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Photography Projects: How to Take Photos of Water Drops

Updated on June 17, 2017

Taking photographs of water drops is one of the most interesting subjects that you can capture. It doesn't matter how many you take, they are all different. The set up for the photo session is very easy. With a little time and patience, you will be able to capture these wonderful photos on your own.

Water Drop


The Equipment

The equipment needed for taking photographs of water drops is not too different from anything else. You will need a lens (I suggest telephoto, as it will allow you to keep your equipment a safe distance from the water), a flash with off-camera capabilities, a sync cord, and a tripod. You will also need the items to make the water drops. I use a couple of chairs, a curtain rod, a glass pan filled with water, a Ziploc bag, and some clothes pins.

The Setup

The setup is fairly simple, and is quite similar to taking smoke photographs. Set the chairs on top of a table or platform. Place the curtain rod on the back of the two chairs, with the Ziploc bag full of liquid put on the rod securely with clothes pins. Place the pan of water beneath the bag, and poke a small, pin sized hole in the bag. If the drip is not quite fast enough, gradually make the hole bigger.

Put your camera mounted on a tripod at an angle that will give you the desired photos. Set up the flash off-camera a little bit to the left or right of the photograph. Another tripod or a flash stand may be useful. Attach the sync cord. Determine where the drop is falling into the water, place a pen there, and focus on the pen. This will ensure that you water drop photos are in focus.

Taking the Photos

Taking the photos is the trickiest part. Make sure that there is enough color so that you can see the water drops. Timing the photographs is everything. Shutter speed doesn't much matter, although around 250 should be good. An aperture of 8 or larger should be used, so be prepared for a lot of flash light. Make sure that it is diffused as much as possible. For some neat effects, trying using more than one flash with one on slave mode, and using different colored gel filters. Timing is everything! As soon as you figure out the timing, you will be well on your way to taking water drop photos!


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  • s.wilson profile image

    s.wilson 6 years ago

    @ Calbincho

    That depends on the refresh rate of your flash. If it is able to shoot off a flash that quickly, it would be great. Otherwise, it may not work as well.

  • calvincho profile image

    calvincho 6 years ago from George Town

    i think continuous shoots might help to capture more possible outcome of shots.

  • s.wilson profile image

    s.wilson 6 years ago

    @Vinaya: Thanks for reading!

    @Ursula: It is never too late to get back into. Practice makes perfect! And experimentation leads to creativity and innovation!

  • profile image

    UrsulaRose 6 years ago

    I so should have stuck with my Photography lessons whilst I had the chance at school, even if it was back in the days of the dinosaurs!

    Yet another amazing Hub Article you have written Scot.

  • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

    Vinaya Ghimire 6 years ago from Nepal

    I enjoy photographing rain. I have tried this. Your article was a nice read.