Help! Funny outlines on my almost-first macro shot

Discussion in 'Macro Photography' started by Orchida, Jan 31, 2010.

  1. Orchida

    Orchida TPF Noob!

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    Hi, I was practising with my new macro lens in the garden a couple of weeks ago and took this. Why are there funny blurred "outlines" to some of the buds, especially in bottom left hand corner?

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Hmm what settings did you take the shot on? If you used a slower shutter speed it could be that small movements lead to the double image formed (esp if you used a slower shutter speed and flash)
     
  3. Orchida

    Orchida TPF Noob!

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    I am a beginner so I hope I'm giving suitable answers here! This was taken with 35mm macro lens, f3.5, 1/80 sec exp.
     
  4. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Hmm I'm going to go with it being too slow a shutter speed. The line as I see it is fairly well defined so I am edging away from it being a lens based error (though foreground blurred areas can do odd things). Whilst with a 35mm lens the shutter speed should be fast enough to counter handshake things get more noticable at macro distances and further wind (even light wind) can also affect the final shot.
    Slower shutter speeds are possible with macro - though idealy you want a tripod and also a very still day with no wind to move the subject. This is why flash is often used for macro work since it helps to allow a fast shutter speed and the use of flash itself also freezes the motion in a shot. In addition apertures used for macro work tend to be smaller (that means bigger f numbers) so that the depth of field (area of the shot in focus) is increased. It's not uncomon to work between f8 and f13 with macro work (f16 is a good limit - if you go any smaller diffraction will start to take place and soften the shot).
    This is not to say wide aperture macro is not done it certainly is - but its a very hard art to master because of the tiny depth of field.

    Ps is that the tokina 35mm macro?
     
  5. Orchida

    Orchida TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for your feedback! I do understand the basics of shutter speeds and exposures - I just need to start applying them more often! I quite liked the blur in this photo but agree that probably I should reduce it in order to make a "good picture".
    I know I need to get a tripod - there's a very old one in the house somewhere. Tomorrow I will try to take the same picture again and get it looking better.

    I'm sure this is a silly question - but I hear that long zoom lenses are also more susceptible to handshake - so this is true of both extremes?

    Thanks

    And it's an Olympus Zuiko macro lens that I've got.....
     
  6. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    The longer the focal length the more it will amplify your hand motions - the general rule is your shutter speed should be no slower than 1/focal length of the lens. So for a 50mm lens 1/50sec and for a 300mm lens 1/300sec. Shooting the 300mm at 1/50sec without a tripod would incure image shake.

    Also the further away you shoot the more your hands moving will affect the shot- a 300mm lens being shot as close as it can can get away with slower shutter speeds than if you are aiming far into the distance.

    However as you move into the macro world the effect of handshake also becomes more noticable as well - even with framing the subject, but also in causing image blur.

    Also always remember that a "good" and "correct" photo is the photo you wish to create from the camera - common "laws" and "rules" of composition and exposure and content can help refine what you might wish to create in a final work, but the final image should be what you want to make :)
     
  7. Dwig

    Dwig TPF Noob!

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    Anything that magnifies the image increases the movement problems.

    Also, in macro work there is another aspect of motioni "blur" that is quite different from the common lateral and rotational blur. With macro you can also blur the image by moving closer or further from the subject during the exposure. With pictures at conventional distances this is insignificant, but in macro its a major consideration and absolutely no lens or body based image stabilization system does anything to help. IS systems only help with straight line lateral motion.

    The dark "halos" could also be an attribute of the quality of the bokeh (out of focus blur) that your lens produces.
     
  8. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    Yes, I agree with Dwig; the outlines appear to me to be caused by the way that lens,at that f/stop, in that situation, is rendering the out of focus areas.
    The lines follow the contours of the out of focus pods, and the black-ish color is caused because the pods that have shadows on the camera-left side of the picture are, well, dark on that side...the shadowed areas when thrown well out of focus, cause a slight darkening of the image, and it is visible because the background behind the shadows is lighter in tone.
     

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