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Thread: How do you take good macro insects shots using Canon Pro 90IS ?

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    Default How do you take good insects macro shots using Canon Pro 90IS ?

    How do you take good insects macro shots using Canon Pro 90IS ?
    Many people ask me to write an article to describe how I manage to take nice insect shots. Here is it and I manage to find sometimes to write it. Forgive me for my poor English written.

    1. Macro Equipment

    2. Magnification
    So how much magnification does Canon Pro 90 IS and 500D/250D can take ?
    Here is the calculation :
    For 250D = ( Pro 90 IS 10x zoom focal length X 250D diopters ) / 1000 = ( 370mm x 4 )/1000 = 1.48 times magnification

    For 500D = ( Pro 90 IS 10x zoom focal length X 500D diopters ) / 1000 = ( 370mm x 3 )/1000 = 1.11 times magnification

    Why don't use HOYA or other cheap closeup filters ?
    The 250D/500D series incorporates double-element achromatic design for maximum optical performance and lesser distortion.



    3. Camera Settings
    Usually I will use the following 2 settings :

    Setting 1 ( for good lighting )
    • Mode : Apeture Priority (Av)
    • Focal Length = 200mm to 370mm
    • Av = f/8
    • IS = On
    • IS0 = 50
    • Focusing mode = Auto
    • Flash = *depend on situation
    • Flash head position = 0 or 75 degree

    * note : depend on the type of insect you are taking. Some insects are easily get overexposed when using flash and recommend not to use flash for such case.



    Setting 2 ( for poor lighting )
    • Mode : **Manual (M)
    • Focal Length = 200mm to 370mm
    • Av = f/8
    • Tv = 1/160 sec
    • IS = On
    • IS0 = 50
    • Focusing mode = Auto
    • Flash = On
    • Flash head position = 75 to 90 degree

    ** note : Please take precaution when using the Speedlite 420EX in Manual mode. The flash is in full blash and may cause harmful to the eyes if looking directly.

    You can see that both settings are using f/8. Why use f/8 and this cause my shutter speed very slow ?
    Using 500D/250D closeup lens, the Depth of field (DOF) is very shallow. To increase the DOF, the best value is using f/8 so that the object can get in focus.

    What is the use of IS ?
    Using IS turn on , you can forget about using a tripod.


    4. Camera Set-Up
    The setup is simple. Just use Canon Pro 90 IS + Canon Closeup Lens 250D/500D + Canon Speedlite 420EX + Sto-fen Omni-Bounce. Tilt the Speedlite 420EX flash head to according to the lighting condition (see 3. Camera Settings)



    5. Photo Taking Techniques
    This is the most interesting content where many people want to know. Basically it is simple. Just check for lighting condition and use the setting 1 and 2 accordingly.

    How to know what condition is poor lighting ?
    First , switch to the Av mode and set Av to f/8. Meter the place and check for the shutter speed. If the shutter speed is faster than 1/160sec , this mean the lighting condition is good. You can use the Setting 1.

    How to begin ?
    Once you have checked the lighting condition and use the setting given, you can are ready to take the insect shots. Due to my experience of using 250D, you need to know your minimium focusing distance which is 18.5cm. Just focus the object about 18.5 cm away and press shutter button, you can see that the camera will focus the object. Once the focus is locked, you can also do some minor focus by moving the Pro 90IS slightly in or out. Otherwise, click on the shutter button to take shot. Sometimes the backlite is too strong, it is recommend to use fill flash to brighten the object.

    Example :
    No fill flash : http://homex.coolconnect.com/member4...9-6918_img.htm
    With fill flash : http://homex.coolconnect.com/member4...9-6917_img.htm


    How about setting 2? How to take insect shots in low lighting ?
    Apply the setting 2. When using the Canon Pro 90 IS in Manual mode, you will find that the LCD lightup for a few second to allow you to focus the object. Using the same method as above, move to a distance of 18.5cm and you are able to take the insect shots. Remember to turn on the Speedlite 420EX. Sometimes the object may get overexposed due to the flash too strong. You can tilt the head to 90 degree or above to reduce the flash intensity.



    6. Composition Tips
    • Take side view of the insect
    • Take low angle - best is the same level as the insect
    • Make use the swivel LCD , you can compose the shot at any angle
    • Avoid / watch out for distracting background
    • Know the insect behavior well
    • apply the The Rule of Thirds
    • Wait for good lighting so tt the backgorund will look nicer

    7. My Photo Gallery
    Feel free to visit my insect gallery at http://www.photosig.com/photos.php?photographerId=3733
    Last edited by megaweb; 27th June 2002 at 08:11 AM.
    See my Photo Gallery at the Clubsnap

  2. #2
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    Excellent work!

  3. #3

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    Hee... finally the Kun(1) Chong(2) Mi(4) Ji(2) aka Insect Manual is out!

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the tips. Great job.

  5. #5

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    Thanks for the kindly comments


    for those who are using non-Pro 90 dc , u can try setting 1 method when there is good lighting ...

    for poor lighting condition , u need to have a flash tt can produce the warm light effect so tt the insects will look naturally sharp and detail ... give it a try
    See my Photo Gallery at the Clubsnap

  6. #6
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    I want to add in a few words that the f8 on pro90 is not equivalent to the f8 on a SLR/DSLR. The normal aperture setting for a 1:1 macro lens is f11-f16. F8 cannot provide enough DOF in many cases.

  7. #7
    Member Jer76's Avatar
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    megaweb.. so dat means the pics are taken with the 250D and with the pro90 at max telephoto izzit? or at any zoom range? thanks for the useful tips probably should invest in a 250D hehehe

  8. #8

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    Originally posted by Jer76
    megaweb.. so dat means the pics are taken with the 250D and with the pro90 at max telephoto izzit? or at any zoom range? thanks for the useful tips probably should invest in a 250D hehehe
    welcome It is good to have a 250D ...

    zoom range ? oredi state
    Focal Length = 200mm to 370mm (max)

    mean , the more zoom u use , the more magnification you will get ...but DOF will become more shallow ...
    See my Photo Gallery at the Clubsnap

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