Photography School: Rain Drops on a Window

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As promised yesterday, here's how you shoot the rain drops photos I used here and here. And in the today's lesson :-).

1) The usual camera settings would apply, depending on the conditions: available light, moving objects, etc., and on the effects you're planning e.g. a nicely blurred background from a large aperture (f 1.4). A very small aperture is not recommended as the background would be too visible and spoil the effect. You want a blurred background but that's still recognizable, how blurred it's up to you. 

2) I shot these photos from a moving car and they are OK, but it's obviosuly better if you can find a window with an interesting background. Even if the background is out of focus, it still matters so cluttered backgrounds would work here as poorly as any cluttered ones where they aren't blurred. Take the time to find a suitable background as it's an important component of your photo.

3) Place the camera very close to the window and make sure there aren't any reflections. This is not easy with windows so try changing the camera position until you find one with no reflections.

4) Focus on the rain drops and not on anything in the background. Set manual focus and lock as the lens will tend to focus on the larger objects and not on the small rain drops. This is not easy so keep trying!

5) Shoot! As always, you need to take several photos and experiment with various settings until you're happy with the end result. In my experience these shots work best in black & white, or with a desaturated colour scale.

Good luck!

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