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The ROTATOR is a DIY tool which I removed from a broken washing machine, it's the engine block spindle that moves the drum in the machine. The rather heavy magnetic engine block with the rotatable axis is mounted on a plate using an extended attachment to the rotatable arm on which you can attach your tools and create a fluid circular movement by simply pushing it.


What you need:

  • Motor block of a washing machine

  • black spray can (matt)

  • Wooden board and 4 spax screws

  • Wooden or iron rod with a 45° drilled hole in one end

  • Imbus screw that fits into the motor's axle threads to hold the rod in place

  • I simply centered the four brackets of the axis block on a roller board so that I can move the tool during the exposure if necessary​

When the engine block and the extension arm are painted matt black, they can hardly be seen in the picture afterwards

Once the engine block is mounted on the plate, you only need cable ties or black gaffer tape to fix your lights to the extension.

Depending on which side of the extension you place the light on, different blind spots are created in which the light disappears in the shadow of the line of sight, so to speak.



The really interesting part starts with the experiments. On the one hand you can try out a wide variety of light sources on the ROTATOR, also partial spinning is interesting to "look inside" the rotation, on the other hand you can deepen different techniques with the camera itself:

  • Zoom the lens during the exposure, making sure that you do not shift the focus of sharpness

  • Movement of the tripod head while briefly covering the lens

  • Changing the tripod height while keeping the lens covered and then uncovering it in the new position creates an offset image

  • Placing different lights at different heights on the arm can create interesting 3D depth

  • Partial masking of LEDs with black gaffa creates black cutouts

  • Changing the color of the bulbs during rotation can be exciting

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