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Simulating a reflected image in a puddle?


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#1 Jean Paul DiSciscio

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 11:02 PM

I need a shot of a puddle with the reflected image of my exterior location (the iron gates of a hospital fence), while it rains into the murky puddle, breaking up the image.

My first approach was projecting the image (using a video projector) into water, and letting water droplets fall into the basin to manipulate a shot from a puddle on a rainy day. Didn't work.

Any suggestions? Would it be easier to just bring a tub to the actual location, reflect the image in it, then add my simulated rain? If so, what's the best way to light this? Its a daylight shot.

-J.P.
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#2 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 03 February 2010 - 02:38 AM

I need a shot of a puddle with the reflected image of my exterior location (the iron gates of a hospital fence), while it rains into the murky puddle, breaking up the image.

How tight is the shot? What is the surface color/texture underneath the puddle (black asphalt, gray concrete?) What other details do you need to see reflected (sky, bushes, trees, hospital wall)?

I would think doing it for real would probably be the most simple and look the best. Can't you just pour water on the sidewalk and make a real puddle? Creating the rain would be the easiest part, just have a person on a two step ladder with a bucket. You could either poke holes in the bottom of the bucket for a more extreme effect or just have them create droplets with their hands.
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#3 JD Hartman

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Posted 07 February 2010 - 04:58 PM

Which part didn't work, projecting the image in the puddle, or breaking up that projected image with simulated rain? Did you try a mirror or shiny mylar on the bottom of the pool? I'd use a watering can for the rain, maybe mix some fine dark powder in the water and create a murky suspension as the "rain". For many things like this, research can only get you so far, experimentation will lead you toward success. Theatre books might provide some suggestions for rain, reflections and puddles.
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#4 Chris Keth

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 05:03 PM

First the simple solution: why can't you just create a puddle on the ground at the location and shoot that?

If that's not possible, I would make a puddle with a hose on a clear day. Doesn't matter where but somewhere open will be easier because you need it to be clear of buildings and things that aren't at the real location. Shoot that so that the puddle is reflecting the blue sky. Use that blue color to key in (or maybe a luma-key will work best since wet pavement will be very high contrast with very little between very bright and very dark) a very low angle "puddle vision" shot of the location. Remember that the reflected image will be upside down.
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#5 James Erd

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 03:47 PM

My first approach was projecting the image (using a video projector) into water, and letting water droplets fall into the basin to manipulate a shot from a puddle on a rainy day. Didn't work.


If the projector is aimed at the puddle that won't work, but if the projector is aimed at a screen or wall behind the puddle you'll get a better result.

You might want to try doing this indoors in a large room/studio with an old 35mm slide projector. This way you won't get artifacts from the video being out of sync with your camera.

The main source of light would be the projection and what ever light you are hitting the puddle with in the foreground. You'd also like the projector and foreground to be on dimmers so you can balance the effect.
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