May 302016

Photo copyright Danny Kimball

I was inspired to take this image after watching my teacher Amy Horn take high-speed liquid shots at one of her seminars during the photography club at Northern Arizona University. Her images are amazing, especially the collision of two water droplets, so when it came up in class as an assignment, I was given the chance to create an image I had been interested in and as a class assignment. In this image I chose a background that had two very contrasting colors, first so I could see the difference since I am color blind and secondly because I wanted to simulate a drop of rain in the cool blue water at sunrise. I thought it amazing to think that during a rain shower this is happening every time a drop strikes the surface of a pond, lake, or stream, not thought of as something miraculous that is happening right in front of us.

I set this image up by cutting an “X” in a plastic sandwich bag, putting a rock climbing carabineer through the “X”, and hanging it from a tripod. Once I filled the bag with water I poked a hole in the bag with a thumbtack, giving me a drop about once every 10 seconds. I placed a black mug underneath and changed the background to get different moods.

For this image I shot with a Nikon d7100 using a 85mm macro lens. My ISO was at 100, which I realized after I could have varied while I was shooting to see the effect. My aperture was at f/3.8 and my shutter was at 1/200. The flash I used was a Yongnuo speedlite YN560 IV. Since I am not versed in post processing, yet, I only turned down the highlights. I thought that increasing or decreasing other settings took away too much from what the image originally was.

About the Photographer:

Let me introduce myself. My name is Daniel Kimball; I’m an Environmental Studies major, with a minor in biology, and certificate in wildlife management and ecology. I got into photography after seeing my brother’s work and being a competitive older brother decided I should try it out for myself, only later realizing that I have this creative side somewhere inside. I haven’t done too much when it comes to photography, but I have big plans for this summer. Not having to study for exams every week, will allow me to think solely on my images and planning them out. My first goal in photography is to capture an image that someone is willing to purchase, but my overall goal in nature photography is to inspire someone to go to a location where I have shot to witness the beauty for him or herself.

I typically enjoy taking shots of nature or of a subject within nature, but lately I’ve been enjoying each of our class assignments, whether its high-speed liquid, portraits, sunbursts, etc. I relish shooting nature most because beauty to me, rests most in nature. I enjoy this water droplet image since it is an element that occurs naturally, taken into an artificial setting, to then resemble a natural event. Some people that inspire me are Marc Adamus, Shane Knight, and pretty much anyone who can take beautiful astrophotography shots.

To read more about the Northern Arizona University “Behind the Image: Guest Blogger” project on our blog, please read the introduction at take a minute to leave your thoughts and constructive comments in the Comment section below – Danny would love to hear from you!