Schnelle Fotos
August 6, 2005 2:51 PM   Subscribe

Welcome to my Highspeed Photography Site. Not just cool photos, but insightful details of the technique required to take them. (some pages in german, most in english). via digg
posted by furtive (27 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
posted by Elpoca at 3:08 PM on August 6, 2005

some pages in german ...

Actually, some pages are in dutch.
posted by o0o0o at 4:03 PM on August 6, 2005

[this is good.]
posted by Kwantsar at 5:06 PM on August 6, 2005

Thanks for posting this. It's cool.
posted by smackfu at 5:52 PM on August 6, 2005

I don't get this one. He's dropping colored water on thread run between two needles (I think), but why?
posted by smackfu at 6:03 PM on August 6, 2005

I wondered too. Either the thread is there to give you an idea of the scale, or he was actually trying to see the droplet deform as it hit the thread. Though if that was the case you would think he would have posted those images too.

I think a lot of this involves trying various things and seeing what looks neat and what doesn't. Since our eyes don't see any of this (at that speed at least) we have no idea how these everyday things look when frozen in time, so you have to experiment.
posted by Rhomboid at 6:23 PM on August 6, 2005

great. if I can combine these photographic methods with my penchant for throwing poor animals around my living room perhaps I can make a homepage of my own. oh wait, that was posted already 2 links before.
posted by nervousfritz at 6:29 PM on August 6, 2005

In my next set of photos, I've placed a live Pomeranian, or dog of that ilk, into my PVC potato-gun...
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 6:51 PM on August 6, 2005

Awesome fpp.
posted by vagus at 8:00 PM on August 6, 2005

I love this so much I want to have sex with it. Great post!!
posted by jonson at 8:22 PM on August 6, 2005

posted by ColdChef at 8:40 PM on August 6, 2005

That color scheme looks so familiar...
posted by brownpau at 8:46 PM on August 6, 2005

Those waterfigures are fantastic. Great post.
posted by painquale at 8:47 PM on August 6, 2005

A friend of mine (friendship currently fallow), an atmospheric physicist who studied lightning and lightning rods with triggered lightning at Langmuir, is an amateur photographer specializing in high-speed photographs. He took quite a few high-speed photos of triggered-lightning and other lightning that you can still find here and there on the net. (He needs to get a page back up somewhere--I'll email him.)

Anyway, he set up an apparatus that took high-speed photos of controlled "milk" drops falling into a filled container. He used a titration control that very much regularized the drops, a controlled strobe, infrared beam for synch, electronics for controls. He got some stunning black-and-white photos--I should have requested a print, but I didn't. One thing that was really neat, though, was that you could effectively get stop-motion just by being in the darkened room with the strobe and the controlled flow. The impacts and their effects were pretty regular, so up to the point where they became chaotic you could sit there and look at what your perception saw as a moment in time as the droplet hit the surface. Also, he could vary the timing so that it seemed as if we were watching the drop fall in slow-motion. It was very cool.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 9:50 PM on August 6, 2005

High speed photography is a great object lesson in the often-confused fact that when using a flash, it's the flash duration, not your exposure time, dictates the exposure. More information here, for those bitten by the bug.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 11:24 PM on August 6, 2005

Terrific post!
posted by sellout at 11:37 PM on August 6, 2005

Harold Edgerton has long been one of my heroes.
posted by yoga at 6:35 AM on August 7, 2005

Too cool, I'm tempted to try some of these myself. A fantastic post!
posted by fenriq at 9:30 AM on August 7, 2005

Buried in yoga's link is an interesting fact few are aware of. Doc Edgerton's pioneering flash photography was developed for the perfection of nuclear bomb triggering events.
posted by paleocon at 10:30 AM on August 7, 2005

I did something along these lines for a science project when I was 16. It's actually surprisingly easy: you need a strobe / flash, an SLR and a circuit which trips the flash off - I used a piece of foil that was broken by the bullet. Other than that, I just did everything in dark, meaning the flash was effectively the shutter. I did use an air rifle but that's because in the UK it is very difficult for 16 year olds to get real guns. Still, great fun. I got an "A" even though I have a sneaking suspicion I was given it because the photos looked cool rather than there being all that much scientific merit in what I was doing.
posted by rhymer at 11:39 AM on August 7, 2005

About the thread that is used in some of those pictures: although I do understand the Dutch itself, I don't understand what he's trying to say about it. It has something to do with the timing. He was not aiming for pictures of the drop hitting the thread, as was suggested above.

A rough translation of some of the text above the blue drop: "Between the pipette and the thread a light curtain has been established. When the drop breaks through this light curtain, a signal is sent to a timer module, which activates the flash after a predefined amount of time. "
posted by Narnia at 12:35 PM on August 7, 2005

This one is pretty cool as well.

Nice post!
posted by Narnia at 12:45 PM on August 7, 2005

Narnia: the problem with high-speed photography is timing. Your flashes are firing for incredibly shot periods of time--when I was dabbling around, I was using 1/32,000 sec. timings--thus your margain for error is miniscule. A tenth of a second too late or too early, and you get nothing.

The "light curtain" is basically a trigger: while the light hits a sensor, the circuit is complete. Once something passes in front of it, the circuit is broken, triggering the shutter. The most common variation is a sound trigger. When (say) a bullet is fired, you can calculate the distance between the microphone and the gun, then use the speed of sound and the muzzle velocity of the bullet to calculate how much time should elapse before triggering the shutter. There are slight variations in the grain counts of bullets, so the velocity can be a bit variable... in such cases, a little luck and a lot of tenacity can do wonders.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 4:01 PM on August 7, 2005

Damn. That is far out and so cool. I wish I could do this, I would be destroying many things in the name of art.
posted by bdave at 6:57 PM on August 7, 2005

Civil_Disobedient: thanks for your (clear) explanation, I get it now!
posted by Narnia at 3:21 AM on August 8, 2005

This is why I come to MetaFilter. Fascinating post, furtive!
posted by DakotaPaul at 11:00 AM on August 8, 2005

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