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 35mm

Still not getting the splashes I was hoping for, I decided to try something else and go for interesting colour. Unfortunately the only way I could think of doing this was by pouring some bright Fanta into the bowl, which looks kinda gross.

1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 35mm
1/2000sec, f/4, ISO 125, 35mm

After this I was left with a soggy and disgusting inedible mess to clear up, and not quite the results I was looking for. I need to set up something that will protect my camera from splashes whilst shooting so I can better get some big droplets of water flying through the air. I’ll also try using a mug and a smaller aperture to see if I can get some better results.

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2 Comments

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  1. I’ve had my share of failed experiments with my camera. I had to chuckle with yours though . . . maybe because I can relate. 🙂 Keep on experimenting.

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