Thursday, 27 September 2012

Slow Shutter Speed Test

I looked a lot last year and over the summer at super slow mo photography from Marey's original experiments and photographic sequences through to using Twixtor to create intermediate frames in video to fake a super slow mo effect. These methods looked at creating high numbers of still images of moments of the motion that can be brought together as video frames to create the impression of motion when played at a high enough frame rate the eye stops recognising them as individual images but as a continuous representation of motion. The image above is a still from a video I made of an instant during the act of hitting a punchbag.

I wanted to look at the idea of motion capture from the opposite perspective, by using a slow shutter speed to capture and entire sequence of motion in one image. The images below are of the same act of hitting the punchbag but using a 2 second shutter speed. Shooting like this in normal light blurs the motion so much that the motion becomes almost invisible, with only stationary or slow moving elements becoming visible.

To invert this so that the motion becomes clearly visible rather than stationary objects I shot in the darker using different coloured lights to identify the motion of the two objects; red for the punchbag and white for the hand. The outcome is an image showing the motion trails for the two elements. The thickness/intensity of the motion trails represents the speed that the object is moving at that stage of the motion.

The image below was taken with a 10 second shutter allowing a series of punches to be captured. The punches of the fist are clearly distinguished from the withdrawing of the punch by the width of the line showing that the punch is quicker than the withdrawal.

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