Monday, June 22, 2009

Macro Monday

I would like to credit Georgia, who also wants to credit anyone else who thought of "Macro Monday," for my inspiration as I further develop this blog.

Doesn't it make sense - a photographer covering various aspects of photography? Macro Monday has a nice ring to it, and it also encompasses one of my favorite passions as a photographer. Shooting macro subjects.

Today I'll highlight the dandelion...though this is the "on steroids" version, called Goat's Beard. It's beautiful, and a lot easier to photograph than it's cousin, the common dandelion. It's yellow flower is also prettier, more like a star. You see it commonly along roadsides and in meadows.

Macro photography involves shooting close-up, and small. It's great fun to tromp through the yard, meadow, woods, beach, anywhere... looking for small and seemingly insignificant aspects of nature. I'll show you my set-up, and results, as I photographed the "blow balls" one late afternoon.

I use a Canon 30D and a 100mm macro lens, which allows me to get close, but not scare the little critters too much. I also use a Plamp, found here, and here, which is a nifty tool I can clamp to my tripod, or other solid surface, and attach the other end to the photo subject. This way I don't have to kill a wildflower by picking it. I can also keep a subject still, if there is a breeze that day.
I am looking down on the bloom here, and you can barely see the clip part of the Plamp, and the black, flexible tubing. Of course, you don't want this to show in your photo, so you shoot different angles in order to highlight your subject, yet not show your tools.

Here are my results, which I happen to be very excited about.

What do you think? Does anyone else have a trick of the trade they 'd like to share?


Char said...

OH! gorgeous - so gorgeous...and now I have to get the plamp that you're talking about! I didn't know about it. great tip!

your shots are just beautiful.

Kamana said...

love love love these!

Jen said...

I love macro photography, and I am thinking I am going to ask for a macro lens next year for Christmas!

Beautiful shots, I love the little mosaic display.

Wildflower Studio (Michelle Dransart) said...

Gorgeous mosaic! Wow! And I really appreciate all of the info! I learned so much! Thank you for sharing that. I don't have any techniques at this time, but if I come across any good ones I will pass it along. I had never heard of your tool before, so neat!
Have a beautiful week! PS. I never knew there were such large dandelions until seeing yours today :) Talk about BIG WISHES!

Sandy K. said...

Thank you, all. It was great how the light cooperated with my idea. The sun was hitting the puffs just right so I could capture that golden color. I'm thinking they'd make nice greeting cards, even as individual photos.

kendalee said...

Wow - incredible shots! Thank you for sharing these and your great tips. My macro technique involves getting really, really close to whatever I'm shooting, hoping my hands don't wobble too badly that day, and a lot of luck. But the difference clearly is in the results! I usually have to take at least three to get just one that I like.

georgia b. said...

gorgeous gorgeous gorgeous!!!

hey, thanks for the link. :)

i love how you share not just photos, but insight about techniques and equipment for photography. that's cool!

i love my litte point and shoot camera for macros. it is such an inexpensive camera, but it takes the best macro photography and it's is so easy to use for that—nice and tiny so i can physically get in really close to the subject. it's just easier than my bigger zoom camera—which also has a macro setting, but i can never seem to get it to work. i'll have to work on that and figure it out.

great post!

Beverly Ash Gilbert said...

Stunning! So ethereal...

Relyn said...

I do love macro photos. And, let me tell you, the macro button on my little Cannon Powershot is just not the same.

Douglas Bruton said...

Beautiful macro images... very well observed. I like how a different lens can make you see the world anew, like coming across things for the first time, all fresh and beautiful for being different from how one normally observes.

Thanks for these.


LifeIsArt said...

I love dandelions and these shots are fantastic. I must run out and get a macro lens!!!! LOVE THEM.

Claire said...

i added a macro lens to my wish list a few months back. i too love macro photography and your tips are invaluable.

i love love love the outcome.

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