High-Speed Photography: Capturing Motion


Lesson Info

Shoot: Dancer with Flour

Just 'cause it's so popular and so trending, and such a part of high speed photography, I thought we could just get some powder in there and bang, bang, like hit it in your hands, like, I don't know, LeBron James when he... But I think instead of... what's that? [Female Off Camera] The LeBron James ballet. Yeah, the LeBron James of ballet. But I think in order to really see this, it's almost like the glass I wanna backlight it a little bit. So maybe we turn off this? So maybe we turn off this, yep. And just look at it, and just look at it with one light. Let's give it a shot, excuse me. And I'm not sure how it's gonna go, are we gonna I don't think we're gonna toss it on her, as much as we're gonna try to... (clapping) Just do a little bit like this, yeah, that like just... Knocking it in your hands. And maybe you could just... what's that? Careful it's slippery. Oh yeah. Okay. So you're gonna be here into this edge light, and I think you can kiss it a little bit in fro...

m right over here. Do you wanna down in power a bit? Uh huh, naw we'll just, we'll just see what it looks like. Sure. Right on. Before you even do it can I just see where your hands are and everything, this one's off right now. Yep, could I just see where your hands are and everything. Yep, yep. (camera clicking) Great okay. Yep, that'll work. Right, was this light in play there? Yeah, this was on. Come a little bit more over here. Little bit high up, cool, right there, let's just, let me just check my exposure. (camera clicks) Beautiful. She might have to back up just about a foot and a half. So that she falls right in that light where her hands are. Okay, thanks Chris. Alright, let's see it, give me powder. I should here? Yeah, put it in your hands, like let's just hit it up, let's move it around, let's try to get some fluffy goodness. Wait one second, what was my last exposure Chris, 11? Yep. Okay, right on, ready when you... I would be generous with it. Okay. Yeah, not chintzy, yeah, be generous with the powder, yeah even more I think, but yeah. (laughing) Alright. Yeah, we're not gonna do this too many times. And just try not to look like, aggravated (laughs), about the powder, right, try to look like, I don't know, like you're a gymnast chalking up for the rope or something. Alright, ready when you are then. (camera clicking) Yeah. There we go. Beautiful. Alright, let's... I wasn't aware your hands, whoa! (laughs) Let's hit it again. Let me just see where your hands are gonna go, can you just like mime it left to right? Do you just want this? Yes, I just want that, yep. I just want to see your hands moving like that so I can frame it, and not crop it. Ready when you are, go. (camera clicking) Wow, it's not... can we try... Can we just try something that's like a magic spell in front of you so you're (claps), boom, like that, yeah. Oh yeah, I look like a baker now, okay. (laughs) Alright. Yep just a clap right in front of your face, try to keep it radiant and beautiful, right. And then we're just I don't know, give me mystical things with your hands. Go big with the powder. (camera beeps) Yeah. Alright, ready when you are, and just stare straight at me the whole time, don't even look at your hands. Yep, just strong with the face. This light can come a little bit more centered, come to me a little bit, walk to her a little bit. Out a little bit, back, let me just check one exposure. (camera clicks) Yeah. Nice. Okay. Let's just bring this hair around front, with it a little bit. I wanted to move it but I didn't want to have white hair. Okay, so just try to forget that there's this crazy powder all over you and... yep. Beautiful. Cord, cord. Oh thank you. Okay, ready when you are one, two, three, go. (cameral clicking) Yeah, actually clap in front of you. Okay. Yep, (laughs) So yep, ready when you are, one, two, three. (camera clicking) Yep. Great and can we, let's take it, clap (claps), and just instead of bringing your hands out of frame, clap and just bring 'em into here, right? Okay. Okay, ready when you are. One, two, three, go. (camera clicking) Yep, beautiful. That felt great. Oh nice, yep, let's zoom out on that a little bit Chris. Beautiful, the one before that. Cool, I think we just want to keep your chin down, we'll shoot this once more, keep your chin down, give me some, a little bit more seduction in the eyes. Yep. And let's get, can we get one