I like experimenting with different setups, especially for wide angle close-ups. Last year, I took my wife’s Sony A7 for a couple of field trips and paired it with the Voigtländer Super Wide-Heliar 15mm f/4.5 with extension tubes for some wide angle macro photography, and the results were pretty cool! Compared to my usual DSLR setup, the lens was much smaller, allowing me to approach subjects from more compelling angles.
Last year, Olympus Singapore loaned me a pre-launch unit of their new STF-8 Twin Macro Flash, together with their OMD-EM1 Mk1 and M.Zuiko Digital ED 60mm f/2.8 Macro for a test-run in the field. I’ve had the set for about a week — it was easy to use and the results were pretty good, although it took some time for me to get used to focusing using the LCD.
This review is grossly overdue, but I’m posting it because I had been receiving questions on macro photography performance on micro four-third systems. This not a technical review. Instead, I will explain its pros and cons, as well as simple steps to maximise its capabilities.
The world of macro photograph is one that can absorb a photographer completely. You start off simple, perhaps with a reversing ring photographing small things around the house. Then you find a bug or two, buy a macro ringflash. Perhaps a speedlight or two, small reflectors and maybe even a softbox. But there’s only so much you can shoot at home on the kitchen table.
Getting out on location to shoot macro can be great fun. But the issues dealing with tripods or hand holding available light shots can be a pain. The typical go-to is the ringflash mentioned earlier. But there are some tricks to taking your tabletop studio out on location. In this pair of videso, Paul Morgan from Wex walks us through his mobile macro studio, and how he uses it on location.
If you’d like to explore macro photography and you’re not willing to invest thousands of dollars in professional macro lenses, photographer Adam Kappa has quite an affordable solution. He shares the setup he uses for macro photography which all of us can use with minimum investment. It involves a kit lens, a cheap external flash, macro tubes and a DIY diffuser. So, with less than $100 of additional gear and some DIY magic, he achieves really great results. Take a look.
There are plenty of ways to take photos of snowflakes. Some are complicated, some are simple, and some are DIY to the max. Photographer Chrissy Kerkhof shared with us a very simple setting she used to take clear and crisp snowflake photos. It takes only one additional piece of gear to the lens and the camera.
Weddings happen in a whole variety of different locations. Not all of them are as pretty as others. Sure, it’s nice to be shooting in a glorious venue, but sometimes you’re stuck in a boring grey room. This can make things tricky for shooting detail shots like the wedding rings. But there are ways to get pretty fantastic ring shots, even in the dullest of environments.
Texas based wedding photographer Ammar Selo has solved the problem of dull venues by bringing his own set and props. With them, he can create beautifully coloured backgrounds, and a much more pleasing result. When we saw his work come past our screens, DIYP decided to get in touch with Ammar to find out how he does it.
The team at Beauty of Science see the world a little differently to most of us. While we’re far too busy looking with our eyes, they’re seeing through microscopes and macro lenses. So many things happen on the small scale that we simply can’t see. Things we’d never even know about unless we went specifically looking for them, or somebody showed us to them.
And showing them to us is exactly where Beauty of Science excel. To round off their 2016 they’ve released the short film, Seasons – In a Small World. It shows incredible beauty found in the extremely small. Sights we’d not otherwise be able to see, and as the name suggests, it covers the four seasons found throughout the year. The colours, pace, timing, and action goes extremely well, set to the Strauss’ The Blue Danube.
If you are into macro photography, you probably already have a macro lens. Or three. And in this case you know how much they cost. If you are just getting interested in macro, there my be a better option than macro lens – at least price-wise.
If you shoot macro, there are several options: buying extension tubes, reverse rings, or a macro lens. The first two solutions are cheap, but don’t always give the results you want. On the other hand, macro lenses are quite expensive. But ZY Optics has launched Super Macro 20mm f/2 4.5x, a lens that takes the best from both worlds. It’s both affordable and gives very good results.
With travel photography, one of the issues is prioritising equipment. You simply can’t carry everything you could possibly want to bring. If you do then it often hampers the overall travel experience as you’re weighed down by equipment and have to constantly look after it. For me, on my current trip that meant I couldn’t justify bringing a dedicated macro lens, especially when I had the XF56mm and XF50-140mm covering the similar focal lengths offered by the two available macro options. Instead I chose to pack both the 11mm and 16mm extension tubes (MCEX-11 and MCEX-16, about $90 each). Offering camera-lens communication that allows autofocus, these simple compact devices can turn nearly any lens into a macro option (but please check lens compatibility).