Karl Leck  


Blue Elmers into Water by Karl Leck

July 2021 - Blue Elmers into Water

About the Image(s)

Liquid Elmers glue was diluted with twice its volume of water with a drop of blue dye and loaded into a MJKZZ water drop unit. The controller was set for two successive drops into a small container filled to about 1" depth with water. In a dark room a Nikon Z7 camera with 105 mm Nikkor macro lens at f/22 was set for a shutter speed of 1.33 seconds during which time the water drop controller was activated to release two successive glue mixture drops and fire two Vela 1 high speed LED flash units after a delay of about 800 milliseconds determined by trial & error. The flash duration was set at 1/250,000 second to completely 'freeze' this very fast event. When the first drop hits the water it rebounds back as a column. When the second drop collides with the top of the column, it splashes out. In this instance the splash separated from the column as a beautiful ring. Each attempt at water drop photography yields a different result from endless possibilities in this world of microsecond phenomena governed by timing, surface tension, momentum, and viscosity.


This round’s discussion is now closed!
9 comments posted




Lauren Heerschap   Lauren Heerschap
Nicely done! You timed this so well to capture the ring and the drop pedestal. This is an interesting art that requires a dark room, equipment and more patience than I could possibly have to capture. Thank you for sharing how you did it. Kudos to your success!   Posted: 07/07/2021 13:11:34



Peter Newman   Peter Newman
Karl, Very well done. I am fascinated by water drops. It takes lots of practice to get the the image you are looking for. Thank you for sharing your image.   Posted: 07/09/2021 16:27:51



Lauren Heerschap   Lauren Heerschap
Hey for those of you interested in water drop photography, Sigma is doing an online presentation on 4/20 at 4pm PDT, it is an hour long. You have to get tickets ahead of time. Here is the link: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/water-drop-photography-online-wsigma-tickets-161168365921
  Posted: 07/14/2021 16:32:10



Freddie Kelvin   Freddie Kelvin
This is an astonishing image. It has a hypnotic effect that keeps my imagination going in all manner of directions.
It is a technical and spiritual masterpiece!!
  Posted: 07/19/2021 17:42:37



Judith Lesnaw   Judith Lesnaw
Wonderful!! I see life emerging from the primordial ooze. And I see the spirit of Edgerton. I see time. Frozen. I agree with Freddie, A MASTERPIECE!   Posted: 07/19/2021 19:19:05
Karl Leck   Karl Leck
Harold Edgerton, aka 'Papa Flash', is one of my photography heroes. I have two of his bullet prints. When I learned that a fellow in England was emulating the no longer available high speed flashes that Edgerton invented by using industrial LED, I ordered two. So far I've done water drops and exploding balloons. Bullets would require a lot more setup. But I've thought about it. I try to see the scene as the flash pops, but the exposure is too brief. The image is only viewable in replay which makes for some anticipation and a lot of frustration. Karl   Posted: 07/20/2021 06:40:38
Judith Lesnaw   Judith Lesnaw
AND much delight. I feel the spirit of Sally Mann's "Angel of Uncertainty" in viewing your image.   Posted: 07/20/2021 07:01:02



Sandra Irwin   Sandra Irwin
Way too complicated for a beginner like me to comment. I enjoyed the gooey gooey, though, and frankly, my first impression was that it was something real shot at a big aquarium.   Posted: 07/20/2021 21:56:59



Bev Caine   Bev Caine
(Groups 48 & 80)
What a lot of work but well worth it. Fabulous result. Too bad that when I got to about your third sentence I figured out that I'd never figure out how to create something quite as lovely as this.   Posted: 07/29/2021 10:51:54