Playing with Macro Photography at the Kitchen Sink

Here’s an easy way to make something in your kitchen using a macro lens. Yesterday, while I was washing dishes, the water stream hit an eggs cup and bounced up in concentrated jets, splashing water all over me.

It has happened to us all, and it is something we all regret. The macro photographer in me saw that the jet that sprang up from the egg cup was actually quite interesting.

So I pulled out my Sony A7 III camera, my Godox T685 external flash and my Venus Laowa 60mm macro lens and began taking photos. To my surprise, the results were quite cool.

The ideal placement for the flash is behind the water stream. But not directly behind it. Instead, place it at an angle that allows the flash to shine through your lens. For better results, you should use a diffuser to your flash. I bought a plastic light dome at a hardware shop. For more information, see the video. You could also point the flash at a surface near the sink, such white tiles or the underside your cupboard. This will allow for excellent diffusion.

The flash should be set at 1/16 to 1/32 strength. Your camera should be set to ISO 100. The aperture should be f/8 or F/11. A shutter speed of around 1/60 seconds is recommended. It doesn’t matter what shutter speed you use, the flash is fast (in the magnitude 1/10000s) so it will hold the majority of the exposure light anyway.

Keep your eyes closed and steady so that water doesn’t get on your lens. Once the water is out of focus, blast off with the camera. Focus magnification or focus peaking are options. You can also take test shots to ensure that the photos are sharp. You will get photos that are similar to those I took.

I placed a black T-shirt on the sink side, behind the water stream, to create a more exotic background and better seperation of the subject.

You can try many angles with the flash, camera and water splashing up. Also, you might want to splash water against other things, such as an egg cup, spoon or another object. The shots I used in this article were taken over 45 minutes. If you take more time, you might get better results.