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Capturing High Speed Plate Crashes

Lesson 15 from: Capturing Food in Motion

Steve Hansen

Capturing High Speed Plate Crashes

Lesson 15 from: Capturing Food in Motion

Steve Hansen

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Lesson Info

15. Capturing High Speed Plate Crashes

Summary (Generated from Transcript)

The topic of this lesson is capturing high speed plate crashes and how to achieve dramatic and realistic photographs of breaking plates.


  1. How should the plate be dropped to achieve the desired effect?

    The plate should be dropped with force and hit perfectly flat to avoid any angle to it.

  2. Can the photograph be taken from above the plate?

    Yes, because compositing will only focus on the plate, anything above it is irrelevant.

  3. What is the benefit of breaking a plate at an angle?

    Breaking a plate at an angle can create a more dramatic shattering effect.

  4. What can be done with the undamaged tile after the plate is shattered?

    The undamaged tile can be blended in as a healing after the fact to create a more realistic image.

  5. How many tries should be done to get the best photograph?

    About 10 tries should be done and the best one can be selected.

  6. Can cracks from other plates be added to the shattered plate?

    Yes, cracks from other plates can be added by aligning them properly. However, it is important not to add too much as only one plate should be shown if only one was dropped.

Lesson Info

Capturing High Speed Plate Crashes

So are you guys ready to break stuff? All right, let's clean-- Do we have a clean squeegee? No, but this I'm okay just taking a towel. You do not wanna move-- no, I'm taking a paper towel. I want it to absorb some of the-- we can't move the bottom at all. I don't think, well, that's not a big deal. Okay, that's good. We'll get this totally cleaned. Jack, do you wanna air it, Windex will be good too, if we have it. Thank you. All right, let's do that. I don't want any streakiness. All right, we're good, we're ready to go. (laughs) The moment of truth. 10 tries. Am I? Or you're breaking? I thought you wanted me-- Yeah, I do, I do want you to break (laughs). Let me see what the, we want to hit perfectly flat. We don't want any angle to it. The thing is, when you drop it like this, one finger's gonna let go sooner than the other. So I think it's better if you actually just force it with some force and just make sure, because your hands can be in the scene. So you don't have to do i...

