Hi all. I thought i would share two setups that i use and the resulting photos.My first setup on top is a two light arrangement,that uses two manual units that fire full power each time. The other setup is a nikon ringflash that is ttl capable on film only. I basically did a test series at each magnification and fstop and then created a chart to use in the field. It may read at 1to2 use f16-22 etc.it is limited as far as choosing wider apertures but it is very repeatable. the two flashes give about 1 stop difference in output due to diffusers on the heads.the ringflash is great in the respect you can pick any aperture and ttl does the control.both give fairly good results that are predictable.The top monarch was ringflash,and the other was the two light setup.
<a href="http://www.pixentral.com/show.php?pic=1ONr3PAcm8mCsYb3J7EuR5406 3PG1" /></a>
<img src="http://www.pixentral.com/hosted/1ONr3PAcm8mCsYb3J7EuR54063PG1_th umb.jpg" border="0" />
<a href="http://www.pixentral.com/show.php?pic=1pat6WmaCpRUjw8YuSzOxl0kr JKHh5" /></a>
<img src="http://www.pixentral.com/hosted/1pat6WmaCpRUjw8YuSzOxl0krJKHh5_t humb.jpg" border="0" />
Ho,that bug is nice and sharp,and good exposure. the flash sync is the d70. i also concur with you on the diopters from nikon being good,but i understand canon has a gem as well. I said before i was all alone with this guy and his tripod had a label that said john shaw,i said why does your tripod have that on? and he said because thats me. he looked different than his book photo,but that was 10 years old.i did get my wife to get a shot of us together and he left me shoot his fuji 619 panorama for one roll. what a considerate man,and great photographer.
Cathleen, that plant shot is nice and has nice composition.i can only view the precrop,but i like it just the way i see it.
As a matter of fact he did give me the roll. i was all googly eyed to be all alone with someone i had always admired. just me and him at the pemaquid lighthouse in maine.
That bracket is from george lepp,and i tape all the wires down on it to prevent catching them on brush and such.i always thought the more sturdy and locked down you made it,the more repeatable your result would be. you are not always worrying if you bumped a unit or a cord was loose.
The ringlight is good to ,because you can vary the side to side output for lighting ratios. I tend to like soft,even light,but directional light has its advantages.
Gotta go do yardwork,talk to you later tonight hopefully.
DS, you are doing great with the setup you are using.you got great color there. i dont remember seeing those little feet sticking out on the front legs before in any ive shot. i might have to go back and look,thats intriguing.
Here is a shot i posted before in a different thread. it is a cecropia moth. the shot on the left is the caterpillar,before it transformed into the stunning moth on the right. it luckily took up residency in our trumpet vine and made its cocoon there.i happened to come out the very afternoon it emerged and had some time to shoot before it took flight. If anyone is interested, i have seen them on apple trees on many occasions,but cant guarantee that is a host plant. It is not super close, but was shot with a 105 micro,using a trpod and available light for both.
<a href="http://www.pixentral.com/show.php?pic=1nCUlAh0slAktC9YyIEzmPyPo 3B5D9" /></a>
<img src="http://www.pixentral.com/hosted/1nCUlAh0slAktC9YyIEzmPyPo3B5D9_t humb.jpg" border="0" />
Real before and after, Donald!
<br />Here's an up close and personal, maybe not real macro? Shame about the leaf in the foreground. It was taken by just holding the camera on the ground and hoping it was pointing in the right direction. And being ready to run. I'm new enough to this country that I don't know what bites and what doesn't.
<a href="http://www.pixentral.com/show.php?pic=1FV7Diy1xkxMJyxu3BpXBT6OO tt65q0" /></a>
<img src="http://www.pixentral.com/hosted/1FV7Diy1xkxMJyxu3BpXBT6OOtt65q0_ thumb.jpg" border="0" />
As far as I know most of the Australian lizards are pretty harmless. The snakes are another matter. Our common local snake (Adelaide) is the brown snake, highly venomous and prone to coming indoors (they found one in the outdoor toybox of the childcare centre my kids went to..). Luckily they aren't that common in suburbia, but the local vet thinks there is one around near here at the moment due to the number of cat fatalities he's seen in recent weeks.
