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Abstract Oil And Water Photography With Your Nikon Camera

Here are some top tips for abstract oil and water photography with Nikon kit.

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Abstract Oil And Water Photography With Your Nikon Camera: oil water red

Image by cattyal

As the weather gets worse and we head into winter, you may want to have a go at some more indoor photography projects rather than heading out into the cold and wet.

If this is the case, then photographing oil on water may provide the ideal subject for you to have a go at with your Nikon kit while the weather's bad. 

For this project, you'll need a glass dish, of around 5-7cm deep. ensure that it's washed and dried ideally with a lint free cloth, as any bits left over will show up on your images quite prevalently. 

You need something to support the dish on so that light can get to the bottom - two boxes or a pair of plant stands can be ideal. To create a nice, blurred colorful effect under the dish, you need to place something underneath it, about 25cm below. Anything colourful will work - a patterned shirt, coloured paper or even a well chosen page from a magazine. You could also try holding a CD under the dish and moving it around until a pleasing colour appears. 

You'll also need to light the colourful object - a bedside lamp will be ideal here. Shine it onto the background. 

Fill the bowl with a little water and then using either a dropper or if you're braver, pouring from the bottle, you can add oil blobs into the mix. To capture this effectively you'll need a tripod for your kit and a close focus lens will be a good idea. 

There are several ways to create various size oil drops in the dish. Drop a few blobs in, and watch what happens. The first drops will most likely spread quite large while later ones will retain a smaller shape. Stirring the mixture, or prodding it with a straw, will give you smaller droplets and bubbles, too. Patches of oil can also be moved across the surface by gently blowing through the straw. 

A tripod with a horizontal centre column can help you to get a nice angle over the dish, although this is still possible with a basic tripod by elongating one of the legs and tilting the ball head. 

Manually focussing your lens will enable you to hone in on the part of the image that you find the most interesting, and a shutter speed of around 1/30 sec should work well for capturing the images. This project can be done at any time of the day - the fact you're using a lamp means the light conditions won't vary much. 

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