Patterns with Pencils

Patterns with Pencils

This week I have decided to try something different – thanks to my Practical Photography magazine. I wanted to try a still life image from a different perspective and when I saw this particular exercise I decided to give it a go and I think the results are really effective!

Patterns with Pencils 3

I got a piece of plain, white paper and arranged some coloured pencils in a pattern. Then I mounted a piece of clear glass over the top and propped it up with 4 pint glasses. Using a straw, I gently placed droplets of water on the glass over the top of the pencil pattern.


The photographs were taken with my 50mm lens and I used an aperture of F4 with a shutter speed of 1/160 and ISO 400 (although this was set to auto) and auto white balance. I got as close to the droplets as my lens would allow and, although I tried manual focus, I found it easier on auto focus and keep re-focussing until the camera picked up on the droplets and put the background in blur.

The only edits I have done are to crop the images and increase the contrast as well as brighten them a little. I think I am happier with the first one as the pencils are more in focus although I do like the second one as it is much brighter.

UPDATE: On Tuesday 1st March 2016 I was thrilled to hear that I had won my first photography competition with the second image on this post for ‘Eyecatching’.

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  1. February 23, 2016 / 7:57 pm

    Woah Vic, this is an amazing effect! Thanks for sharing your tips. Stunning results.

  2. February 9, 2016 / 9:23 am

    Ah Vic, I love this! And I really like how you’ve explained how you created the shot. I was looking at the first two shots puzzled trying to figure out how you’d got those amazing pictures, then panned down. That’s so creative, I want to give it a go now. Thank you so much for joining #MyCapturedMoment xxx
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  3. February 8, 2016 / 2:45 pm

    What a great idea the end photographs are so effective. They look great! x #mycapturedmoment

  4. February 7, 2016 / 8:12 pm

    This looks wonderful, I love it. So clever and I had no idea that it was pencils until later in the post. So clever! #SnapshotSaturday

    • February 7, 2016 / 10:41 pm

      Thank you so much Lisa, I am so pleased you like it πŸ™‚ x
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

    • February 7, 2016 / 10:38 pm

      Thank you so much. I hadn’t thought of that, but it would! πŸ™‚
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

  5. February 4, 2016 / 9:43 pm

    This is so clever! It looks like something you’d need to create on Photoshop, yet it’s such a simple idea in reality. Brilliant.

    • February 7, 2016 / 10:36 pm

      Thank you so much – I was really surprised at how effective it is x
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

  6. February 3, 2016 / 9:37 pm

    Really lovely! The possibilities are endless with that aren’t they? πŸ™‚

  7. February 2, 2016 / 10:09 pm

    really clever victoria. i had no idea they were pencils when i first looked. i had to read your post then it clicked. fab idea.

  8. February 2, 2016 / 6:47 pm

    Ooo you clever little thing. I love it! Thanks for sharing X #mysundayphoto

  9. February 1, 2016 / 10:53 pm

    Oh wow this is amazing! I thought for a second it was created digitally, so much fun to be had with this!

  10. February 1, 2016 / 8:23 pm

    Ooh that is really clever I will have tottery this, I really want to get some good shots or raindrops x

    • February 7, 2016 / 10:58 pm

      Thank you Sarah – you definitely need to give it a go πŸ™‚ x
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

  11. February 1, 2016 / 4:04 pm

    How effective is that! Stunning.

    I love that you’ve shown us how it’s achieved too Victoria.

    • February 7, 2016 / 10:59 pm

      Thank you Shaz – I thought it was important to share so that people understood it was for real! πŸ™‚ x
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

    • February 7, 2016 / 11:00 pm

      Thank you Rosie – to be fair I did a course last year so what Emma is teaching I kind of already know! No harm in looking at the basics again though, not ever πŸ™‚ x
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

  12. January 31, 2016 / 9:46 pm

    Stunning and who’d have thought you could get such an amazing effect Vicky!

  13. January 31, 2016 / 9:22 pm

    Wow this is so effective, so pretty. #MySundayPhoto

    • February 7, 2016 / 11:02 pm

      I am so pleased you got to see it properly! Thank you Mary πŸ™‚ x
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

  14. January 31, 2016 / 6:44 pm

    This is such a beautiful picture. What a great effect, and so simple too!

  15. January 31, 2016 / 3:53 pm

    I know what you mean about the first one but I like the second one as the actual shape of the droplets is sharper if you know what I mean? Great fun though! πŸ™‚ x

    • February 7, 2016 / 11:04 pm

      I totally agree with you Lisa – I have to say that it was tough to decide which one to use as the header! x
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

  16. January 31, 2016 / 2:50 pm

    This is so clever and really beautiful! I’d like wallpaper like that πŸ™‚

  17. January 31, 2016 / 1:11 pm

    Thats so clever!!

  18. A Little Lyrical
    January 31, 2016 / 12:32 pm

    Wow, thats stunning!!!