t from this high. That's the thing about compositing is we're just gonna worry about the plate so anything above it is irrelevant. So you can be up here and then, like this is good because I need some time to react to what you're doing. Give it a little punch but don't be, if you go too crazy, it'll tilt. What about 10 tries? That wasn't enough last time (laughs). So one, two, three, and then go. One, two, three, go. (laughing) For real? How does that even happen? Wow. I'm totally speechless. I'm outta here. I'll see you guys later. (laughing) I'm gonna go explore our options because I was like, those are really thick plates. Let's see what these are about. Can you break one of these? These are cheap too, but can you break one of these? Wait a minute, what does that look like? Take a picture. Take a picture of that. We're leavin' that. We're keepin' it. That's awesome. That looks like you shattered the countertop. No that's better. I like that. Does everyone like that? No, am I crazy? It's more dramatic, right? Can you also actually show us the plate breaking too? Oh, we'll get to that. I'm so angry at this plate right now, it's going-- (laughing) The thing is, you're supposed to buy cheap plates but they're making cheap plates really nicely these days. This is heavy, this is not as heavy. I want to get a feel for, we might as well take a shot so you can do this. I think we need to leave it like that because I love the fact that that broke. You can't be like, put off about that stuff because that just shows the power of what's happening. Although that would never happen on a floor. But anyways let's go with it. Actually, the reason that broke is 'cause it did hit flat. And there was a lot of structural power. You know how a dome has a lot of structural power? When it comes at an angle, it'll force it to shatter a little bit. So I would not be afraid, I think, at this point to-- To hit it at an angle? Somewhat, but really-- Do you wanna push this back together because it'll probably spread out again when we hit it? Yeah, you're welcome to, just don't cut yourself. And also the wood underneath it gives a little bit. So maybe if we just get a harder surface. But we are time sensitive so we really gotta go with it. Actually I like that even better, that's a cool shot. So I'll take that and just really go after it. Do not be afraid to just throw that. And I'm gonna get safety goggles on. All of you do the same thing. They're both right there. Let's get our safety goggles of science on. And so this time, we're doing real photography this time. We're not just messin' around. You guys will be fine, I'm sure, over there. I'll block you. So I'm centered. Okay, you ready? One, two, three, go. Did we survive? What did we do? That is an angry toss. (laughing) Maybe a little much? That was like, I will not be dominated by my props! You have glass all on you. That's angry, but that's too angry, Jack. The thing is, when you see a plate that's in pre-shatter, that's Photoshop, usually. But we're tryin' to do this for real. So I at least wanna have one of the 10 plates. And the thing is, when we have something like this, we can blend in the actual tile that was undamaged after the fact as a healing. That's not a problem. But I do want the tile, the tile is at least offering, especially now that it's shattered and it's even stronger. This will actually act as a good base to shatter things on. So we're just gonna do it 10 more times and we'll take the best one. How's that sound? Anybody get hit by anything? So we're gonna go back and try to shatter the original plates? Correct. And now that's broken, it's lost all of its... Do like you did before, same amount, same amount. One, two, three, go. That's not bad. Keep going. Let's get some heavy-duty gloves. I'm gonna get you a nice pair of gloves. There you go. I don't know that these are gonna do much. (laughing) You know what you're doin', you're a pro. You don't have to use those. I give Jack a hard time sometimes, I don't know if you've seen that (laughs). One, two, three, go. Go again. That was just falling, right? Too soon? Yeah. That died for nothing, Jack. It's really cathartic. Although that surface is getting awesome right now. One, two, three, go. That's a good one, right? Jack, I owe you for this. We're gettin' beers after this. I can no longer reassemble this. Don't even bother with it. (laughing) It's gonna be sand by the time we're done with it. One, two, three, go. You're goin' old school on that one. That's actually a really cool photo. Actually, my goggles are foggin' up so-- One, two, three, go. Just freak out on it, Jack. One, two, three, go. (laughing) We're gonna start holding pieces around and taking shots. I'm actually gonna do it with my finger so we could just go after it. Let's take that shot that we really liked. There was one that was good and let's see what we can add to it. Nothing hit the lens, nothing hit you guys, right? That one's cool but it's not right. That one's interesting. That one's actually cool. That might be, maybe we don't have the plate break or maybe, if I had time to show you guys this, I could actually bring cracks that happen on other plates into this plate. And you just have to realign where they are. That one's interesting. That's the one you guys liked, right? What was your favorite? That one doesn't have enough plate. That one has too much plate. Ooh, that one's good. Let's keep that one. And then we'll take a piece, let's flip through real quick. I wanna get one side piece. Go back, actually, you can't have more than one, take that one because there's pieces over here. I'll add that later. So this was the other plate. Yeah, let's do that one. And then the first one we were lookin' at. That one, yeah, we'll just add those two in. You don't wanna add too much 'cause you can't have more than one plate, if you only drop one plate. So add in at your own risk.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with RSVP

Food In Motion Lighting Setups

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Capturing Food In Motion Gear List

Ratings and Reviews


This course is so fun to watch! I love how hands-on this course is even while watching it 3000 miles away on the other side of the country. I love how Steve Hansen is like a mad scientist just throwing food everywhere just to capture the "right moment". It's great to watch a professional at work especially the behind-the-scenes that we normally won't ever know just by look at the final product. It's amazing how much work goes into this and actually gets me excited to try my hands on capturing food in motion as well - first need to find a place that allows me to get it messy :D I do prefer this type of course set up than the lecture-style some of the other courses are.

Christy cwood56

This course will NOT disappoint! So much quality info that can really help a photographer move to the next level. To see the actual shoots with food flying everywhere and how to capture all of it and turn it into an incredibly stunning image is worth every penny of the price tag. To spend an afternoon with Steve on a one to one basis would cost more than most of us could afford but that is exactly what this class offers! We see into the mind of an incredible artist and his creative process. This class has been invaluable to my personal education as a photographer. There is so much here and I will continually come back to it again and again to learn and refine my techniques and images. You opened up a world of possibilities to me with this class! Thanks Steve!!!

a Creativelive Student

I attended this class in person and I found it to be wonderful. Steve is awesome at what he does and he is great at explaining what he is doing and why he is doing it. This course will lay out all the steps needed to help you create awesome splash and crash photography. I highly recommend it.

Student Work