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Thread: How to take good insect macro shots ?

  1. #1

    Default How to take good insect macro shots ?

    Discussion start here .....

    Originally posted by mpenza
    just wondering, for the pics, do you shoot with the flash straight on or at an angle?
    When using M mode , the dc is not able to control the flash intensity ( full blast ) and will overexposed the object easily. Therefore I use a Omni Bounce and tilt the flashlite head to the 60 or 90 degree (almost facing the sky) to light up a bit to the object as well as the environment.

    Why use M mode ... when taking insects in low lighting environment , you cannot achieve enuff shutter speed. By using M mode , you can set the desire shutter speed ( like 1/200 sec ).
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  2. #2
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    mind if I post a few of the more frequently asked questions and let the king answer?

    1. my camera already has a macro mode, how does close-up lens/filter help?

    2. will 3x zoom (~105mm) and close-up filter/lens combi be sufficient to take shots similar to megaweb's?
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    Originally posted by mpenza

    2. will 3x zoom (~105mm) and close-up filter/lens combi be sufficient to take shots similar to megaweb's?
    i think it will be quite difficult....a lot will depends on the photographer....megaweb is the king of insects...that's why all the insects will pose for him

    hehe...

    mega, any more tips to share? do u use tripod to take insect's photo? how do u select a proper aperture so that the whole object can be focus properly? last time when i shoot dragonflies, i found that the corner of the wings are blurred
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  4. #4

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    Originally posted by mpenza
    mind if I post a few of the more frequently asked questions and let the king answer?

    1. my camera already has a macro mode, how does close-up lens/filter help?

    2. will 3x zoom (~105mm) and close-up filter/lens combi be sufficient to take shots similar to megaweb's?
    1. A close-up filter does not help to magnify ur object shot ... it allows your dc to focus closer , thus make your min. focusing distance nearer ... so your object look bigger.

    I am not sure of a close-up lens , but I do believe that it helps to reduce your min. distance as well as give some magnification ...


    2. Yes you can.
    - stack filters but you will get closer distance as well as degraded result
    - use HOYA +10 macro filter , min. focusing distance is reduced
    - use double element closeup lens like Nikon/Canon closeup lens , min. focusing distance is reduced
    - use reverse 35mm lens like 50mm , min. focusing distance is reduced

    so for of 3x zoom , your min distance is very near if you boost the magnification
    Last edited by megaweb; 29th April 2002 at 02:46 PM.
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  5. #5

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    Originally posted by kamwai


    i think it will be quite difficult....a lot will depends on the photographer....megaweb is the king of insects...that's why all the insects will pose for him

    hehe...

    mega, any more tips to share? do u use tripod to take insect's photo? how do u select a proper aperture so that the whole object can be focus properly? last time when i shoot dragonflies, i found that the corner of the wings are blurred
    no lah ... just tt i have spent more time on experiment my dc ... .

    my tips <-- may not be good

    1. Under Bright Lighting
    - use Av mode with smallest value of f (f/8)... if the shutter speed allow you to hand held ( e.g. if u r using 200mm , the shutter speed is faster than 1/200 sec ) . Use fill flash to light up the object if the object is not sensitive to light.


    2. Under Poor Lighting
    - use M mode and external flash with bounce ( recommend to use Omni-bounce ). Force the shutter speed to desire settings ( e.g. if u r using 200mm , the shutter speed should set to 1/200 sec ) like 1/200 sec and f/8 . Tilt the flashlite head to 60/90 degree .

    If your DOF is too shallow (not able to focus the whole insects ) , reduce the focal length of the dc ..... FYI , I do not use tripod to take insect shots
    Last edited by megaweb; 29th April 2002 at 03:19 PM.
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  6. #6

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    I still dun get it....

    I think need to see actual demonstrations...

    Right now the cp885 got focusing distance of 4cm for wide angle.....so if i use a +10 filter....wat will happen? I need to go nearer to the insect? Or i can stay further away but get closer shot of insect?
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  7. #7

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    Originally posted by sbs99
    I still dun get it....

    I think need to see actual demonstrations...

    Right now the cp885 got focusing distance of 4cm for wide angle.....so if i use a +10 filter....wat will happen? I need to go nearer to the insect? Or i can stay further away but get closer shot of insect?
    if your min. focusing distance is 4cm .. u do not need any closeup filter ...


    the closeup filter is usually used when you use zoom + macro mode where ur min. focusing distance is far like > 12 cm ....
    Last edited by megaweb; 29th April 2002 at 03:18 PM.
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    Originally posted by sbs99
    Right now the cp885 got focusing distance of 4cm for wide angle.....so if i use a +10 filter....wat will happen? I need to go nearer to the insect? Or i can stay further away but get closer shot of insect?
    perhaps an illustration could help.

    my camera has a min focussing distance of 1 cm at wide-angle under macro mode. however, the max zoom under macro mode is only 1.6x. this is good enough for taking pics of flowers and other still objects.

    But if I were to take pics of bees and other insects, I need/want to be further away. 1.6x zoom is not enough to have a good composition. If I were to use normal focussing mode, I could use the full 8x zoom but I have to be even further away (0.8 to 1 m).

    This is where a close-up lens/filter helps. A +4 enables me to focus at around 25cm at full 8x zoom under normal focussing mode.
    Last edited by mpenza; 29th April 2002 at 03:16 PM.
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  9. #9
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    Originally posted by sbs99
    I still dun get it....

    I think need to see actual demonstrations...

    Right now the cp885 got focusing distance of 4cm for wide angle.....so if i use a +10 filter....wat will happen? I need to go nearer to the insect? Or i can stay further away but get closer shot of insect?
    For your case, if you already can use the full 3x optical zoom under macro mode, the close-up filter will allow you to get even closer.
    Check out my wildlife pics at www.instagram.com/conrad_nature

  10. #10

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    Originally posted by mpenza

    1. my camera already has a macro mode, how does close-up lens/filter help?

    Just a share a bit regarding mpenza's 1st qn. I realised that having macro mode on does not help in anything (at least for my C700). Example, when using the +4 close-up filter with 10x zoom, the magnification factor and focusing distance is the same whether the macro mode is on or off.

  11. #11
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    This is certainly an interesting topic as everyone else wanna take good macro photos as what Megaweb does. So do I

    My personal observation and experience here:

    1. We need suitable equipment to do certain macro photography, e.g. insect shots. Normal macro function in most DCs may not be good enough. U need to add some filters or use a macro lens (in the SLR case) to be really close to your subjects;

    2. I found flash could be a problem in getting natual colors. Most of us dont have dedicated macro flash gun. Consequently the results turn out to be more or less unnatually washed out. The best is to shoot under the red hot SUN, which is a big bulb lighting up both your subjects and u. Meanwhile, better light condition means higher F value or adequate DOF.

    3. Shaky hand could result in blur pics. I havent figured out how to overcome this problem yet. In the case of shooting insects, it wont be possible to use tripod shooting from 1m away. Dont know whether a monopod can help. Will try it next time. (Who can lend me a monopod for trying, ah??? )

    4. Need practice. So what r u waiting for? Go down and get your own hands dirty...

  12. #12

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    I think i still need live demonstrations...hur hur hur *spastic*
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