Refraction is a mind-bending idea. Light passes through a clear object, and it comes out the other side, inverted. The Shooting Challenge results that follow are must-sees, the winner is astounding and...well...we busted a cheater, too.

Lead Shot - Horizon

Evening sunset across Puget Sound. Shot was taken with a Nikon D90 and
50mm f1.8 lense @ f5.6, 1/200, ISO 100.
[Ed note: The inversion lines up perfectly with the horizon, fantastic effect.]
- Nick Sprankle



Editor Note: Hey Gayle D., professional photographer. Just a quick note to let you know that you broke the rules of our little weekly contest, submitting a photo that you took back in 2005 with your Kodak P850—a pretty hot camera half a decade ago. The rules state you need to take and submit a new photo.

You may not think it's a big deal, but it really spoils the fun. Please consider yourself free to participate properly in the future...just please follow the rules next time.

You Should See the View


Rebel XS, 200mm, f 6.3, 1/320
This is a view outside my apartment window. It was pretty crappy in NYC today, so I chose black and white to help portray the mood.
[Ed note: it's particularly striking that the window is actually dirty but the glass ball is perfectly clear.]
-Joseph LaBate

Simple Inversion


After spending the better part of the week searching for a crystal ball I finally located one and took off to the local botanical garden to do some shooting. This specific shot was taken in an area which is very popular for wedding photography in my area. I took the shot by hand with my Canon 7D with a Canon 15-85 lens. My settings were ISO 200, 1/250, F/9. Special credit for the shot location goes out to my wonderful girlfriend, Jen.
-Branden Kerr



Taken with a Kodak Z915
Water drops on a spider's web above an ivy leaf. Shot through an opening in the top of an old barrel lying on the ground.
[Ed note: see it big here]
-Stephen Brookes

Fourth Dimension


[Ed note: No description, but cool shot!]
-Sally Reece

Teddy Drop


Having recently undergone lasik surgery, my wife needs to apply eye drops frequently. I took advantage of this and shot as she administered her nightly drops. Refracted in the drop is her lovable bedside teddy bear of Japanese origin, which I turned upside-down so as to appear in a favorable orientation.
Shooting Info:
Sony A550, Tamron 90mm Macro Lens, f5.6, 1/125 sec. with built-in flash, from minimum focus distance.
-Ben Torode

Andrew Jackson, Portrait


Using a canon EOS rebel t1i with a Tamron 18-200mm 1:3.5-6.3 lens, ISO 3200, F6.3 and 1/15 shutter speed.
Out of all the shots I took, this one came out to me the most meaningful. I used a tripod and placed a glass marble on a mirror and put some cash over it to refract Andrew Jackson's face. To me this photo represents the irony of money and happiness because Jacksons face looks like he's frowning, but that's your call.
[Ed note: It's almost as if he's saying, "Put me back!!"]
-Connor Lee



I drilled a small hole through the glass of an incandescent bulb and filled it with water. Image was shot with a Sony a700 camera. 1/30 sec at f/13, 200 ISO and lens at 105mm. Viewing newer technology through old.
[Ed note: Wonderful concept, perfectly executed.]
-Logan Buell

Now, not everyone in the gallery below (full sizes on flickr) captured a true refraction. You'll see a few reflections (like the first shot in the first gallery) and other misses. But I was glad to see people try, so I included the photos anyway as a general learning opportunity for us all—a non-judgmental version of what not to do.

As always, thanks for the participation. It's the most fun I have all week.

Gallery 1


Gallery 2

Click to view