Water Drop

I happen to see this perfect water drop several weeks ago and tried to capture it with the cameras that I had at the time. It later occurred to me that this was a good study in how sensor size (and camera size) effects your options.

(I should have tried to capture an image with my iPhone, too, but didn’t at the time because the minimum focus distance with Camera+ would not result in an image able to compete with these images.)

Some factors to consider:

  • Smaller cameras/sensors could get closer, but the physics of the refraction of the buildings in the water drop required you to get lower the closer you got to the water drop.
  • Smaller sensors may result in tighter actual aperture (and therefore more depth of field), but getting closer to the subject also decreases depth of field.
  • The narrower the depth of field, the more precise your focus has to be on your subject. Shoot a lot and check your results before leaving your subject.


20160107 080500 DSCF1619 XT1_Crop 55mm (85mm) 18in_Crop_DCE

20160107 081114 DSCF1066 XE2_Crop 230mm (350mm) 3.6ft_Crop_DCE

20160107 082256 IMG_9854 G15_Crop 6mm (27mm)_DCE

20160107 082501 IMG_9868 G15_Crop 20mm (90mm)_DCE

20160107 082927 DSC02212 T900_Crop 6mm (33mm)_DCE

(All crops were the same pixel dimensions (2600×2600) before resizing.)

Minimum focal distance for:

  • Fuji 18-55mm at 55mm (85mm FF equiv) is 18″.
  • Fuji 50-230mm at 230mm (350mm FF equiv) is 3.6ft which ended up with a closer image than the 55mm and has a shallower depth of field
  • Canon G15 is
    • 0.4″ at 6mm (27mm FF equiv) but I could only get about 1″ away due to a branch. The buildings also required me to be at a lower angle.
    • a few inches at 20mm (90mm FF equiv). I could get lower to capture the buildings in the droplet, but the image is more warped
  • Sony T900 is also 0.4″ at 6mm (33mm FF equiv) but the body/a branch blocked the lens from being low enough to capture the buildings in the droplet

This goes to show you that it is important to remember that:

  • Cameras are tools to getting the image you want
  • and cameras, like many tools, require multiple sizes to deal with different problems.

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