asdf

    Macro nature photography: tips for taking pin-sharp close-ups of flowers and insects

    | Macro | Photography Tips | 16/08/2013 00:01am
    0 Comments

    Final macro nature photography advice from our professional photographer

    Final macro nature photography advice from our professional photographer: devil's in the details Final macro nature photography advice from our professional photographer: devil's in the details

    Devil’s in the detail
    Ross says… The wonderful thing about macro photography is that it reveals things that we just don’t notice with the naked eye. But it can also reveal defects, which are only noticeable once you have taken a picture.

    It is for this reason that you have to be really fussy when finding the right flower to photograph, so you have a pristine specimen. Watch out for obstructions and distractions as you review your pictures too.

    This pair of Jan’s pictures go to prove what an improvement you can make when you ensure that a blade of grass is not obscuring the wing of the butterfly!

    The shades…
    When you’re shooting macros, it’s unlikely that your shadow will fall into the tiny area of the shot. Still, be aware of where it’s falling.

     

    Final macro nature photography advice from our professional photographer: shoot flat surfaces face-on

    Shoot parallel to flat subjects
    You have no excuse but to get the whole surface sharp when shooting a flat subject like a gravestone. It is simply a matter of making absolutely sure that the camera is completly parallel with the stone.

    Looking for the angle
    Don’t bring in the support too soon… look for the right shooting position before setting up your tripod.

    Keep on shooting
    Once you have a butterfly framed up, don’t just take a single shot, take several. One will always be sharper than the rest.

    How to get a clutter-free background
    The background is just as important as the specimen itself, if you want perfect close-ups. These are just some of the tricks that Ross uses to ensure that he gets perfectly-composed studies with no out-of-focus distractions.

    Final macro nature photography advice from our professional photographer: get a clutter-free background Final macro nature photography advice from our professional photographer: get a clutter-free background

    Look for a specimen that gives you a really clean background with no competing tones – you are ideally looking for a background that is some way behind the specimen.

    You should use the widest aperture you can sensibly get away with, but even then just because the background is well out of focus, it doesn’t mean that it is not a big distraction. These two shots taken by Jan were both taken at f/3.2, but the second one definitely works much better compositionally than the first.

    Look for flowers along the sides of rivers; you can often frame them against the dark bank on the distant side of the water.

    Use a reflector to brighten up the flower, so that it stands out better against the comparatively darker background.

    The sharper the subject is, the better it stands out. I recommend taking between five to ten shots, as one will always be noticeably sharper than others.

    If all else fails, add your own backdrop. For these shots of  a bluebell (Hyacinthoides non-scripta), I held a black reflector cover behind the bloom while I provided fill-in with a smaller silver pop-up reflector.

    PAGE 1: Meet our professional photographer and apprentice
    PAGE 2: Macro nature photography tips for planning your shoot
    PAGE 3: Final macro nature photography advice from our professional photographer
    PAGE 4: Our professional photographer’s recommended gear
    PAGE 5: Shot of the Day

    READ MORE

    Free macro photography cheat sheet
    DIY Photography Hacks: make a light tent from 3-ring binders to diffuse sunlight
    How to use an iPad or laptop as a light source for portraits, still lifes and more
    Extension tubes: how to shoot extreme close-ups without spending a fortune


    Posted on Friday, August 16th, 2013 at 12:01 am under Macro, Photography Tips.

    Tags: ,

    Share This Page

    sssss