Edit: I like the angle of the lizard photo - I think critters generally look better/more interesting if you can get the view from their eye level.
DS, great shot. And he even smiled and said cheese for you!
Donald--it looks like little ladybugs on the top part of the caterpillar. I wonder if it's some kind of built-in deterrent for birds or something? Like ladybugs don't taste good, so nature made them the same color? Beautiful color.
Oz--the leaf doesnt bother me so much. Great shot, too.
> As far as I know most of the Australian lizards are pretty harmless.
Well, I hope you're right. I shall trust your advice. (How to dispose of a forum host in one easy step.... - no, seriously, others have told me much the same and said this one is a blue tongued lizard, a favourite with small boys to be captured and kept in a cardboard box, poor thing).
Donald, I was a Londoner before I came here. You can tell by my accent. :)
Cathleen, thanks and that critter is very unique,although i am not much of a naturalist,so explaining them is beyond my scope.
Zog, you are one of several i have met here who has a great way of saying things. i wish i was as succinct at times. as far as being a ringer,i never had one photo class in my life,but do have a good deal of appreciation for nature and scenery.I shy away from being boastful,because there are far greater photographers around every bend.i used to even put myself down because i hated to appear better than anyone else. over the years i have come to realize,there is no need to be apologetic for your work. many people have enjoyed my work over the years and the thoughts they share with me have given me confidence in my vision.
OZPETER,i did detect a slight accent but always wondered. I have always wanted to shoot the cotswalds,but never made the trip. ever been there?
Here is a leaf shot i dug out. i used a 105 micro on a tripod.it was shot using fuji velvia,and a tiffen 812 warming filter. I spotted this in my front yard last fall, and was drawn to the similar color red in the leaf and the sedum [i think]. i used a set of gold reflectors to bounce light into shadows for fairly even lighting.
<a href="http://www.pixentral.com/show.php?pic=1TR08H2tGA5GyexwaqIWPG3j7 f4K" /></a>
<img src="http://www.pixentral.com/hosted/1TR08H2tGA5GyexwaqIWPG3j7f4K_thu mb.jpg" border="0" />
I thought it was a blue tongue, but the tip of the tongue looked pink so I didn't say anything! We have quite a large one living under our shed. I'm a Londoner too, but I've been here for twenty three years. Enough time to work out what's safe to prod and what isn't more or less!
Ho, i admit seeing a similarity. i wonder how much we all have in common in our vision,or if there is a subliminal memory of subjects that are recognized from seeing others work.I certainly never try to copy anyones shots, but i do know what i like when i see it and i guess it gets put in the memory bank to be drawn from in the future.
Anyone going to share more,other than me. I love to look at new shots.
Ho,i took it as such. that is a flower we had here in a hanging basket i think.lots of blooms i think,but cant remember the name.looks real close up. nice image
Sharon,thanks for posting,the only problem i would see is the out of focus highlights in the background.Sometimes a slight shift in angle is all you need,but if you dont have depth of field preview button,it is easy not to see those background details.
<br />Well, it's not a very good scan. The extreme crop reveals some posterization that's not as easy to spot in the full frame.
<a href="http://www.pixentral.com/show.php?pic=1gIqKxj0QdH15gMxBT7LtkMDM cuIfh1" /></a>
<img src="http://www.pixentral.com/hosted/1gIqKxj0QdH15gMxBT7LtkMDMcuIfh1_ thumb.jpg" border="0" />
<br />Not exactly a macro, but shot with the macro lens in available light.
<br />Oh, it's a Christmas cactus. :)
I think that is what i was picturing it to be. you must have had pretty calm conditions for it being that sharp in avail light. are you shooting film for these? i do see the posterization now you mention it. I was wondering,do you prefer the dark background in your shots?
Sometimes. The grasshopper background went black because of the fast shutter/small aperture I used (flash photo, of course). The background in this cactus shot was just muddy and distracting, so I blacked it out.
hakea flower 20D, 50mm f1.8 lens, +4 screw in close up lens, tripod, 380EX flash wearing an omnibounce to reduce the strength of the flash and allow me to take shots this close without blowing it out.
