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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Macro Talk 
Thread started 12 Jul 2005 (Tuesday) 13:21
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STICKY: How about all you "Macro Pros" giving some Tips?

 
jack ­ lumber
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Apr 08, 2006 15:40 |  #46

Hogster wrote


This trick was given to my by a 75 year old lady in my photo club. When working with insects, catch them first, put them into your refrigerator (don't get them mixed up with the leftovers) and the cool temperature will put them to sleep, take them out and place them on your selected scene, then you will have approximately 2 minuets to shoot before they wake up and hop away!
_______________
If you are handling butterflies or moths,use a pair of tweezers,NOT your fingers.
The oils in are skin can damage their wings.


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dpastern
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Apr 08, 2006 17:35 as a reply to  @ jack lumber's post |  #47
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jack lumber wrote:
Hogster wrote

This trick was given to my by a 75 year old lady in my photo club. When working with insects, catch them first, put them into your refrigerator (don't get them mixed up with the leftovers) and the cool temperature will put them to sleep, take them out and place them on your selected scene, then you will have approximately 2 minuets to shoot before they wake up and hop away!
_______________
If you are handling butterflies or moths,use a pair of tweezers,NOT your fingers.
The oils in are skin can damage their wings.

I'd never recommend doing this, the chances of killing your insect are high. As Arthur Morris (and countless others would say), you should never interfere with what you are trying to photograph. If you have to do that, you shouldn't take the image.

Dave


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Leorooster
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May 09, 2006 12:33 as a reply to  @ dpastern's post |  #48

dpastern wrote:
I'd never recommend doing this, the chances of killing your insect are high. As Arthur Morris (and countless others would say), you should never interfere with what you are trying to photograph. If you have to do that, you shouldn't take the image.

Dave

Agree 100%! If you need to do that to take good pics, then I think you probably need some more practice.


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Dalantech
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Jul 31, 2006 01:54 |  #49

I don't know about the "pro" part -and I'm sure many of you will question it after you learn how I shoot ;)

Since I want to use the flash for fill, and I frequently have to deal with a little wind, I set my camera to shutter priority 1/250 of a second (maximum normal flash sync speed for the 20D). I set my ISO to 200 (low noise and I gain a stop), and set the camera's exposure compensation to -2/3 (colors saturate and I don't have to worry about blowing the highlights). For the most part I don't care about the aperture since depth of field is going to be low no matter what Fstop I use. I set the flash (MT-24) anywhere from -2 to -3 depending on how reflective the subject is (about -2 for dragonflies, -3 for damselflies).

If I'm shooting a subject that's against a shallow background, or the light is very poor, then I'll go full manual F11 to F16, 1/250, and ISO 100 since I can use the flash to bring out the background.

I don't use a tripod -IMHO they are useless when I'm chasing a moving target, and a tripod can't stop the wind from moving the subject. So I either shoot hand held or with a BushHawk camera mount. The BushHawk helps me keep everything steady and offers about the same stability as a monopod -but much faster to recompose when the subject moves.

I don't allow myself to crop images -so I have to spend some time learning about my subject's behavior so I can get close. Here are some examples of what can be done with a little patience. All photos either hand held or with a BushHawk camera mount (no tripod). Minimal post processing and no cropping.

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IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
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IMAGE NOT FOUND
IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
HTTP response: 404 | MIME changed to 'text/html' | Byte size: ZERO


IMAGE NOT FOUND
IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
HTTP response: 404 | MIME changed to 'text/html' | Byte size: ZERO


IMAGE NOT FOUND
IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
HTTP response: 404 | MIME changed to 'text/html' | Byte size: ZERO

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dpastern
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Jul 31, 2006 02:06 |  #50
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Interesting technique Dalantech - sadly, for some insects cropping is a necessity if you want close up details (midges, springtails, etc). Depends on what you shoot.

Dave


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Dalantech
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Jul 31, 2006 02:27 as a reply to  @ dpastern's post |  #51

dpastern wrote:
Interesting technique Dalantech - sadly, for some insects cropping is a necessity if you want close up details (midges, springtails, etc). Depends on what you shoot.

Dave

True, but if I was shooting tiny subjects I'd by an MPE-65 macro lens ;)


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dpastern
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Jul 31, 2006 17:16 as a reply to  @ Dalantech's post |  #52
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Dalantech wrote:
True, but if I was shooting tiny subjects I'd by an MPE-65 macro lens ;)

Yes, I thought of that, sadly it's an expensive lens, and it's a very specialist lens, macro only 1-5x. If I was really good with macros and had the money, I'd consider it.

