Photos of water splashes are a constant source of amazement for many people, including photographers. While a macro lens, motion triggers, and special high-speed strobes are often used to capture these brief flashes of time, water splashes can be captured without a lot of special equipment. For this method of capturing water splashes you need a camera capable of manual settings and a bright sunny day.
Oral Medicine Syringe and a Glass
Helper or a Remote Camera Trigger
Shiny Surface to Drop Water Onto
Set up the surface you will drop water onto outside in bright sunlight. Use a chair or box to raise the surface to be relatively even with the lowest setting of your tripod.
Fill a glass with water and add food coloring until the color you want is achieved.
Set your camera on the tripod at the minimum focusing distance and prefocus on the center of your surface. To achieve good focus use a stand-in item. The sun should be behind the camera. The oral medicine syringe numbers will work very well. You will want to use a shutter speed of at least 1/4000 of a second to freeze the water and a reasonably wide depth of field (F-stop around 8 or higher) to make sure you capture the full depth of the splash. You are likely to get some food coloring on yourself and your camera so keeping a lens cleaning cloth and a cotton rag for cleaning up random spills.
If you don`t have an assistant to pour/drop the water for you then you`ll need to pour the water and trip the remote at the same time. Don`t worry about missing a shot, plan on taking numerous images to get the one you want. Using the oral syringe, drop the water at a steady rate onto the splash surface. While this is dropping, trip the shutter with the remote as much as possible.
Check your images to make sure focus is good and that exposure is ok. If the image is too dark try raising your film speed to increase the amount of light.