For a change of pace we are going to put a spin on things, literally, and focus on a new photo technique I have learned and have been working to master – the zoom and spin.
This is a technique developed by Randy Heath, a fellow photographer and with his instruction I am slowly mastering the skill it takes to capture a quality photo in this manner. It is fun and puts a new spin on subjects, giving them a unique, abstract look.
What I am finding is that bright colors work best, and it is best to take a lot of photos of the subject when shooting because you will get a lot of really trashy photos and only a few quality ones. I have also found that some subjects lead better to this technique than others, and by adjusting the starting point of the zoom and how fast you rotate the lens you can achieve a variety of looks.
When you spin the lens slower you are more apt to capture a bit of your main subject in focus so that viewers can determine what it was you were shooting. A faster zoom gives a more abstract appearance. I have also tried some moving subjects, which puts a unique “spin” on it, because you have the combination of the spin of the lens doubled with the speed of tracking your subject.
To capture this look you need is a DSLR camera and a zoom lens. Set your camera to anywhere between f22 and f40 — play with the settings until you achieve the look you want. Zoom in tight on your subject and push down enough to focus, then spin your lens as the same time you are completing the shot. If you have your camera set on continuous shooting you can spin in and out several times and capture several photos at different points. You can also vary the final outcome by changing the starting point at various levels of zoom, and zooming in and/or out while taking the shot.
One thing to remember is that this is a technique that takes a bit of practice, so don’t be surprised if the first few times you get a lot of pictures that look like major camera shake rather than an intended abstract. Once you master the skill you will enjoy the ability to add variety to your picture taking.
If the subject is something you want to make sure you capture a good photograph of I would suggest capturing a few good, quality photos first, then playing with this technique later as a fun addition to your photo collection.