If you want some quick macro photography tips that will instantly improve your macro and close up shots you have found the right page. Below is a list of macro photography tips that will take your macro and close up photos to the next level.
1) Macro photography tips - use a macro lens
Number 1 on the list of easy macro photography tips is to use a dedicated macro lens.
There are various macro photography accessories you can use to capture macro and close up photos, such as close up filters, reversing rings and extension tubes but none of these will produce macro photos of the same quality as a dedicated macro lens will.
Macro lenses are available in various focal lengths including 60mm, 65mm, 100mm, 105mm and 180mm. The most suitable focal length depends on the subject, however the most versatile are 100mm macro lenses and these offer the best compromise between price and working distance.
2) Macro photography tips - use narrow apertures
Number 2 on the list of easy macro photography tips is to use narrow apertures.
The depth of field is exaggerated in close up and macro photography therefore shooting at wider apertures is likely to result in images that are too soft. If you are shooting super close shots you will need to use narrower apertures than if you are shooting close up images.
For example, if I am shooting an extreme close up of a flower I will use an aperture of f16 whereas if I am shooting a close up of a butterfly or a dragonfly on some vegetation an aperture of f8 or f11 often gives sufficient depth of field.
3) Macro photography tips - use a flash
Number 3 on the list of macro photography tips is to use a burst of artificial light, i.e. a flash.
Light is important in all photography genres however it is crucial when taking macro photos. When the lens is up close to the subject, as is the case with macro and close up shots, lighting is often a challenge because the ambient light levels are reduced.
With reduced light levels a burst of artificial light will help and a flash is recommended. When you use a flash you do need to be careful not to use too much flash, and balance the flash with the ambient light, and a flash with ETTL is ideal for this.
In my experience standard flash units are too powerful for macro photography, even when used at the lowest power setting, therefore I would recommend a ring flash for macro photography. As well as being lower powered ring flashes are attached to the end of the lens which prevents any shadows cast over the subject. Ring flashes are the way forward for macro photography, and you can also buy them with ETTL technology which is pretty cool.
Check out “What is the best macro flash?” for more info on macro flash.
4) Macro photography tips - shield the subject
Number 4 on the list of easy macro photography tips is to shield the subject from the elements.
We all know that depth of field is very slight in macro photography and the tiniest of subject
movement can result in a blurry mess. Consequently, the slightest breath of wind can cause real problems when taking macro photos.
Shielding the subject from the elements, wherever possible, will help to alleviate any issues. You can use many different things to shield a subject. For example, your hand may be all that is needed, alternatively you could use a reflector which has the added benefit of reflecting a bit more light on the subject You could also use a piece of card, your photography bag or anything else you can locate.
There may be some subjects, such as insects, where it is not possible to use a shield and in these situations all you can do is hope Mother Nature is on your side. If, however there is the chance to use a shield you would be wise to use one for a sharp shot.
5) Macro photography tips - shoot in burst mode
Number 5, and last on the list of easy macro photography tips is to shoot in burst mode.
Setting the camera in burst mode and firing off several shots in quick succession increases the chances of a sharp shot. If there Mother Nature is not on your side and there is a bit of wind and, hence subject movement, firing off several shots in quick succession will make sure you get at least one sharp shot.
Okay, you’re going to use a lot of memory with duplicate photos and you are going to have more photos to go through in the digital dark room, but it is better this and getting a sharp shot than not getting a useable shot at all isn’t it?
So there we have it, 5 easy macro photography tips that will help you capture stunning macro photos.
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