I tried them at different apertures - this one was f20 I think - too narrow, I'd have been better with a wider aperture to throw the background more out of focus (but the others I took were a lot wider and not enough of the flower was clear!).
I had to take it on the table rather than in situ as the lowest flower is about eight feet off the ground and I'd have needed a step ladder as well as a much taller tripod!
It's an Australian native - one of these scrubby little trees that produces totally inappropriate looking flowers - these are just such an odd shape - little sputniks about an inch an a half across (this one is not fully open yet - most of the little florets are still to uncurl)
Sharon, i meant the circular hotspots of light. i knew a very good photographer once who pointed that very thing out to me and i always try to avoid the breaks where the sky shows through.i am not trying to be critical of your shot,its just something to ponder. i like the background in the upper right,but those three white circles can draw your eye to them. you did a good job on the blurred background, i just wondered if a slight shift in angle might have given a smoother background.What i mentioned before sharon,was that if your camera does not have a depth of field preview button, you may not even be able to previsualize the background,because you cant see the working aperture before the shot is made,and that can be tricky to judge what the background will do. keep them coming
Susan, that is a nice close up,and the soft light looks great.What is the background? it looks like slate or something. i thought that flower was much larger than you said, when i first looked at it.
Finally got a moment, so here's one using a dioper and long zoom.
<a href="http://www.pixentral.com/show.php?pic=11D5CvdMxBuT4mUAxFpYQlLhd zeu0" /></a>
<img src="http://www.pixentral.com/hosted/11D5CvdMxBuT4mUAxFpYQlLhdzeu0_th umb.jpg" border="0" />
<br />Gator eye for Grass.
Zog,i am not sure what i am looking at and that is just fine.i did not understand the gator eye for grass term. did you do any post shot alterations.it almost looks like metal or something ,but im just guessing. cool shot and rich color.
Our friend Grasshopper had shot some alligator photos, and I teased her about getting a close-up of a gator eye. This is a beautiful little glass marble that I got at an Open Studios event.
<br />I did a good deal of work on the image, saturating color, opening shadows, defining edges, transforming my thumb out, rotating 180°.
<br />Here's a before for you.
<a href="http://www.pixentral.com/show.php?pic=1rptOn33Jj8yd1atYirq3Yor4 p0Wyt1" /></a>
<img src="http://www.pixentral.com/hosted/1rptOn33Jj8yd1atYirq3Yor4p0Wyt1_ thumb.jpg" border="0" />
<br />edit: I think I finally got it right
Not quite macro, but definitely closeup - the object is about an inch and a half tall - Canon G3, lit by slaved flash directly behind the object through the sheet of transluscent paper I was using as a backdrop.
A close up of a six inch tall glass sculpture (the artist responsible has a twenty foot tall fountain in the Adelaide Botanic gardens near the tropical house) Same camera, I think lit from the side by a desk lamp.
Regarding shooting glass objects. A fun trick is to use painted wood, foam core, etc., that you can cut a hole into just slightly smaller than the base of the glass object. Light it from underneath. If you have a tabletop set-up that is black you can get some interesting results.
You can experiment with diffusion materials over the hole, etc.
Zog, i never had any training and i am sure some would say, thats obvious. that is probobly why i get so caught up in that debate,because i know encouragement over the years has greatly boosted my self confidence.for some reason i cannot view pixentral right now to look at the photos.thanks for the sentiment
<br />Susan, that is impressive if that is a table.looked like forest to me.I also think you did a good job on the glass work.that cant be easy.
<br />Colorfulbird, those suggestions about shooting sound very helpful and if the need ever arises,i will try it.
<br />Here is some soap on a tennis racket frame i did years ago.it is an area of about4x5inches.i used to try crazy things,but i got to a point of saying whats the purpose? i guess nature just draws me more. the soap moves and bursts in short order,and then you redip the racket.
<a href="http://www.pixentral.com/show.php?pic=1LdXF1rj0RgVpthMkgnDUCvuL XHD" /></a>
<img src="http://www.pixentral.com/hosted/1LdXF1rj0RgVpthMkgnDUCvuLXHD_thu mb.jpg" border="0" />