How to photograph anything: best camera settings for macro photography

How to photograph anything: best camera settings for macro photography

In the fourth part of our Shoot Like A Pro series on how to photograph any subject you want we take a closer look at the best camera settings for macro photography. Getting sharp macro and close-up photos takes time to master, but here we show you all the best camera settings you should use to shoot classic macro compositions, shoot handheld and shoot shallow depth of field.

How to photograph anything: best camera settings for macro photography

Best camera settings for classic close-up shots

With the camera on a tripod and a static subject, you’ll have plenty of time to adjust your settings when shooting many close-up or macro subjects.

Using Manual exposure mode will give you complete control, but as the subject and camera are static, the aperture is more important than the shutter speed. Start by setting this to f/11.

Best camera settings for classic close-up shots

The depth of field is limited when shooting macro, so focusing is critical. With a static subject, you should use Manual focus mode, and carefully focus on the main focal point 
of the subject.

How to set up your camera to shoot close-up photography

How to set up your camera to shoot close-up photography: focus mode

Focus mode   Manual
With a static subject, switch to Manual focus. Focus on the main focal point of the subject. Try using Live View and zooming in on the image to assess sharpness.

How to set up your camera to shoot close-up photography: aperture

Aperture   f/11
For close-ups and macro images, set the aperture to f/11. For greater depth of field, use a smaller aperture such as f/16 or f/22.

Exposure mode   Manual
Shutter speed   Set according to light

ISO   100
Lens   50mm to 100mm macro

Drive mode   Self-timer

White balance   The preset to suit the light source

PAGE 1: Best camera settings for classic close-up photography
PAGE 2: Best camera settings for shallow depth of field close-up
PAGE 3: Best camera settings for shooting macro photography handheld

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