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The Macro Lens Photography Thread - Page 2

post #11 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by robchaos View Post
Lately I've seen a few people expressing interest in Macro Photography (myself included), so I would like to create this thread as a section for anyone who is interested in macro photography to give and get advice and share/rate photos and techniques.

The only rule I think we need for this thread is Please only post up user created content here. If it relates to macro photography post it up!


I am new to Macro photography, having just recently purchased a Tamron 90mm f2.8 macro lens.

Obviously, I am looking for tips and advice as it is hard to get good sharp shots when first starting out, and I haven't had much opportunity to play around with my lens since I've gotten it.
What ISO settings does everyone use for regular lighting conditions? I find that with lower ISO (100 or 200) I still have to either up the exposure compensation or lower shutter speed as it seems to come out under exposed in normal lighting conditions.
Also what are some tricks for getting steady sharp shots on the fly (as in without a tripod)? Generally since you need to use a higher aperture for insect shots to get a desirable DOF, how do you steady yourself enough with the lower shutter speed so the image does not have motion blur from you shaking? I know the proper way to hold my arms and camera but still seem to have trouble with this. I guess I am just a shaky guy...




Now some observations from playing around today, how depth of field affects photo sharpness. These were taken with a tripod.


Do not rate these photos on composition, as I was just playing around to understand the relationship between DOF and image quality, not looking to score artistic points.



Hopefully as I get out and play around with this lens more, I will be showing marked improvements in technique and composition. Now post up with your own macro stuff!

When shooting 1:1 (or greater) with a macro lens, the DOF becomes ultra small at that distance, so it becomes necessary to use very narrow apertures, as shooting wide open will always produce not enough in-focus portions. Diffraction isn't as much of an issue with macro lenses, so it's not uncommon to see macro images shot at f/16 and up. Macro lenses have to be very sharp for narrower apertures and usually have very good bokeh, since there are a lot of OOF parts in macro shots. And MF is the best approach to macro shooting IMO.

Some get around the DOF issue by focus stacking (Zerene Stacker is one such program that I know of), but it's difficult to get good results in my experience.

And keep in mind to that longer focal length macro lenses will be harder to hand hold, so very good lighting or support becomes necessary.
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post #12 of 37
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shane1244 View Post
The first shot was at f/9, and the second was t f/3.5. Not wide open.


Whoops. Exif Ftw. I uploaded the wrong pictures, but either way still a example of aperture affecting dof. However the 3.5 aperture IS wide open, as you change focal length the effective aperture does change.
Edited by robchaos - 5/6/11 at 11:21am
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post #13 of 37
I thought the focal length was fixed at 90mm? How does the aperture change then?
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post #14 of 37
Thread Starter 
the zoom itself does not change, but changing the focus changes how close of far you need to be from your subject to get sharp focus. The camera body will determine the optimal effective aperture for the focal distance you are at and it is not always the smallest. As you get closer you can use smaller aperture numbers though.
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post #15 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by robchaos View Post
Whoops. Exif Ftw. I uploaded the wrong pictures, but either way still a example of aperture affecting dof. However the 3.5 aperture IS wide open, as you change focal length the effective aperture does change.
...isn't the lens a prime?
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post #16 of 37
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shane1244 View Post
...isn't the lens a prime?
It is. I am not good at words and explaining. The focal length would be different from zoom factor. Focal length is just how far from the subject the lens can focus. The lens is a 90mm fixed zoom, but as you rotate the focus ring, the effective focus changes, meaning as I change focus I either have to compose myself closer to or farther from the subject to maintain the sharp focus. The lens is computer controlled to work with the camera body to determine what is known as effective aperture to maintain appropriate focus and metering.
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post #17 of 37
So you shot in Auto?
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post #18 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by robchaos View Post
It is. I am not good at words and explaining. The focal length would be different from zoom factor. Focal length is just how far from the subject the lens can focus. The lens is a 90mm fixed zoom, but as you rotate the focus ring, the effective focus changes, meaning as I change focus I either have to compose myself closer to or farther from the subject to maintain the sharp focus. The lens is computer controlled to work with the camera body to determine what is known as effective aperture to maintain appropriate focus and metering.
Variable apertures are usually mechanical. It'll change even when not connected to the camera.

Although I was not aware that macro lenses stopped down when focusing close.
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post #19 of 37
Thread Starter 
Yes, it is effective aperture though. Focusing in close equates to less light spread over the image sensor. Focusing in at 1:1 equates to losing 2 stops. The computer controlled lens works out and reports the change for you for metering purposes.
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post #20 of 37
Thread Starter 
One Macro shot and one portrait shot, both taken with my new Tamron Lens.


For the flower I forgot to turn my ISO down so it was a little noisier than I wanted (at iso 400)







Tomorrow (weather permitting) I plan on playing around with the lens a bit.
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