10 Guides To Fascinating Macro Photography

Macro photography allows nature photographers to take close-up images that reveal incredible details the naked eye can’t see. With digital camera technology, it’s now even easier and less expensive to explore the genre. The following guides explain the gear needed and the technical aspects you’ll need to master, and may even provide some inspiration for beginners and seasoned macro photographers alike.

1. Macro Vision


Mastering the art of macro photography in nature takes time and patience, but knowing the when, where and how of the art will increase your chances of finding fascinating subjects and creating successful images. Read more …

2. By Nature’s Design


A combination of depth of field, great light and composition, camera position and the right settings will allow you to master macro photography. This guide offers some key tips for discovering details and patterns through close-up compositions. Read more …

3. Macro Field Studio


Want to create studio-quality macro images of wild subjects in their environments? This guide offers tips for building a macro field studio for photos on location. Read more …

4. Speaking For A Species


Photographer Clay Bolt had to step out of his comfort zone and into the world of filmmaking to help protect one of North America’s rarest bees. He and his team transformed a simple idea into an award-winning film that may have been just the right catalyst to make life better for one little bee in need of some serious help. This article shares some of the most important lessons he learned during production of the film. Read more …

5. New Ways To Think About Macro


Every lens you have has the potential to be a great one for close-up or macro work when you know their benefits and limits. So, to get a unique close-up perspective, think beyond the usual macro lens. Read more …


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6. Depth Of Field In Macro Photography


Depth of field in macro photography is especially important to ensure the details of your subject are sharp. These tips take a deeper look to help you get the best results. Read more …

7. Tack-Sharp Macro Photography Tips


This guide covers the tools you need to get close, and how to produce the sharpest images by utilizing proper focus, stability and depth of field. Read more …

8. Macro Flash Tips & Techniques


This guide is all about gear. Learn how to get complete creative control over your close-up photography with these versatile flash and mounting systems. Read more …

9. More Advice On Macro Flash


Many gorgeous images of macro subjects have been taken with available light. But as with many other subjects, a lot of factors must fall into place to create a successful natural-light photo. If you’re not happy with the available natural light, flash can be used as a fill light, main light or in tandem with multiple flashes to produce dramatic and pleasing results. Read more …

10. Some Macro Quick Tips


This guide covers the basics of capturing great macro shots. Try them out on your favorite subjects. Read more …


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Photo Of The Day By Burton Weiss

Today’s Photo Of The Day is “Keeping Traditions Alive” by Burton Weiss. Location: Li River, China.
Photo By Burton Weiss

Today’s Photo Of The Day is “Keeping Traditions Alive” by Burton Weiss. Location: Li River, China.

“Cormorant fisherman on Li River in China at sunrise,” describes Weiss. “As the fog lifts and a soft pink color dawns in the sky, a lone fisherman keeps this ancient traditional fishing method alive.”

Photo of the Day is chosen from various OP galleries, including Assignments, Galleries and the OP Contests. Assignments have weekly winners that are featured on the OP website homepage, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. To get your photos in the running, all you have to do is submit them.

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Stormscapes Assignment Winner Jeff Niederstadt

Congratulations to Jeff Niederstadt for winning the recent Stormscapes Assignment with the image, “This Ain’t Kansas.”
Photo By Jeff Niederstadt

Congratulations to Jeff Niederstadt for winning the recent Stormscapes Assignment with the image, “This Ain’t Kansas.”

“On April 15, 2016, a beautiful tornado formed near Eads, Colorado,” explains Niederstadt. “We were lucky enough to witness the entire life cycle of this tornado. The only way this chase could have been any better was if we were able to get closer.”

See more of Jeff Niederstadt’s photography on Facebook, Instagram, 5oopx, and Viewbug.

To purchase prints, go to https://1-jeff-niederstadt.pixels.com.

Need some photography inspiration? Check out our current assignment here.

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Knee Deep In Motion  

Knee Deep In Motion  

Motion occurs at many speeds, in many directions and with many variables. It can be constant, intermittent, fluid, repetitive, blindingly fast or barely discernible. Photographically, anything that moves opens many doors for the creative photographer. While many photographers try to freeze every aspect of movement, there are other ways to capture the essence of locomotion. To diversify your portfolio, it’s great to know how to capture motion in other forms.

Action subjects show fluid movement. By using a slow shutter speed, the movement paints the sensor with color, blurs, twirls, speed and grace. The photo takes on a special dynamic and becomes more of an artistic representation of the motion. Methods that illustrate this movement are panning, deliberate movement of the camera, zooming the lens or rotating the lens around its collar. Both the subject and its speed of movement dictate which technique works best. I encourage you to try them all on any moving subject. The more you make these types of photos, the more easily you’ll be able to predict the end result.

Knee Deep In Motion  

Try Something New: Zoom the lens to give a stationary subject movement. Motion can be implied when a subject is static if a lens is zoomed during the time the shutter is open. Experiment using varying shutter speeds from one half to four seconds. If you want the lines that show the zoom effect to be smooth, mount the camera on a tripod. If you want wiggly explosive lines, handhold the camera. I prefer the tripod-mounted result, but I have seen great results with wiggly lines. Start the zoom at the widest setting and zoom to the telephoto point. Try the opposite where you start at the telephoto setting and zoom to the wide—both work. Use a low ISO to obtain the necessary shutter speeds. If you want to use the technique during daylight hours, attach a neutral-density filter to be able to make longer exposures. Experiment with subjects of all kinds as anything is fair game.

Knee Deep In Motion  

Try Something Creative: Pan a wild animal—Panning is used to render a sharp subject against a blurred background. The effect is achieved when the photographer pans the camera with the subject across the film plane. If the pan is performed at the same speed at which the subject moves and no up and or down movement occurs, the subject will be sharp against a blurred background. The key is to track the subject with a smooth flowing motion. Use a tripod with a panning head. Keep it loose to make a fluid pan. Experiment using different shutter speeds. For instance, a car moving at 50mph vs. a goose in flight require different shutter speeds. Check the LCD after each image and adjust the shutter and pan speed to obtain the effect you desire. If the background remains too sharp, lower the shutter speed. If everything is a total blur, raise it.

Paint With Color: Subjects that are colorful and show a lot of movement are great for this technique. The idea is to mount the camera on a tripod, set a slow shutter speed and the movement of the subject paints the sensor with color. Good subjects are fields of flowers blowing in the wind, dancers in colorful costumes, autumn leaves dropping to the ground or any other colorful subject that moves while the camera remains stationary.

Knee Deep In Motion  

Try Something Traditional With A Twist: Pan but with a mid-speed shutter time—The technique is the same as above but differs in that faster shutter speeds are used to freeze action. Another key difference is the subject performs additional movement. Take, for instance, the flight of a sandhill crane. Not only does the bird move across the film plane, its wings also move up and down. In order to freeze this motion, a faster shutter speed is required. Another example is a sprinter. Not only does he/she move across the film plane, his/her arms sway and his/her legs move at high speeds. A bonus of photographing subjects like the bird or sprinter is the technique of slow pans can also be tried to create artistic renderings.

Visit www.russburdenphotography.com for information about his nature photography tours and safari to Tanzania.

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