The Complete Guide For Photographing Live Insects At Home

I started toying around with insect macro photography about 18 months ago. And to be honest, those first few months produced some amazingly bad photographs. But as scientists say, there is no such thing as a failed experiment – as long as it yields data. Well, I’ve managed to amass quite a lot of “data”. And I am grateful that I am able to share some of that knowledge with the DIY community.

As bad as they were, those first few macro shots opened my eyes to the amazing detail and intricacies that lay just beyond the capabilities of our vision. Watching the insects move through the viewfinder was – and still is – a fascinating experience. So, from my earliest attempts, I decided I was going to only shoot live insects.
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Photographer Rigs An iPhone 4 To Helium Balloons To Take HD Videos

Here is a nice concept to compete with Kite Arieal Photography, Helicopter rigged cameras and very long pole photography.

A bunch of curious DIYers at Los Angeles rigged an iPhone 4 to a set of helium balloons that helped it rise about 1000 feet and take 720p videos of Los Angeles.

The footage is displayed below, while it is not perfect, and kinda shaky, there is also a valuable BTS. Hit the Just for some behind the scenes and my notes of the video

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No Strobes, No Light Stands, No Modifiers, No Problem!

Kimberley - Fluorescent 3 (by Ragoem)They say that necessity is the mother of all invention. How will you go on lighting a shot when you have no strobes, no lightstands and no modifiers?

With fluorescents of course. waintaminute! Fluorescents? Aren’t those the things that make green harsh hideous light? Well depends. Netherlands photographer Ragoem Vakfotografie shows just what can be done with just a couple of those lengthy lights.

First thing first, you need to understand light a bit to work with light sabers like this. Light is harsh when it is far (and looks small) and softer when it is close (and looks big). So fluorescents had t be placed close to the model. Placed? Try hand held. [Read more...]

Wireless Tethering – Shoot Tethered… Wirelessly

Wireless Tether Device (by .Jazz)I know it sounds like an oxymoron, however, this is one of the best examples of hack’n mod beating the cr*p out of store bought solutions.

Canberra Australia based photographer Jamie Carl, rigged together a great system that will wireless your USB setup (can you use wireless as a verb? not sure). This is so trivial that it just shouts, Why didn’t I do this before.

Jamie says this setup helped hum nail a difficult car-rigged setup where he did not know how fast the car will be going, and as a result did not know what shutter speed to use for good motion blur on the road, but no camera blur on the car. Using a wireless USB Carl was able to sit shotgun and adjust the settings on the go. [Read more...]

32 Free Software Solutions For Photographers

Me... inside my Mac. (by speedesign)A while back I was contracted by Francois Auradon, he asked me if there is a frugal photographers SW list somewhere on the site.

That was a good point as software can sometimes be a big expense. Gladly Francois picked the glove up and started the ball rolling list going. This list is only the beginning, with your help it can expand to include more stuff to make photographers lives easier. if you know iof a good piece of photography software, hit us in the comments.

So here goes 32 pieces of software for the frugal photographer:

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Lighting Modifiers Cheat Sheet Card

Lighting Modifiers Cheat SheetSo we had a Portrait Lighting Cheat Sheet that was designed to help placing the light in space around the model. While I called it portrait lighting cheat sheet card, I was only telling half of the truth.

The half that I did not include in that card was how different modifiers will change the light falling on your subject.

It is time to correct this wrong, so this lighting modifiers cheat sheet completes this gap.

There are some new things on this sheet, like a perfectly still model, dark walls to control reflections and a few beers that you can not spot in the actual card. But they were there. Trust me.

Lighting Modifiers Cheat Sheet (by udijw)
You can download a “super size” here.

Again, we tried to keep it simple. We usually ask a wife or a boss to model for those kinda things, but since the differences between the modifiers can be subtle we wanted to keep everything constant but the light. So… We asked Lady Plastic to come to our aid on this one. She kindly agreed or at least did not mind. [Read more...]

Poll: Are You An Available Light Or a Strobist Kinda Shooter?

'Sun' By Flower (by AF-Photography)This poll is another step in my journey to know you better. This time I am asking a simple question: do you use artificial lights?

On the red corner we have your typical Strobist, light commands the hand motions, just like the apprentice in Walt Disney’s Fantasia.

On the blue corner we have the naturalist, packs light (no pan intended) and uses the elements (or other available light) as shaping tools.

And of course everything in between – this is why we have other.

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Using Dry Ice For Adding Drama To Your Pictures

Using Dry Ice For Adding Drama To Your PicturesThe following post about working with dry ice was made by Morgana Creely.

Working with dry ice can be a lot of fun and certainly adds a dramatic flair to your images. However there are a couple of things you need to keep in mind.

Dry Ice is extremely cold [-78.5°C/-109.3°F] and needs to be handled with care at all times. To avoid burns, keep it away from the skin at all times, and wear heavy gloves where possible.

It’s also important that when using dry ice you are in a well-ventilated area. Dry ice is a form of carbon dioxide and use in a poorly ventilated area will cause headaches and nausea. [Read more...]

Poll: You Have Gear?

motion gears -team force (by ralphbijker)It is time ofr another poll here at DIYP. Since we discuss gear alot ont he blog, I thought it will be interesting to see what is the relations between DIYP readers and their gear.

Personally I am a little GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome) affected, however, with all the small tricks on the site that enable you to hack and mod even if you have little gear, I am sure we will see interesting results.

I am using twpoll for this for the first time, feel free to answer via twitter, facebook or right here on the blog. Would be grateful for retweeting this poll.

(RSS readers, click through to cast your vote) [Read more...]