Dave


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Lester ­ Wareham
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Aug 31, 2006 10:17 |  #53

Correcting the Depth Map in CombineZ

Sometimes the depth map dithers about unnecessarily or creates duplicates of parts of the picture that have moved slightly. These issues can be corrected by the following procedure:

i) In CombineZ save the Depth Map [File->Export Depth Map] This is saved as a colour coded .BMP file.

ii) Open in you preferred image editor. Select the colour you want to paint (in CS2 use the Colour Sample Tool (Eyedropper icon) to set the foreground colour by clicking on the appropriate part of the map.) Then select a soft edge Brush Tool in Normal Mode with 100% Opacity and 100% Flow and paint in as required. Save the File.

iii) Return to CombineZ and load the Depth Map [File->Import Depth Map], a menu will ask you to select what channel colour to use, Green seems to work. Your stacked image will immediately be updated.


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LordV
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Sep 01, 2006 02:00 as a reply to  @ Lester Wareham's post |  #54

Lester Wareham wrote:
Correcting the Depth Map in CombineZ

Sometimes the depth map dithers about unnecessarily or creates duplicates of parts of the picture that have moved slightly. These issues can be corrected by the following procedure:

i) In CombineZ save the Depth Map [File->Export Depth Map] This is saved as a colour coded .BMP file.

ii) Open in you preferred image editor. Select the colour you want to paint (in CS2 use the Colour Sample Tool (Eyedropper icon) to set the foreground colour by clicking on the appropriate part of the map.) Then select a soft edge Brush Tool in Normal Mode with 100% Opacity and 100% Flow and paint in as required. Save the File.

iii) Return to CombineZ and load the Depth Map [File->Import Depth Map], a menu will ask you to select what channel colour to use, Green seems to work. Your stacked image will immediately be updated.

Thanks for the tip Lester- will have to look into this. Have to admit I've tended to stay away from delving in too deeply into combine z5- the only thing I've done so far is to rewrite an alternative main stacking macro to remove the high bypass filter.
Brian V.


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Action_Man
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Sep 08, 2006 12:28 as a reply to  @ LordV's post |  #55

What i have started using today is a sectional threaded pvc broom handle, the reason being is that it breaks down into around 10" sections and fits nicely into my pocket, and it only weighs a few ounces, and its around 12mm diameter.

I use much in the same way as Brian uses his garden pole but i wanted something that i could carry about and wouldent hinder me at all, and i dont think there is a similar type monopod on the market.

I only have four sections at the moment and will get some more soon, they only take a few seconds to assemble and you can use as many as you need dependant on what height the subject matter is :) .

OK you can start laughing now :D , but i must say it worked reasonably well in its first trial ...




  
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littlebug1979
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Oct 10, 2006 04:26 as a reply to  @ post 685893 |  #56

not sure if this is the right place but...im relativly new to the canon, but i have a rebel g2, and i want to get a macro lens does anyone have any suggestions as to what i should go with? i like bugs and plants and stuff, and im not sure what to get theres like a bjillion choices...




  
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Lester ­ Wareham
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Oct 10, 2006 05:56 |  #57

littlebug1979 wrote in post #2100431 (external link)
not sure if this is the right place but...im relativly new to the canon, but i have a rebel g2, and i want to get a macro lens does anyone have any suggestions as to what i should go with? i like bugs and plants and stuff, and im not sure what to get theres like a bjillion choices...

Probably not the best place. Try the EF and EF-S sections. Search first becuse the same question has been answered many times so you will find the past replies informative.


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littlebug1979
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Oct 10, 2006 06:09 |  #58

thanx ^_^ i learning quite a bit just browsing....




  
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dpastern
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Oct 10, 2006 18:45 |  #59
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I posted this on the FM forums a few days ago, thought I'd re-post it here in its entirety:

I also agree with the John Shaw book, it's excellent. I'll try and answer your questions as best as possible.

1. Yes, anything in photography can be expensive. You don't need a MPE-65. How did I know you shoot Canon? You mentioned 1.6x crop, Nikon cameras are 1.5 crops. Plus Nikon doesn't have anything that even remotely touches Canon's excellent MPE-65.

