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A Few Tips For Mind-Bending Glass Ball Photography

Glass Ball

Finding new ideas for photography can be difficult. There are only so many apps and settings you can play around with on your phone, and unless you plan to photoshop a tiger into your picture, they can’t really achieve anything too invigorating or exciting.

That’s why new photography trends like the glass ball should be embraced with open arms. Taking the form of an ordinary, transparent sphere, a glass ball has the same optic quality as any professional camera lens, helping you take a picture that is both stunning and mind-bending through the use of refraction.

What Is Refraction?

Refraction photography is a process which occurs when light passes through a dense material such as glass. When this happens, the light bends, causing a distortion of the surrounding imagery to occur inside the object. In the case of a crystal lens ball, the spherical nature of the ball along with the crystal material makes it especially susceptible to refraction, causing a high-quality, surreal image which is perfect for a glossy, professional-looking Instagram page.

Why Would You Use A Glass Ball?

A glass ball is a tool for either a professional or amateur photographer. A lot of us take great pride in a slick and beautiful Instagram page, not only for friends and family to enjoy but also for us to treasure and enjoy for years in the future. This is especially true for photo book lovers who turn their Instagram profile feed into their very Instagram photo book. This can act as a portfolio of sorts, showcasing the best of your photography, as well as the likes and comments that have come with it.

If you’re strapped for new photography ideas, however, then a glass ball can provide you with varying options to play around with and create something a little bit different. Heck, it’s even got its very own Instagram page. So for anyone needing a few tips on how to operate one, here are some ideas to get you going:

Creativity Is Key

It’s important to remember that the subject you are photographing will look small in a glass ball if you’re not close. That’s why you should get as close as possible and use a bit of creativity to allow the subject to fill the ball. Think of your glass ball as a wide-angle 16mm lens and remember, you’re not taking the picture with a wind-up camera. You have plenty of opportunities to get it right, so try out as many as you can.

All The Usual Suspects Still Apply

When it comes to glass ball photography, you’ll find that all of the usual suspects still apply when it comes to taking a good picture. You will want to factor in the light (strongly lit subjects shine brighter through the ball and minimise reflections) and ensure to take pictures during the golden hour as often as you can.

Natural, interesting scenes are also important. While it can be tempting to plonk a glass ball anywhere, it won’t necessarily make for an intriguing image. The angle of the phone lens is similarly crucial. You don’t want to be placing a glass ball on the ground and simply bending over to capture it. Prepare to get down on your hands and knees if you want the picture to come out well.

A Reflective Surface Is Perfect

If you’re scratching your head about location, then the beach can be a perfect place to start. Placing a glass ball on a reflective surface (such as the sand after a wave) can allow you to capture a number of alternate reflections in the picture itself.

If you are nowhere near a beach, then a simple puddle after rain will also suffice. Once again, allow your creativity to flow. Thinking outside of the box could even lead to a glass ball photograph that has never been done before.

Don’t Do It Alone

Lastly, if you are using a glass ball to upgrade your Instagram or photo book, then doing it alone is not necessarily the best option. While it can still lead to some interesting landscape photographs, Instagram is all about photographing you and your friends having fun and living life.

In this way, try to capture yourself or your friends in the ball. Or, alternatively, have one of your friends hold it in mid-air so you can take a picture of both them and the refracted surroundings. These always make for the best glass ball photographs, and if you enlist that help, you will be sure to take your own to another level.


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