Shooting a Splash

I decided that I wanted to shoot water splashing on a model. So I do what I always do: Experiment and practice. 

I don’t think many photographers have a new concept or style they want to shoot and simply walk into the studio and capture it perfectly the first time. 

You take a look at a noted photographer like Sean Archer for example and you see that he has photographed dozens and dozens of models in the same spot in front of a window in his home to perfect his signature look. 

I had assisted at splash shoot for Don Hales and wanted to try it myself. So I invited one of the other residents at the studio, the talented Lexus, to help me out. Admittedly, we were working in a really tight time frame and we didn’t really have the tools we needed. The models were great, but our water throwing technique was lacking. The shots were more dribbles than splashes. 

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When one of the owners of the studio, Tony Clapp, mentioned he was doing a pool shoot at the studio I jumped at the opportunity. He’s an incredibly talented photographer and has done splash shoots more than a few times. 

This was the basic set up at the studio. We did some shots in this makeshift pool in natural light and then set up for splash. 

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For the splash shots, we had two lights with orange colored gels slightly behind the models and a blue gelled light directly above the camera. We didn’t have any large cups at the studio so we used dustpans to scoop and throw the water. 

Throwing water is not as easy as you might think and you never know what you’re going to get with any one picture. 

Every shoot is a learning experience and if I do this again, I’d turn down the power on the flash units to freeze the water a little better, but I think we got some great shots this time around.