  19. January 31, 2016 / 12:04 pm

    Oh wow these are amazing! And what a fab idea! When I saw the first photo I was wondering how you have done it – thanks for sharing!

    • February 7, 2016 / 11:14 pm

      Thank you so much Jenni – glad you enjoyed seeing how it was done too x
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

  20. January 31, 2016 / 10:58 am

    Oh wow they really are amazing pictures. I would never gave thought if it – brilliant x

  21. January 31, 2016 / 10:38 am

    That’s an amazing photo. So simple but so effective. I think I’ll have to give it a try myself one day! Thanks for sharing. #mysundayphoto

  22. January 31, 2016 / 9:49 am

    That is fantastic! Seems the result wasweld worth the effort. They look like boiled sweets!

  23. January 31, 2016 / 9:43 am

    Wow, I absolutely love this one! What a brilliant shot. I would have had no clue what it was if you hadn’t included the second picture.

  24. January 31, 2016 / 9:08 am

    Wow what a clever idea, personally I like the second one more. Both awesome

    Thank you for linking up

    • February 7, 2016 / 11:22 pm

      Thank you – and thank you for hosting πŸ™‚ It was tough to choose between the two!
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

  25. January 31, 2016 / 8:56 am

    Wow! I want to play! Amazing shot

  26. January 31, 2016 / 8:37 am

    Very clever, psychedelic shot. You are becoming a pro.

  27. January 31, 2016 / 8:35 am

    What a brilliant thing to do! I love the photos and could never have guessed in a million years how you managed to take them!

    • February 7, 2016 / 11:23 pm

      Thank you so much Sarah. I am so pleased I shared how I did it πŸ™‚
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

  28. January 31, 2016 / 7:51 am

    Ooh this is very lovely, creates such a pretty effect. I feel like trying it and showing the hubby πŸ˜‰

  29. January 31, 2016 / 7:17 am

    I absolutely love this image, such a simple yet effective shot #MySundayPhoto

  30. January 31, 2016 / 6:19 am

    What an amazingly simple yet effective idea! I think I may have to start reading that magazine. Love this image a lot. ALso love the fact you have four matching Yeovil Beer Festival glasses! #MySundayPhoto

    • February 7, 2016 / 11:26 pm

      Thank you so much John. Yes, I highly recommend that magazine – it is full of different things to try. Glad you noticed the glasses too!! πŸ™‚
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

  31. January 31, 2016 / 6:14 am

    Hi Victoria, I honestly thought they were marbles. Very clever, I like it.

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    • February 7, 2016 / 11:27 pm

      Thank you Debbie – they do look a bit like marbles πŸ™‚ x
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

  32. January 31, 2016 / 6:05 am

    I love this, it looks amazing. Thanks for sharing how to do it. I might have a go. #MySundayPhoto

    • February 7, 2016 / 11:27 pm

      Thank you Tara. You definitely should – it is great fun to try πŸ™‚ x
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

  33. January 31, 2016 / 3:44 am

    Spectacular! This is so clever and I love that you shared how you achieved this effect. I’m properly impressed.
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    • February 7, 2016 / 11:25 pm

      Thank you so much – I thought it was important to share the method behind it too πŸ™‚ x
      Victoria recently posted..A Moment in TimeMy Profile

  34. January 31, 2016 / 12:44 am

    Wow-these are so pretty. It is great to try out new techniques with your camera. I’m hoping to find the time to do more with mine too.

  35. January 31, 2016 / 12:27 am

    I loved the effect initially and tried to work it out how you had achieved such a great effect… only to scroll down and there it is.
    Thank you for sharing… I’ve a new camera and need to get to know it, so I may try this out.
    Have a great Sunday

    • January 31, 2016 / 12:41 am

      Thank you Neesie – have a great time doing it. The set up takes longer than the photography! x
      Victoria recently posted..Patterns with PencilsMy Profile

  36. January 31, 2016 / 12:16 am

    I love the explanation to go with this, I thought it was some kind of clever craft at first! A great effect, I think I need a 50ml lens now.

  37. January 31, 2016 / 12:05 am

    That is amazing! Such a fantastic effect, from normal household objects. You very clever lady xx

  38. January 31, 2016 / 12:05 am

    These are so fun and colourful, these really make me want to grab my ‘proper’ camera and start messing about

  39. January 31, 2016 / 12:05 am

    What fabulous photos – love the effect of the water droplets and the pencils themselves blurred in the background. Very tempted to give this kind of photo a try myself now! πŸ™‚

  40. January 31, 2016 / 12:04 am

    I saw you post this on Facebook and wondered how you achieved it! These photos are absolutely stunning!

    Laura x x x

  41. January 31, 2016 / 12:03 am

    What a great idea! How gorgeous is that photo! Would look great as a piece of wall art! Such pretty patterns x #MySundayPhoto
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