person to kind of clap, before she does, like just (claps), back here, can we do that? Great. (laughing) Alright, totally messing up creative... love you gotta be outta frame, so I'm gonna have you go, and then she'll go, alright. So I just clap and... Yeah. So it'll be Dee and then Krista, go ahead Dee. No, you're not gettin' it. Like, can I show you again? Alright, watch me, generous here, right the claps happen here. Ah. Right. And you're coming out quick. It's gonna be easier if she comes in from the other side Clay. Oh yeah. She's gonna be able to exit the frame faster. Okay, come from that other side. (laughs) Alright, so we want it to come right into this area. Gotcha. Right, that means you're probably gonna clap it in, right about here. Clap in here. You're hands gonna be right where my finger is. Yes. Okay, cool, thanks. Alright, great, one, two, three, go. Go. (camera beeping and clicking) Did it come in, in the back? (laughing) I missed it. Oh, yes! [Female Off Camera] Yes! Oh! [Female Off Camera] Yes. No it's good. It's so good. Beautiful, it's like it's snowing. What's going on, is that the clarity? What's going on there, why does it look so crazy Chris? Just is a little sharp. Right, yeah it's a little bit sharpening? Yeah. Alright, beautiful, great, Krista. Thank you. Lovely. (applause) Great, I think you're released, I hope you got what you need, I hope we've fulfilled your needs, I hope you, you know, wow that agent. Any questions... So Clay, yeah, I've got a question for you, can you just sort of wrap this up, is this something that you do in your studio all the time? Yeah... Can you just give us a big picture on this to kind of wrap it up? Yeah, the big sort of picture, it's like when you're doing action, even a huge room gets very small, very quick. We saw that happening here. You know that's why I said, in a perfect world, I would shoot this on a rooftop, or somewhere where I had big, open sky, and I just wasn't going to get any obstacles in my way, or the background could've been like a better silhouette with a, maybe a bright color behind her. So, yeah, this sort of movement is not something I do all the time, I think that's why I'm struggling with it. But I'm just covering the idea of of how we can get flash duration to work for us. You know what I mean, this is not my, meilleur, or whatever you would like to say, but like, with enough perseverance, I think it's hard to make pictures sometimes in a time crunch. You know I'd probably need a couple of hours of time with her to just to kind of work this stuff out, and block it out. Look at the pictures a little bit, back and forth. I do think Jay did a great job, with directing her, and shooting a great picture there, so yeah, but look we got some baggers in there for sure. [Male Off Camera] Yeah and this is a good group of pictures. Yeah. Yeah, that's great, and talk a little bit about experimentation, and perseverance, 'cause that's how you got there with those shots. Yeah, and I think it's been a little bit of that, throughout the workshop, is just you know, things not working out, it's like that mantra, good, better, best, I will not rest 'til my good is better, and my better, best. It's like just staying with it, pushing through, allowing this process of shooting, you know, tethered in the studio, and seeing the results immediately. To allow that to be a part of cultivating, you know, a practice that makes each shot, you know... you're looking at it, you're having a little bit of feedback, it's getting better and better, and noodling with it, so... I think, you know, good pictures sometimes just don't appear for us, they just don't walk in front of us, we have to like, make them happen, and it involves, you know, sticking with it, and pushing through, and hitting some obstacles and persevering them, right?

The ability to freeze a moment of time can show power, emotion and detail. Learn how to utilize high speed flash duration to create powerful images in a fraction of a second. Through a variety of examples, Clay Patrick McBride will have you experimenting with your photography in a new way. He’ll explain:

  • High Speed Syncing techniques
  • T1 and T2 Flash Duration
  • How to capture the tiniest of details like water droplets or dust
  • Different trigger techniques depending on your unique setup



  • Watched it live, I thought it had lots of great info. Hoping to buy it soon.
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