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melkor

A collection of macro images from yesterday

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hahaha @ superglue comments. Sadly, there are some "nature" photographers who do tricks like putting insects and arachnids in fridges/freezers to slow them down (it slows their metabolisms down). If you have to do that, you're not a nature photographer imho. I'm quite strict on this line of thought. Any nature photography should seek to not harm the subject. If one learns how to "stalk" their subject, you can get close. And yes, this close. It does take a lot of practice, and it is a hit and miss affair, some insects will allow you to come close, others will take off at the slightest movement. Such is the way of nature photography. When I miss a shot, I simply smile and think of the next time. It's a bit like a game. If I get a good shot, I win. It's a challenge.

 

Dave

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2 more shots from this weekend - the 2nd one a b/w effort (playing around with the most excellent Nik Silver Efex Pro BW plugin for Photoshop):

 

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Enjoy.

 

Dave

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2 more shots from this weekend - the 2nd one a b/w effort (playing around with the most excellent Nik Silver Efex Pro BW plugin for Photoshop):

 

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Posted Image

 

Enjoy.

 

Dave

Man .... you always bring the goods.

 

I am looking at a Sigma 105mm Macro for $460. Good price but still checking it will do what I want !

 

Maybe soon I can give some good in focus shots as the Bellows and extenders are hard to use.

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I did warn you that bellows/extenders are hard to use. I shoot hand held for those exact reasons. You'll love the freedom that a macro lens gives you! Did you see my Blue Banded Bee shots in the other thread?

 

Dave

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Unfortunately as good as it gets for me at the moment. There are some bloody nice photos in this thread from you guys and a few ideas I'm itching to try out. Really looking forward to getting back from our trip later on in the year and being able to spend some money on a decent lens set (no more bloody Tamron lenses!)

That's some very good shots Seehund. #1 has good colour and use of repitition and I like the lighting and composition as well. You don't have to be right up and close always for good nature shots. #2 - is that a crop? It's a very good shot, seems very sharp. If it's not a crop, you probably could crop into it I suspect. Lighting is nice too. #3 - you've done what many don't do - gotten down low and used a good angle. Don't worry about the DOF, it's not always possible with closeups. #4 is a very nice shot too - you haven't blown the Reds in this image, it's a subtle shot. DOF could probably be a bit more, but that's a nagging criticism. I like the rain drops as well.

 

I'll mention a piece of free software called combinezm/combinezp (there's a few different versions) - it's designed to do stacking of images, giving you the ability to combine slices so to speak and get a greater DOF than is actually possible:

 

http://www.hadleyweb.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/CZP/News.htm

 

It's pretty easy to use too, and best of all reliable, and free. If you get stuck, there's a tutorial on my website (www.macro-images.com). You're most welcome to download it etc.

 

Dave

 

 

 

I have been using Helicon Focus. It has done a great job in the past (But not free)

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http://www.flickr.com/photos/mickyj_photos/3262849972/

 

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http://www.flickr.com/photos/mickyj_photos/3250631018/

 

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http://www.flickr.com/photos/mickyj_photos/3253204086/

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I've heard good things about Helicon too. I was introduced to CombineZ/ZM by Brian Valentine (LordV) - check out his flickr. The guy's brilliant. His stacks are usually superb. His non stacked images are equally good imho. He's down to Earth, very polite, very helpful and very knowledgeable.

 

Dave

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I've heard good things about Helicon too. I was introduced to CombineZ/ZM by Brian Valentine (LordV) - check out his flickr. The guy's brilliant. His stacks are usually superb. His non stacked images are equally good imho. He's down to Earth, very polite, very helpful and very knowledgeable.

 

Dave

My Manfrotto 055xprob with 804rc2 head just arrived. Looks like I will be setting it up this weekend and attemping to use CombineZ :)

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hehehe. I suspect fun will be had. This is a shot from earlie this afternoon. Blue Banded Bee captured by Crab Spider (aka Flower Spider).

 

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It's a pity the Bee's head is slightly OOF (Out Of Focus) :( I only got the one shot at this angle before the spider moved (and didn't get a repeat angle offered).

 

Dave

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hehehe. I suspect fun will be had. This is a shot from earlie this afternoon. Blue Banded Bee captured by Crab Spider (aka Flower Spider).

 

...

Dave

Very Cool.

 

When you are taking shots like this, how far is the lens from he subject and what are you using for light ?

 

What lens are you using in this photo ?

Edited by michael.jenkin

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This was taken at 1:1, and with the Sigma 150mm. So working distance from front of lens element to subject was around 15cm. Lighting was provided by my 430ex on the hotshoe, and I was using LordV's Coca Cola diffuser rather than my usual sto-fen.

 

Dave

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This was taken at 1:1, and with the Sigma 150mm. So working distance from front of lens element to subject was around 15cm. Lighting was provided by my 430ex on the hotshoe, and I was using LordV's Coca Cola diffuser rather than my usual sto-fen.

 

Dave

I just checked LordV's Coca Cola diffuser on http://www.flickr.com/groups/macroviewers/...57594312315664/

 

It looks like my Lightsphere from Gary fong. http://store.garyfonginc.com/licl.html

 

Looks like I have what I need for the lighting :)

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mmm I'd never seen a Gary Fong diffuser before, doesn't look like much, and the example shots don't really impress me. I'd try the Coca Cola diffuser - is easy to make, and works very well. Plus, it's free.

 

Dave

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mmm I'd never seen a Gary Fong diffuser before, doesn't look like much, and the example shots don't really impress me. I'd try the Coca Cola diffuser - is easy to make, and works very well. Plus, it's free.

 

Dave

I have built it ... time to play. I will be trying it with my bellows until the Sigma 105 mm macro arrives

Edited by michael.jenkin

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mmm I'd never seen a Gary Fong diffuser before, doesn't look like much, and the example shots don't really impress me. I'd try the Coca Cola diffuser - is easy to make, and works very well. Plus, it's free.

 

Dave

 

:)

 

Posted Image

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don't wanna seem rude, but that setup looks rather dodgy...*-)

Yeah, it is the best I can do with the bellows until I get a real macro lens (On order).

The 150mm bellows is hard to use but better than extension tubes. I have tried it with Canon efs18-55mm and canon ef 70-210 mm. There is no apperature control or other settings(As the lens is not actualy connected electricly to the body). The lens is so far from the camera body that the flash needs to be hand held. This is the coke can diffuser.

 

The lens has to almost touch the subject, you have to get really close.

 

Here's a picture taken with this setup.

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Here's a link to an image of the mounting on a tripod. I had to be even more creative.

 

http://www.flickr.com/photos/mickyj_photos/4333743589/

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Rails are usually pretty solid. You may not get decent light with that setup though, the flash is too far back imho.

 

Dave

 

PS here's a shot from lst night - Blue Banded Bee at 2:1 or thereabouts:

 

Posted Image

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Rails are usually pretty solid. You may not get decent light with that setup though, the flash is too far back imho.

 

Dave

 

...

Yeah, that is why I have the remote trigger. So I can hold the flash with the other hand :)

I unbolt it and hold it closer, stretching the cable.

 

Can't wait for my Sigma 105mm to arrive !!!!

Edited by michael.jenkin

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