New to Macro

Discussion in 'Landscape & Cityscape' started by bazza, Sep 19, 2007.

  1. bazza

    bazza TPF Noob!

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    Hi all, just got a 50mm macro lens, so I am trying it out.
    Any hints/tips would be appreciated because this is my main field of interest and I would like to improve in it.. Thanks...

    I managed to get one shot of a bee and half a dragonfly, that I cropped as only the eyes were in focus.

    As always C & C needed... Thanks again...

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    More depth of field please. For macro stuff you'll need to at least be shooting at f/8, but more than likely you'll be shooting at f/11~f22 to get enough dof. F4 is way too shallow.
     
  3. bazza

    bazza TPF Noob!

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    Thankyou, thats what I need.. I'll try that next time I get out Thanks again.....
     
  4. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    Also if you are going to be shooting insects a lot, you might consider a longer focal length macro lens eventually to give you more working room.
     
  5. bazza

    bazza TPF Noob!

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    I know, but I could only afford a used 50mm at this time.. It'll have to do until I get better.

    Just hope they're not shy and let me get closer to them...
     
  6. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    Well, one trick, if you can catch them, is to put them in the freezer for a few minutes. It lowers their body temp and they will hardly move at all for several minutes while they warm up. A lot of bug photography is done this way.
     
  7. bazza

    bazza TPF Noob!

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    Really...

    Mmm... Where's my net?

    Seriously, thanks for your help, much needed.

    One question, Does macro need a tripod if you can or a bright day. because stopping down to f8 slows the shutter speed a lot, even when shooting with an iso of 400.
     
  8. TCimages

    TCimages TPF Noob!

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    I don't agree with this. There are so many opportunities to take shots that don't harm the insects. Get out in the field and with lots of practice you'll get great shots.
     
  9. TCimages

    TCimages TPF Noob!

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    This is a great start, but as mentioned, you'll need to work on the DOF. Keep in mind tho, higher f numbers require a lot more light so you'll need lots of ambient light, external flash or pump the iso so you can get reasonable shutter speeds for handheld shots. I also would not recommend going much over f16 as this takes you way out of the sweet spot of the lens which sacrifices sharpness. I recommend external flash, f10-13, shutter speed 200-250 (highest sync speed), ISO 100. This allows decent DOF, sharp images, and a shutter speed that allows you to handhold.

    Tripod- Many use them, I even have a specialized one, but IMO it's very limiting. They work great for flowers or other still objects, but moving subjects like Insects are tough, requiring you to constantly make height adjustments and changing angles.

    For me, Macro photograpy has become one of the most rewarding and fun hobbies. There is a whole new world out there that most never see with the naked eye and the best thing is, there is an endless supply of subjects.

    enjoy
     
  10. bazza

    bazza TPF Noob!

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    I totally agree. When you get close to an everyday insect it looks so different.
    May start with still objects like flowers to practice my DoF.

    Ps.. Was only kidding about my net, wouldn't dream of harming anything.. Practice is whats needed..

    Thanks for all the info ;)

    Another question, Do you guys use auto or manual focus to take these amazing shots??
     
  11. TCimages

    TCimages TPF Noob!

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    re: Focus - I use both Auto and Manual, but I have an opinion on manual while hand holding or shooting moving subjects...It's like using the One Shot mode in Auto, once you get the focus locked, it's so easy to move out of focus before you depress the shutter. The DOF is so thin that even the slightest movement will move your focus point. I highly recommend Auto Focus in AI Servo mode. This mode doesn't allow for you to re-frame your subject, so you may have to use focus lock to re-frame, but with the focus locked, you're back to square one. I've found that I normally crop to some degree anyway so thats how I frame the subject.

    Hope this was helpful
     
  12. bazza

    bazza TPF Noob!

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    Very helpful, thanks..

    I've seen your pics and have always wondered how you frame, focus and shoot, and get it so right.

    Thanks again all...
     

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