Unusual techniques


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Hi guys,

I'm not getting much shooting done at the moment but have managed to get in a bit of location scouting and reading of magazines and websites. I'm up for trying a few new games. First thing to mention - I don't like PP games because I'm no good at them and they are always described in Photoshop. I use Aperture (badly).

One that drew my attention was creating light trails of flying sparks by setting fire to steel wool and spinning it in a whisk on a wire. Sounds great. I can see the shot I want already. I've also spied a street lighting feature under a motorway that I hope will provide me with great band portraits.

I'm going to borrow a charming assistant to help me practice before I bring in an actual subject. But I was thinking - do you have any odd techniques or favourite games? Fill flash stuff at night on 30s exposures? Glowsticks or sparklers?

Do share.
One of these days I was going to try

- long exposure on a clear night of the stars.. Need to read up on it. The one where the foreground is perfectly sharp and the stars have the blurred semi to full circular look around the foreground.
- that multi shot 5plus frames per second and then photo merge to get that smooth silky look of the water while everything else is perfect sharp. - probably get to this one before the other :)



Hall of Famer
IR filter and long exposures, then walking in and out of my photos briefly to create apparitions. Also like to give my cameras a spin in flower gardens to get pinwheels of color. Long exposures on fireworks are fun.. and there's a slew of things I want to still experiment with. We'll see if I am more ambitious this year. Last year was a bit rough.

Lawrence A.

Hall of Famer
New Mexico
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Not really unusual, but a burst of the strobe to stop action at the beginning of a long exposure that lets the action blur through the rest of the time is sometimes fun and effective.


Southern California
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Gary Ayala
There's Dragging the shutter:


Flash w/slow shutter speed and a quick twist when one releases the shutter


Cheap Zoom Tricks:


Slow Shutter and messing with the zoom while OOF


Slow shutter and messing with the zoom while in-focus

And there are always challenges which will also develop your photo skills, like shooting under the Rule o' Thumb (how low can you go?)

About three stops under the rule

Low Light - Can you see the final image prior to releasing the shutter?




Once a week shoot:

1) only with a tripod;
2) at only one focal length;
3) only macros;
4) a sporting event:
4) only B&W; and
5) only in manual.


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