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Old Jul 16, 2010, 1:33 PM   #1
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Default Smokin' Hot Wheels?

This little race car came in a promotional package of AA Duracells some time ago, and I never knew what to do with it until now. I thought to use it in this months challenge, although it might have been more appropriate for the last one or two since I thought to try to find a way to simulate movement with a still object. After trying several combinations of lenses and adapter rings, I settled on mounting an old series VIII 6P repeater on the Tamron 70-300 macro zoom. The repeater was not designed for less than full frame cameras nor was it intended for close-ups, so I couldn't get all 6 repeat images in the frame and still get the effect I wanted. Because the car is black and white, I chose a neutral gray tabletop for background, but it has a semi-shiny surface which picked up a reflection which repeated for an uneven background in the shot I wanted to use. Unfortunately, the repetitions lack sufficient edge contrast to allow me to isolate the images and replace the background. I tried a black and white conversion, but for the same reason that was not satisfactory.

In the second image, which I would have preferred to use in color, the combination of the uncoated special-effects filter, plus the lens (which has known PF tendencies) produced unacceptable purple fringing around the numbers (which were not repeated in the first shot), but there was sufficient contrast for a black and white conversion; to eliminate the distracting background reflections I had to lighten it overall, but I kind of like the result.

When time permits, I will try for better results, but in the meantime let me know what you think of the approach. It may remind you more of transportation to another dimension, than an illusion of motion!

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Old Jul 16, 2010, 2:27 PM   #2
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I like em both Pen.
Guess that doesn't really help, does it?
The reflection in the first one really doesn't detract from it, in my opinion. If I had to choose one over the other I think it would be #1
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Old Jul 16, 2010, 9:40 PM   #3
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Really cool effect. I, too, like the first one.

Paul
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Old Jul 16, 2010, 10:38 PM   #4
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Hi penolta,

I like it!

I don't know if this is close to what you might have wanted, but I thought I'd give it a quick try.

I used PSP X, but I believe that most of the image editors have different modes for their clone brushes. For the background, I used the "lighten" mode which will make darker areas lighter, but doesn't really change color or texture, and will only lighten to the brightness level of the clone source. Use hardness = 0 so you don't get a hard shape/edge to the clone, and maybe @ 30% opacity with multiple applications to get a good blend. I also unchecked the box that locks the relative location of the clone source to the target so I could use the exact same source across the frame. When unlocked, each time I click, it applies the clone, but then I can move the target independently while the source remains stationary.

Of course, the best result would be to shoot this against a uniform background, and a green screen setup might be cool as it could possibly make it easier to insert your own BG. . .

I also used the clone brush in "color" mode to get rid of the color aberrations, with hardness and opacity the same. I used the gray background as the source to mute the purple and orange fringing, then added some of the red back to the "S"s in "Speedpass" by cloning the color from one of the other letters. The one thing that you have to watch with cloning in the color mode is stark white or black areas as the source -- sometimes this gives some really bizarre results, but there's always the undo button. . .

The clone brush is my friend. . .

Scott
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Old Jul 18, 2010, 11:16 AM   #5
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Interesting results - and it's cool that you could come up with a good use for the repeater. My father had bought several of these types of things and I've always wondered how to use any of them effectively. I'll have to keep this in mind, a neat idea.
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Old Jul 18, 2010, 11:27 AM   #6
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very cool idea, i like how these turned out.
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Old Jul 18, 2010, 12:56 PM   #7
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Thanks for the opinions and comments - much appreciated. Obviously my quickie attempts at pp were not as effective as Scott's, but I was more interested in what people thought of the idea than the quality of the initial images. At least 5 of you (so far?) like the idea, so it looks like it is worth pursuing, and when time permits, I will follow up on it.

Back in the days of film when brick-and-mortar photo stores with close-out bargain bins were in their heyday, I picked up several of these special effects "filters" (3P, 6P, 3R and 5R), but really never found a use for them (along with any number of other gadgets I've never used). With the advent of digital and forums like this, the opportunities for experimentation and evaluation are far greater, and the fun side of photography is much enhanced.
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Old Jul 18, 2010, 1:41 PM   #8
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Penolta, I must confess I don't exactly understand the technique you used, I do however like the results you got. Scotts Photoshop technique was also over my head but I also like what he achieved.

Lou
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Old Jul 18, 2010, 5:27 PM   #9
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Lou, repeaters are prisms mounted in front of a lens in a rotating frame like a polarizing filter. The 6P (P for parallel) has half the disc of flat glass, and the other half has 5 graduated parallel prismatic facets; the 3P has a central slab with a parallel facet on each side; the 5R (R for radial) has a central flat section surrounded by four facets in radial fashion; the 3R has three facets arranged like a pie of three triangular slices with their points meeting in the center. Properly matched to the diameter and focal length of the lens they are mounted on, they will show repeated images, either partial or entire, depending on the subject size and distance from the lens.

To make the images of the car simulating motion, I couldn't use complete images of the car, or it would have looked like a procession of cars, nor could I use images that were too overlapping, or there wouldn't have been enough left of the first image (or any other) to show enough of the car. Getting it so that all 6 images showed, the cars were too small and didn't show as much blur, and any fewer than those I did use didn't convey the illusion of motion. Even so, these are more like multiple exposures with overlapping frames, rather than one continuous slow exposure, as could have been achieved by panning.
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Old Jul 19, 2010, 5:43 AM   #10
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Penolta, thanks for the thorough explanation of the repeater.

I had never seen or heard of it before. Live and learn!

Lou
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