In all honesty, I wouldn't recommend this lens to a newbie. My suggestion is to go for one of these babies:

a. Sigma 105mm
b. Canon 100mm
c. Tamron 90mm

The Sigma most probably will be the cheapest of the 3, but don't let that you fool you, it's an excellent lens. I would recommend a dedicated lens as it'll go 1:1 (ie. life size) and it'll be razor sharp.

2. Yes, you can get these normal lenses that have 'macro' written on them. Beware: they're not true Macro lenses, they usuall only go down to around 0.3:1 (ie. about a third life size), if that. Optically quality is usually not on par with a dedicated macro lens. Sure, you can add dioptre lenses onto the front of these babies to get more magnification, but again, beware: you'll lose optical quality.

If you want to start out, you could try a 50mm lens with a set of extension tubes, they'll give you 1:1 or even more, but the working distance from the insect will be much closer than a dedicated macro lens. And furthermore, you can't easily change magnifcations on the fly like you can with a dedicated macro lens, but instead have to remove or add tubes. They usually come in a set of 3, something like 12mm, 24mm and 36mm or thereabouts. Optical quality is excellent, as there's no glass involved.

3. As a general rule, most dedicated macro lenses will be only 1:1. Tubes (as an example Kenko) with a 50mm will give you around 1.8:1. The maths when using tubes is usually:

length of tubes/focal length of primary lens

ie 68/50, which works out to about 1.4:1. From experience, I know that these equations are only rough, and that magnifcation is best worked out using a ruler, hence myself saying that instead of it being 1.4:1, it's actually around 1.8:1 or so. Take a shot of the rule, and work out how many mm fill the frame. As an example, with a 1.6 crop camera, the 30D, the sensor measures 22.5mm wide by 15mm high. If you photograph a ruler, if the entire image takes up 22.5 you're shooting at 1:1. If you're shooting at higher magnifications than 1:1, simply use this to determine magnification:

sensor width/ruler coverage

Of course, Canon's MPE-65 is a zoomable macro, going from 1:1 to 5:1. You don't need these ultra high magnifcations imho. I personally feel that they spoil macro photography, by removing the Insect or Arachnid from its surroundings. That's just a personal viewpoint, each to their own.

From 1:1 to 2:1 you can handheld, it does take a lot of practice, but it can be done. Higher magnifcations are much more difficult due to magnified camera shake and a much dimmer viewfinder image.

Oh, I forgot reversed lenses. It's quite common to use a reversed 50mm. You can either handhold the 50mm lens in front of the camera mount (not really recommended) or buy adaptors that allow you to mount it onto the camera mount. Ebay has lots of sellers selling them. You'll get reasonably good magnifcation and optical quality, the drawbacks will include vignetting in the corners, and complete loss of f stop control on the lens being reversed. Plus, the rear element of the lens is open to the elements. For these reasons, it's a good idea to buy an el cheapo 2nd hand 50mm - it doesn't matter what brand. Nikon f1.8 or Pentax SMC 1.8 50mm lenses are good options optically. You can also mount the reversed 50mm onto another lens using the same method of an adaptor to get more magnification, you'll experience some drop in optical quality.

There are also things such as bellows, that give you a working range of magnifications, but in all honesty they're more trouble than they're worth, and you'll almost certainly have to use a tripod.

In all honesty, go for something like a Sigma 105mm, you'll get 1:1, a good working distance (so as not to spook the insect or spider), and excellent optical quality, as well as the ability to change very easily your magnifications.

Hope this helps.

Dave


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Samdiver74
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Oct 20, 2006 14:15 |  #60

dpastern wrote in post #2103676 (external link)
If you photograph a ruler, if the entire image takes up 22.5 you're shooting at 1:1. If you're shooting at higher magnifications than 1:1, simply use this to determine magnification:

I have a 20D, with the 70mm-300mm Sigma DG lens set on Macro, I then grabbed the Canon FD 50mm f1.8 lens and placed it reversed on the front of my Sigma lens and I just tried the above technique, worked my focus manually.
I took two pictures of a stainless steel ruler, the first was set on 300mm and the resultant pic showed 4mm.
The second picture at the 200mm setting showed approx 5.5mm I think a little closer to 6mm

So What is the magnification ratio?
1st Picture
22.5mm (20D sensor size) divided by 4mm (number of mm showing in captured image) equals 5.625, so is that 5X magnification?
2nd Picture
22.5mm divided by 5.5mm equals 4.09, so is that 4X magnification?

if this is correct I think I am going to buy an adapter ring and do some experimenting.


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How about all you "Macro Pros" giving some Tips?
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