A Delicate Waterdrop Umbrella

This is our entry in Lens-Artists Weekly Photo Challenge #46 – Delicate.

Colliding waterdrops create a delicate umbrella — here for a brief instant, then gone forever.   The photo below was created using our tripod-mounted Canon 50D and an ancient 100 mm macro lens in front of a paper background. The shutter was opened for two seconds while two drops of water were released into a martini glass filled with water. A flash, perpendicular to the camera, was triggered when the waterdrops collided. It illuminated the scene for 1/8000 of a second.  In the “umbrella” shape seen in the photo, the “shaft” is created as the first drop plunges into the water in the glass and then rebounds into the air. The “canopy” is created when the second drop collides with the rebounding first drop. (Technical note: It doesn’t really matter how long the shutter remains open as long as an image taken without the flash is black).

This photo was taken on March 29, 2017. Specs are:

Canon 50D, ISO 100, f/22, 2.0 sec, 100 mm.

 

Budapest Chain Bridge Light Trails

This is our entry in Dutch goes the Photo!’s Tuesday Photo Challenge – Night.

Following a few hours of after-sunset photography atop Buda Castle Hill and Gellért Hill in Budapest, Hungary,  we set up tripods at the Pest end of Chain Bridge to capture light trails.  There is an island between the inbound and outbound lanes of traffic that is safe for pedestrians. To create the trails in the photo, a series of eight 30 second exposures was stacked in Photoshop layers, aligned, and merged into a single image using the lighten blending mode.

An interesting phenomenon that occurs when you have a good spot is that it attracts other photographers. After a few minutes here, several other people with cameras popped up.  They weren’t using tripods so they can’t have been taking this shot.

Freedom of Expression at the Palais de Tokyo

This is our entry in iScriblr’s FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION” Challenge! PHOTOGRAPH!.

A very popular interactive exhibit in the Palais de Tokyo in Paris is a set of white backlit screens. Visitors pose behind the screens for the enjoyment of spectators on the other side.   We spent quite a few minutes here photographing displays of uninhibited freedom of expression.

After a few minutes, it became obvious that the camera, a Canon EOS Rebel SL2 (known in Europe as a Canon 200D), was also exhibiting its freedom of expression. The screens were white, the backlights were white, and the images seen by the human eye were black figures on a white background.  The backgrounds captured by the camera were shades of blue, yellow, green, purple and orange. Not white. The images captured by our other camera, a Fuji X100T, were black figures on a white background, as were the images captured on the smart phones of other spectators near us.

When we have more time, we will try to figure out why the Canon decided to express its artsy side at that time and place: it has not repeated that behavior since.  Was it due to the screen material? The camera sensor?  If anyone else has experienced this false color artifact, or knows why it happens, we would really like to know.

This photo was taken on April 10, 2019. Specs are:

Canon 200D, ISO 6400, f/3.5, 1/250 sec, 22 mm.

The Budapest Eye

We have always been fascinated by Ferris wheels, so it is no surprise that we admired (and photographed) the Budapest Eye from many angles before (and after) we rode it.  The Budapest Eye — also known as the Sziget Eye — towers 65 meters high over Erzsébet Square.  Only St. Stephen’s Basilica (and the Budapest Parliament Building) are taller at 96 meters.

The first photo was taken from Gellért Hill on the evening we arrived in Budapest.  Saint Stephen’s Basilica is the imposing building behind it.  We had hiked partway down from the 140 meter peak of Gellért Hill, which rises above the Danube River. The 25 second exposure captures the rotation of the wheel.

The second photo was taken as we stood in line for our ride just after sunset. At 2700 Hungarian Forint (HUF) per ride, slightly more than $9 USD, for a minimum of three rotations or 8 – 10 minutes, it is a pricey thrill, but worth it.  Calculating from time stamps on our photos, we rode for at least 15 minutes.

The third photo was taken from directly beneath the arc of 42 cabins on the wheel.  Each cabin is sized for four to six people.

This post is our entry in nancy merrill photography’s A Photo a Week Challenge: Three of a Kind and Dutch goes the Photo!’s Tuesday Photo Challenge – Wheel.

The 19th Century Military Technology of the Lajta Monitor

This is our entry in Dutch goes the Photo!’s Tuesday Photo Challenge — Technology.

When we were in Budapest this April, we took a one hour tourist cruise on the Danube to help us locate the major attractions. As we were passing the Parliament building, our jaws dropped when we saw a ship that is known to every student of the American Civil War — a monitor. When they were built, monitors were the most technologically advanced ships ever seen. They were constructed of metal rather than wood, sailed low in the water to expose a minimal target, and had a rotating turret that allowed the guns to be aimed without turning the ship.

A few days later, we toured the ship — the SMS Leitha (or Lajta Monitor) — on a rather cold and rainy day.  The Leitha is closely based on the 1861 design of the USS Monitor and was in service as a warship from 1871 to 1921. After that, the guns were removed and it was used to haul gravel.  The ship was rediscovered more that 80 years later and restored to its 1871 configuration. After the 19th century, monitors saw action in World Wars I and II and ships derived from the design were even used in Vietnam. It was pretty stunning to learn how advanced monitor ships were and how long they were in service. It was fascinating to explore a ship so close to one of the most famous ships in the Civil War (the Huntley and the CSS Virginia would be the others).

Die Mimik der Téthys

This is our entry in Dutch goes the Photo!’s Tuesday Photo Challenge – Connections.

Die Mimik der Téthys, 2019 (the facial expressions of the Téthys) is the creation of Julius Von Bismarck that is displayed in the Palais de Tokyo in Paris, France.  Téthys was the sea goddess of Greek mythology.

Die_Mimik_der_Téthys_2019_2859

According to a sign accompanying the exhibit,

The artist picked up a disused buoy just off the French coasts, a form of sign-posting used to facilitate navigation and warn boats of any dangers. Today suspended at the Palais de Tokyo, [it] reproduces in real time, thanks to a complex network of motors and cables, the movement of the buoy that has replaced it.

Because of the data connections between the exhibited buoy and the real buoy, we could “watch” the movements of the real buoy as it was being tossed on the Atlantic Ocean hundreds of miles away.

Man with a Beard — Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: View From the Side

This is our second entry in Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: View From the Side.

While visiting Paris this month, we took in the Palais de Tokyo — a modern art museum. (We had decided to avoid the “main” attractions because of the crowds but read that this was one of the better “second tier” museums. Paris has some pretty high tiers.)

Modern art museums with contemporary exhibits seem to have several that are interactive. One exhibit in the Palais de Tokyo has very large electronic screens that project the profiles of those who stand behind them. We spent several minutes looking at various screens while our fellow visitors posed. One of our favorite subjects was this man: