If you want to stop action with a fast moving object, you’ll need to have great timing and control of your gear to freeze time (or in this case, water) in its tracks.
There are a few methods of doing stop action photography and in the following video, Jay P. Morgan from The Slanted Lens shows us how to use the MIOPS Smart trigger in laser mode and a strobe with a short flash duration. In it, he freezes the water in the frame as it is hitting his model, who is sitting behind a white picket fence. Using liquids with your photography is a fun way to add a new element into your portraiture, such as the models wearing milk dresses that we’ve featured in the past.
The first part of the seven-and-a-half-minute video is about the setup in studio. The important part here is the kiddie pool placed under the model designed to catch as much of the water as possible. Do this or you’ll have lots of liquid to clean up later. Jay P. puts the laser pointer behind the model, outside of the frame so that it can communicate with the MIOPS trigger, placed behind the camera. When the water hits the laser, which is the trigger point, it sets off the strobes. Easy-peasy, right? Well, that part is. Now to get the water to cooperate…
Setting the trigger to delay at various intervals is where the experimentation comes in. They want the water to hit and splash the model just right, so they use a volleyball to test it first. Once they get the splash how they want it, Jay P. goes into breaking down his lighting setup.
Watch the video below to watch the complete setup and how the final shot was executed.