Category Archives: winter landscapes

Frozen Soap Bubbles

What do you do when you want to take pictures but the temps are below zero and you want to stay close to home?  Try this fun creative winter photo project.  If you search the net, you will find many different recipes to make soap bubbles that freeze into beautiful creative objects.

Frozen Soap Bubble Recipe

A recipe that I used to start my recipe is located here.

I substituted glycerine for corn syrup since I had glycerine and had no future need for corn syrup.  I did experiment with brown and white sugar and each one created an interesting look.

My first mixture didn’t freeze as hoped but it did create an interesting pattern of colors – I vote for the brown sugar and glycerine combination.

Using the Olympus E-M1MarkII and 60 mm macro, this is what the surface of the bubble look like as it attempted to freeze but instead swirled around creating beautiful patterns.  Maybe I had too much glycerine in the mix?

Colorful Soap Bubble

 

 

Frozen Soap Bubble Success

I tried a few different combinations of bubble mixes and lights but the wind was too strong carrying them away before they froze and or I didn’t like the way the lights illuminated the bubble. Then I decided to put the bubbles on top of our frozen pool. This idea proved successful since it seemed the soap bubble ‘stuck’ to the frozen snow on the pool cover. I used the setting sun to backlight the frozen bubble and the snow reflected light creating amazing patterns.  Again, I used the Olympus E-M1MarkII and 60 mm macro and was able to get an interesting set of freezing lines in the soap bubble. Although this was a similar mixture to the first image, the colors didn’t pop but created a muted look with fun lines and swirls.

Frozen Bubble

The temps were in the single digits but I think the amount of glycerine and sugar in the mix caused it to not freeze too fast but when it did, it was ‘solid’.

I continued experimenting with mixtures including coloring which ruined the mix causing no bubbles to create – what a messy, sticky solution 😐 I think the mixture will be on the pool cover until the spring thaw.

After tossing that mix, I used a mixture of dish soap, glycerine, and white sugar. The temps dropped below zero degrees F and the winds were over ten MPH.  I couldn’t sleep and was up around 0200 but went back to sleep thinking of what to do to ‘protect’ the fragile soap bubble (and my body).  Tis was not a good situation for being outside so I set-up shop in an area near our house which was still freezing (my mixture froze while in the container) but protected from the winds.

Using miniature toys for props in your frozen soap bubble images

It was then that I decided to use some of the miniature items I often use in macro work but never considered for frozen bubbles.

The pedestal was my first choice and I backlit the image by bouncing a strobe off a paper backdrop created from a summer image. Using a straw to ensure the bubble ‘landed’ where I wanted it, I took many images but the one when the frozen bubble started collapsing was my favorite.  (I might edit the others and post in the future – maybe when its 100 degrees out and folks are stating it is too cold 😀 .)

 

Bubble on pedestal – Collapsed

For this image, I used the Olympus 30 mm macro (which I believe is a sleeper lens) and had lots of fun. Using pocket wizards to trigger an off-camera flash, I bounced light into the backdrop and lit the scene.

Settings were –  f/4.5 1/30 second and ISO 200. Handheld.

Frozen in time! Be creative with your photography!

As I was ‘playing’, I couldn’t decide how to utilize a miniature chair and then it dawned on me to try reflections. I place the chair very close to the front of the bubble and using the Olympus 30 mm macro, I was able to create this fun image. No, the chair isn’t ‘Photoshopped’ in and the combination of two LED lights created the dimension to the scene. I had an LED headlight positioned to camera right and an LED panel light, camera left.

Frozen in Time – Chair in Frozen Soap Bubble

 

If the weather stays this cold, I will continue to play and post more images. Watch my Facebook and Instagram feed for more tips, tricks, and images.

We believe that people with passion can change the world for the better. … Steve Jobs

Think different!

Make the world a better place.

Also posted in beaver county, Landscape Photography, macro, mirrorless camera, Olympus, OM-D E-M1 Mark II, Photography Education

Fire in the sky | Chippewa Twp Park

As I was driving home on route 51 in Chippewa, I kept watching the sky.  One minute it was pure white and snow was blowing creating a minimal visibility white-out and the next minute, the sky was as bright as a summer evening.  After arriving home I kept watching the sky change colors and told my wife, I will be back soon, I need to get an image of this sunset.  “What sunset? Its a whiteout!” Grabbing my camera bag, I was off and my goal was to head to Monaca and catch the sunset over the Ohio River but I didn’t believe I would make it before the sky changed again. Therefore, I went to a nearby park in Chippewa Twp, only minutes from my home.

Grabbing my tripod and bag I was off to the edge of the pond and was not disappointed with how the sky kept getting deeper with color.  I am not sure if it was a combination of the snow swirling in the sky or something else but it was beautiful.  I decided to use the widest lens I have which is a 7 – 14 mm f/4 (Panasonic) and welcomed the strong reflections on the water without the use of any filters.

Fire in the sky | Sunset over water in Chippewa Twp

Knowing that I didn’t have much time, I quickly set up my tripod, leveled the camera, exposed the scene, and was blown away with what the Lord provided me in the sky and painted on the water.

If you know me, you will often hear me say that we don’t need to travel far to find beauty in our neighborhood. There are an unbelievable number of places to photograph in Beaver County to show off the beauty and wonder that we were given.

 

Photography humor: Ever since switching to digital, I find there are only positives and no negatives.

 


Technical Specs: Olympus E-M1MarkII f/8 ISO 640 7mm (equiv 14mm) | Panasonic 7-14mm f/4 | Manfrotto Tripod with Acratech Ultimate Ballhead | Landscape Photography | Gallery of Beaver County Images


From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the LORD’S name is to be praised. Psalm 113:3
Also posted in beaver county, Landscape Photography, mirrorless camera, mirrorless photographer, Olympus, OM-D E-M1 Mark II, reflections on the water, Travel Photography, Wedding Photography Tagged , , , , |