The development of a nondestructive, full-field, quantitative optical technique, and its feasibility to study dynamic deformations of opaque and diffusively reflecting solids under transient loads, are discussed. The technique involves recording a sequence of dynamically changing two-beam speckle interference patterns (also called holographic speckle patterns) of a rapidly deforming body which is doubly illuminated by a laser light source. The time sequence of speckle patterns is recorded by means of a high-speed camera on an ultra-sensitive 35-mm film. The developed negatives are then digitized by a CCD camera into an image processing system. An initial speckle pattern corresponding to the undeformed state of the object is taken as the reference, and subsequent speckle patterns are digitally subtracted (reconstructed) from it to produce time-varying fringe patterns corresponding to the relative deformation of the test object. In order to gain confidence that the technique can be used to record truly transient deformation, it is tested here on a vibrating plate at resonance, thereby obtaining the evolution of the fringe pattern during 1/2 cycle of deformation corresponding to 160 µs.