Macro Photography Tips   Leave a comment

Macro photography opens up a whole new world in terms of viewing a subject from a different perspective. When one encounters the term macro photography, two things come to mind, insects and flowers, or both! Some people find macro shots of insects unappealing but this should not limit them from exploring this new world. Photos of small, everyday items can turn out quite different when shot up close. Here lies an endless source of creative opportunity, not to mention fun factor, for those adventurous enough to give macro photography a try.

What do you need for the shoot?

  • Camera: Thankfully, nowadays it is not that expensive to get into macro photography. Most compact cameras have a macro setting that allows you to take decent to fairly good macro photos. For DSLRs, the options are more varied. Some zoom lenses allow you to take macro shots to a certain extent. However, the best way to go is to use a dedicated macro lens. Macro lenses come with fixed focal lengths, from 50mm to 180mm. Choosing the right focal length depends on how close or how far you want to be from your subject. For example, if you’re shooting insects and don’t want to scare them away, choose a 100mm macro lens.
  • Tripod: The technique for macro photography is to reduce any form of motion blur; camera shake or subject movement. A good tripod that supports your camera’s weight will eliminate the blur from camera shake.
  • Flash: Since macro shots require small apertures, it will consequently require slower shutter speeds. Creative use of the flash will eliminate the motion blur produced by the subject.
  • Patience: Although not a piece of equipment, you will need some patience to shoot in macro.

The Basics

As previously mentioned, it is best to use small apertures to get finer details in a large depth-of-field. Setting the camera on aperture priority or manual should work nicely. The key to getting good macro shots is controlling the depth-of-field and focus. Use manual focus to bring out the fine details of the subject since auto focus tends to be inaccurate in close up shots like these.

Lighting may need to be controlled in macro shots, again due to the small aperture and long shutter speed. You might need to use a flash to supplement the lighting and freeze the subject in place. However, using flash close up tend to overexpose the shot. To avoid this, use flash diffusers, bounce flash, or reflectors to soften the light.

When composing your shot, try different angles. This may open up a different perspective of the subject and give you a better shot. Use a simple background to avoid distracting the viewer from the point of interest. Even though the background might be blurred, a high contrast background will add clutter to your overall image.

I hope the these tips help you get started in exploring the world of macro photography.

Good luck and have fun!


Posted October 13, 2011 by Alex in Photography

Tagged with , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: