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Challenge: Breaking New Ground (Basic Editing III)
Camera: Nikon D70
Lens: Sigma 105mm f/2.8 EX Macro for Nikon
Location: bedroom
Date: Jan 18, 2005
Aperture: 32
ISO: 400
Shutter: 30sec
Galleries: Macro, Studio
Date Uploaded: Jan 18, 2005

Tribute to the movie "Trainspotting"

The story behind this picture is lengthy; so I'll make a resume:
I entered the previous version of this shot for "Macro without bugs or flowers". It was scoring above 7.2 after 130 votes, which would have placed me in 2nd place. Unfortunately, my camera was set back by exactly 2 months, disqualifying me after 3 days into voting. I sent irrefutable proof - yes, I had actual proof - that my camera was set back by exactly 2 months to the minute. Unfortunately, DPC decided to stick to their policy and booted me. The old version may be seen here: Trainspotting II

Anyway, I decided to retake the shot for this challenge and glad that I did. With my new flash, I managed to illuminate the needle much more nicely. The draw back was that I had to remove all sources of ambient light around the needle or the yellow incandescent lighting overlapped with the flash ¡V VERY bad mix. This lack of ambient light, in turn, made my droplet completely flat, as it's missing rounded reflections. If I had a bit more time I would have arranged a better setup¡K but this picture was taken within the last deadline hour.


Used my D70 and Sigma 105mm macro. It has a good aperture for the star effect.

Went out of my way to get a 16 gauge needle: the bigger the needle, the bigger the drop. Took a plate of anodized (blackened) aluminum and drilled a hole about 1mm in diameter. The use of metal here is not necessary, but getting a hole that size in cardboard which is perfectly round is difficult. Any anomaly in the roundness shows up in the diffraction pattern (the star effect). The red glow comes from a red transparency that I placed over the metal plate.

Hooked up a 200W light bulb to my cheap Ikea lamp (rated 100W) and cover the lamp in aluminum. Then I made a small opening and aligned it with the metal plate to get an extremely bright pinhole source of light. The room remained relatively dark. Meanwhile, the 200W trapped in my lamp was heating up like mad! I had to wrap the light in paper towel an spray water on the whole thing about ten times between EACH picture. The room still smelt like burnt something.

Slight contrast enhacement, slight crop, slight sharpening.

Place: 4 out of 191
Avg (all users): 7.3438
Avg (commenters): 8.4000
Avg (participants): 6.8947
Avg (non-participants): 7.5097
Views since voting: 9907
Views during voting: 642
Votes: 352
Comments: 41
Favorites: 37 (view)

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06/05/2006 07:48:19 PM
Very COOL :)
05/13/2005 11:57:48 AM
This is an awesome photo.
01/27/2005 06:15:40 PM
Trainspotting. Great movie. I think you've captured the meaning quite well here.
01/27/2005 09:56:38 AM
i love the effect of the red light in the backround of the water. its very beuatiful.....sry bout the suix i accidently voted wrong, i wouldve voted an 8
01/26/2005 05:59:39 PM
Congratulations on your 4th placing with this fantastic image! Cleverly done to create an outstanding and impressive entry.
01/26/2005 08:52:20 AM
good job!
did u get my email with a few of my pics? let me know what you thought. Dagmara
01/26/2005 08:20:33 AM
well - done cograts on the finish.
nicely abstract.
01/26/2005 08:14:05 AM
Congratulations on your top 5 finish with this glittering gem of an image.
01/26/2005 05:35:43 AM
So close. My favorite of the bunch. Great work.
01/26/2005 03:37:10 AM
this is just stunning - good work
 Comments Made During the Challenge
01/25/2005 07:08:25 PM
cool. awesome macro and awesome effect. the image drew me in even without the title, but the title gives it even that much more cohesion. nicely done.
01/25/2005 04:39:32 AM
awesome image, love the lighting the hint of colour, and a really superb macro shot. Good luck!
01/24/2005 08:47:22 AM
what can I say, must have taken a good deal of time to create this image.10
01/23/2005 03:56:23 PM
01/22/2005 11:50:08 PM
this is such a great photo... 10
01/22/2005 07:45:05 PM
makes me think of a motorcycle ad for some reason. none in specific, just the general feel.
01/22/2005 07:06:03 PM
very clean, well executed shot. one of my ribbon picks.
01/22/2005 01:57:26 PM
VERY NICE. Congratulations. Well done.
What else can I say? Perfect focus and use of light for the subject and background. 10
01/22/2005 09:29:14 AM
Wow, this is a great idea w/complimenting title. 10
01/22/2005 04:22:20 AM
VERY cool shot. I love the great star you got out of the light source. I think the red glow is sweet against the black background. Great shot.
01/21/2005 10:01:03 PM
Amazing, I can't even fathom how you have accomplished something so outstanding!
01/21/2005 07:59:31 PM
Beautiful. Great macro work.
01/21/2005 11:58:29 AM
Quite an effect with a magical glow and a shinning star. It is this good combination that make a superb image.
01/21/2005 04:06:00 AM
Wish I knew what the heck this was :D Looks great though!
01/21/2005 01:46:40 AM
Great photo. How you got everything to line up with that flare being so perfect is quite suspicious, but maybe because it is beyond my knowledge of photography.
01/20/2005 10:53:22 PM
Excellent shot. Love the star of light.
01/20/2005 10:50:52 PM
Could have worked in the Movie challenge too. Expertly setup and great exposure. Will be tuning in later to hear your setup. Well done! 7
01/20/2005 08:25:58 PM
great macro, how was that light achieved? sparkle filter?
01/20/2005 08:03:45 PM
WOW ! Great shot. Nice use of lighting and color. Very crisp photo... an 8.
01/20/2005 06:16:06 PM
or A bridge too far? Intriguing shot.
01/20/2005 05:38:38 PM
very clever.....9
01/20/2005 01:25:10 AM
Fantastic! 10 You really accentuated the bevel. It hurts just looking at it.
01/19/2005 11:28:39 PM
Incredible, my favorite for this challenge. Congratulations.
01/19/2005 10:45:38 PM
don't know what's ground breaking, but this an awesome shot
01/19/2005 10:01:33 PM
Excellent composition. One of the best of the challenge. Great job. I wouldn't be surprised if this was a ribbon winner.
01/19/2005 08:15:30 PM
Nicely done!
01/19/2005 12:50:50 PM
Great shot. Composition spot on. The gray and the red works well together. Also the tiny aperture to produce the star effect is excellent. My blue ribbon pick.
01/19/2005 12:09:16 PM
This can't be real ! But I'm not a professional--not yet :)
What can I say ? It's perfect....
01/19/2005 02:26:33 AM
appears to be a cutout?
01/19/2005 01:54:34 AM
Far too cool! On my top ten list for sure. Good luck.
01/19/2005 01:06:03 AM
wow, i love this.

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