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PhotoPlus Expo – Redsnap

19th November 2013

High Speed Photography and More

As I was walking the aisles of the PhotoPlus Expo, an impressive photo caught my attention. It was a stop action of a glass bottle as it was shattering into hundreds of small pieces.

I was at the booth of a company named Triggertrap and they were showing off its Redsnap trigger. This device is unique in that you can use one of several sensors to trigger your camera or flash.

 

This is the Redsnap.

It accepts interchangeable sensors: laser, sound, infrared and lightning. It has three outputs to connect up to three cameras or flashes.

A sensor snap into the top of the unit. In this photo, the sound sensor is attached which was used to trigger to sample photo of the breaking bottle.


this photo from Triggertrap website

These are a pair of laser sensors. A laser sensor can trigger a camera when the laser beam is broken.

The Redsnap can also be set to take timelapse photographs.

 

The good news is that this looks like a promising product.

The bad news is that the Redsnap is not yet available. Triggertap has been raising money to build and distribute the Redsnap through a Kickstarter campaign. The goal was to raise £50,000 but they surprisingly raised £290,000.

I learned that the electronics and enclosures for the Redsnap are now being finalized. Small production batches will be available for Kickstarter contributors beginning in December and January and full production is scheduled to begin about May of next year.

Retail prices have yet to be determined. For more information go to the Triggertrap site.

It looks like an interesting accessory. I hope to review one when they become available.

Written by: Arnie Lee

 

 


 

 

 

 

A case against Stop Action

The usual “rule” for photography is to choose a shutter speed fast enough to eliminate the jitter or bluriness when the subject moves.

But sometimes ignoring the rule leads to more interesting photographs.

Here’s a few examples.


This little girl is practicing to become a major league baseball player. She’s winding up, ready to let ‘er rip.

By using a slower shutter speed, can’t you feel the breeze as she whips the ball towards the batter? Here the shutter speed was 1/50th second. Had I used a faster shutter speed, her left arm would have been frozen.

Here she’s enjoying the outdoor swingset. By itself, the photo shows no movement. But seeing her at the apogee (highest point) of the swing, doesn’t it conjure the feeling of motion? Recall that at the top of her swing, the velocity is zero – enabling you to use a relatively slow shutter speed to “capture” the motion.


Again we see a subject on a swingset but this time upside down. The relatively slow shutter speed of 1/100th second stops the action at the top of her swing.

In this case, the pose with her legs flailing about helps to introduce movement. And see how her hair is flying thereby adding to the feeling of action in the image.

A final example is this photo that lets me see the speed of the hoop and just about hear the air whirling around.

For this photo, I patiently waited for a moment when the young girl’s face was in a relatively fixed position while at the same time her arms were wildly gyrating within the hoop.

Then CLICK.


 
 
Use your camera’s shutter speed priority mode. Try setting the shutter speed to 1/100th of a second or slower – e.g. 1/25 or 1/50. If you use an even slower shutter speed, you may end up with blurry photos since you may not be able to hold the camera steady enough without introducing camera shake.

With just a little practice you can make your photos move.

 
 
Written by Arnie Lee
 
 
 


 
 
 

You don’t always have to stop the action

 

Sports and action photos are most often made with a higher shutter speed that “stops the action” and produces a tack-sharp image.

However by using a relatively slow shutter speed, you can emphasize the movement to create a totally different feel to the picture.



This “stop action” photo was captured using a relatively high shutter speed of 1/500th second. The young girl’s face is sharp.

By changing the shutter speed to 1/15th second, the blurred image creates a definite feeling of movement.

Here, the movement is mainly the girl’s arm striking the tree. Her face is still relatively sharp with a 1/30th second exposure.

Using a relatively slow shutter speed and panning (moving the camera to follow the action), produces blur except for the main subject. It takes a little practice to produce this effect.

 


Don’t hesitate to set your shutter speed to 1/30 or slower and let the action do the talking. Slow dancing can make for some interesting photos. Do you agree? Send me your comments.

 

 

Written by Arnie Lee