Paloma Rincón

The Technical Elegance of Broken Heart

Paloma Rincon is a creative still life photographer based in Madrid, Spain. Her latest creation, the mesmerizingly chaotic Broken Heart, combines high-speed photography with frozen flowers to create explosively elegant images. We’ve asked Paloma a few questions about her inspiration, workflow and the unique challenges of this exciting project. Broken Heart was shot using the Phase One XF 100MP Trichromatic Camera System.

Tell us a little about yourself and your sources of inspiration

“I am a still life photographer based out of Madrid, and you could say I’m known for my graphic, playful and contemporary approach. My work spans a wide variety of international projects for advertising and editorial, and more experimental personal projects, like Broken Heart.”

“Inspiration for my projects comes from the unexpected moments that materialize in everyday life and from trying to see the extraordinary in the ordinary. That can be the colors that surround me, the beautiful designs of nature, the texture in certain materials, or simply the interactions of light in the physical world.”

What inspired the Broken Heart project?

“Broken Heart was inspired by the inherent beauty of flowers. They are one of the principle genres in still life and I’m always using my curiosity to try to capture them with new and interesting approaches.”

“I’ve been wanting to use the liquid nitrogen technique for some time. The combination of technical challenge and the carefully art-directed image seemed to be a great balance for Broken Heart. I finally had the opportunity to use liquid nitrogen to freeze flowers into fragile objects during my Madrid PhotoFest workshop. This new technique was very inspiring and exciting – I never knew what was going to happen next!”

Medium Format in general and more specifically high-resolution is often criticized as being complicated

when shooting high-speed images. Do you think this is a myth?

“It is a matter of being very precise, but this is not exclusive to medium format. Shooting high-speed images is a very demanding task that requires finely-tuned equipment and the XF 100MP Trichromatic Camera System makes it simple with the advanced tools that are available. Another benefit of Medium Format is the increased flexibility – the higher resolution allows for much more creative freedom during the post-production process.”

Can you tell us about your set-up and the process of Broken Heart in detail?

“The ‘heart’ of the Broken Heart set-up was the XF 100MP Trichromatic Camera System with a Leaf Shutter lens with 1/1600th flash sync. For lighting, I used Profoto lights that were tuned to balance the amount of light with the duration of the flash. Once they were configured, the camera’s ISO was increased and aperture is chosen to create a nice exposure.”

“To gain a better depth of field for the base image, I used the Focus Stack feature to secure the foundation of the composition before adding the more unpredictable elements. For Broken Heart, it was the liquid nitrogen-frozen roses. Then, a MIOPS Smart Trigger was placed so that the flower “breaks” the laser sensor to trigger the capture. Adjusting the laser and experimenting with the distance from the impact zone made it possible to capture the exact moment the flower hit the ground.”

Why did you choose to use a Phase One camera to capture these shots?

“The XF 100MP Trichromatic Camera System and Capture One is the perfect combination of hardware and software that lets me get the crispy, polished and bright results that I love my work to have. With Broken Heart, I had to solve some synchronization challenges for the very precise action, but the overall result was as beautiful as I had expected.”

Dive into the world of Paloma Rincon

Explore more of the amazing images that were created during the Broken Heart shoot and discover more of Paloma Rincon’s enchanting works on our Instagram account here.