Working with glass and bugs

Discussion in 'Macro Photography' started by Overread, Jul 17, 2009.

  1. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Well in the past I have (accidentaly I might add) managed to get a very good effect in macro shots of insects on window glass and wanted to try again under more controled conditions to recreate the effect below.

    [​IMG]

    So first things first get a bug and some glass, with those I then placed the glass on a dark black (I wanted blue but didn't have any) surface and then the bug on top of that. Camera was then setup on a tripod and the flash held above the insect between camera and bug, with an angle to that the light is directed at the insect;

    [​IMG]
    http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2496/3729447886_c14fbbdacf_o.jpg

    That was the result - the reflection has come out well, though the glass has come out very dark. Further there is a lack of underlighting in the insect. I was hoping for the flash reflection to produce that effect, now however I think the setup needs some changes.

    Firstly the lighting needs to come from underneath as well as above - with the above light source being the dominant whislt the under more of a fill light. So that means a second flash and also more diffuse material as a base (dark/blue) so that reflections can still occurs, whilst also giving enough light to the base of the shot to show up the details under the bug
     
  2. harrison

    harrison TPF Noob!

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    Very cool effect. The black turned out a nice shade of blue. I have done a few of this just by chance on a window and it makes an interesting effect with a reflection.

    How do you get the bugs to stay still, and in position?
     
  3. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Yah just to comfirm the first is of the bug on window glass - the light from behind giving that good blue glow and underlighting.
    As for keeping the bug still, in both cases the bugs were suggish - the bee because he was hungry and cold indoors and the moth because he again he was cooler and also it was during the daytime. Finding and taking photos of insects on cool days and early in the morning works best for keeping them stilll - they are sluggish and not warmed up (cold blooded). Some people will put the bugs in a fridge, but I don't agree with that since its very easy to kill them by cooling too much or simply by the sudden temperature drop
     

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