Stay-at-home dad and photographer Shawn Knol (Photoelasticity on Reddit) has a special talent. He takes some completely eye-catching, macro images of water drops. Knol’s close-up photos are lively, vivid, and extremely detailed, revealing every minute feature of the water’s luminous surface in addition to a myriad of reflections.
Knol indulges this hobby when he is not busy watching the children or his pet cat. To shoot these amazing shots, Knol uses two lenses, a flash unit, extension tubes, as well as a makeshift diffuser. He ably shows that the priciest equipment and studio gear are not a requisite for great images.
His resourcefulness extends to using common household items like tulle, glitter, or even T-shirts for richly colored backdrops. All it takes is a creative disposition and lots of imagination. “My camera is a canon T1i. My lenses are a canon 50mm 1.4, a sigma 10-20mm, and a sigma 105mm 2.8 macro,” shared Knol on his Flickr page.
The Phoenix Arizona native takes pleasure in toying around with texture and color in his striking photos. He is most interested in water as a main subject. Whether the liquid presents itself as rainbow drops, pellets of water on spider webs, or as iridescent colors reflected off them, Knol will find a way to photograph it. The main element in each work is the beauty of each tiny particle.
A water droplet is a tiny column of liquid, bounded totally or almost completely by free surfaces. A water drop may form when liquid builds up at the lower end of a tube or other surface, creating a hanging drop known as a pendant drop. Drops can also be produced by the condensation of a vapor or by atomization of a bigger mass of liquid.
An easy manner to produce a water drop is to permit liquid to flow gradually from the lower part of a vertical tube of small diameter. The exterior tension of the water causes the liquid to hang from the tube, producing a pendant. When the droplet gets bigger than a particular size it detaches itself.