Along with some amazing images, we’ve also provided some quick photography tips by photographers who are experts in these fields.
In August, unsurprisingly, many of our photo ideas take inspiration from the ongoing Olympics in London.
But we’ll also have you snapping your holidays, weddings, bugs in your back yard and more.
Remember: don’t forget to come back at the end of the month and share what you’ve done on our Facebook wall.
01 Capture a bug’s life
Photograph the world at close proximity and you’ll be amazed at the results,” says retired microbiologist and keen macro photographer Brian Valentine. “99.9% of my macro shots are taken in my back garden.”
Brian took this shot of a 4mm Chironomid midge early one morning when the dew on the ground had yet to dry off. “I found the midge on top of my compost bin,” he explains. “It wasn’t moving anywhere, so I set up my camera with my Canon 65mm f/2.8 macro lens attached, and rested the barrel on the side of the bin.”
To ensure the midge was captured in sharp focus, Brian used so-called focus-stacking. “Softening due to diffraction can be a problem at narrow apertures,” he explains, “so I often shoot in this way.”
To get his finished image, Brian took a sequence of eight different shots at f/7.1, but with each one focused on a slightly different part of the midge.
He then merged the sharp bits from each of the images together using Zerene Stacker software, to produce an image that’s pin-sharp from front to back.
In order to light the midge, Brian used his Canon Speedlite 430EX flashgun set to auto, and to soften the light from the flash he attached a homemade diffuser.
“I also placed a blue milk-bottle top behind it, as I wanted the image to have a blue sheen that enhances the crystal water drops.”
Get started today…
- Head to your garden or local park. Early morning is the best time to get out and look for surfaces where bugs like this may be drying out.
- A macro lens is best for pro results, but if you haven’t got one, an extension tube attached to a normal lens is the next best thing.
- Stack the focus by turning the focus ring one small step for each frame. Use a tripod or rest the lens on a steady surface to keep the camera in the same position and set the aperture to around f/8 (check out these great tips for how to hold a camera steady when you don’t have a tripod).
- To process the image, use Zerene Stacker software. A free 30-day trial can be downloaded from http://goo.gl/oX7oD.
PAGE 1: Capture a bug’s life
PAGE 2: Shoot a summer wedding
PAGE 3: Capture moving action
PAGE 4: Capture action with drama
PAGE 5: Line up a summer beach shoot
PAGE 6: Photograph sea fowl
PAGE 7: Photograph your summer holidays
PAGE 8: Capture the colour of summer flora
PAGE 9: Take advantage of stormy skies
Creative photo ideas: shoot outdoor portraits with reflections
Frozen flower photography: the perfect rainy day photography project
Free lensing: dismount your lens for the ultimate creative effect
4 ways to make more creative zoom burst photos