Friday, December 07, 2012

Thoughts on Macro work.

I came across my Osram work light. Thought I had lost it but it turned up where I had put it – in the wrong place – for safe keeping.
The batteries were still producing a bright light. Thought I would record how to use it.
When doing macro it is best to use manual focus setting the focus to the closest and then moving the camera forward to the subject if extreme close-up is being done.
With a 10 dioptre lens it is simple to get life size or even bigger.
However it can be hard to find the subject. The Osram LED work light costs about £14 [$18 to $20] and can give a spot light. 
I was lucky I bought mine in Lidl's superstore for about £6.  This can be seen pretty easily and shows on the camera viewfinder allowing the camera to centre onto the subject. And the flash overpowers the LED’s so it makes no difference to the set-up.

Simple macro shots can be made using AF Minolta lenses on Sony digital cameras. However make no mistake these lenses have markings on them for Macro. They are not true macro lenses but merely close-up. That is a different thing altogether.However consider this The lenses were made to cover a 24x36mm frame Now a cheap Fox dioptre lens set can be purchased for around £15 or $20.
As a digital image is for most cameras half-frame size you will only be using the centre of the dioptre lens ! 
The Fox set is 1, 2, 4, and 10 dioptres.
Using the 10 diotre with this lens set to macro I took an image of a very small Berberis flower. A flower perhaps 9 or 10 mm in size.
The lens was stopped down to almost its minimum

This was done using my PX360 flash mounted with an adaptor. Not Ideal because the light was not directed at enough of a downward angle.

Now look at the inflatable diffuser fitted to the PX360 The curve of the front allows a good portion of the light to be deflected downwards, and the area of the diffuser gives a more scattered illumination.
These can be bought from Hong Kong for £4 to £5 $6 to $8 It is one of the best diffusers I have ever used. When collapsed they will fit in a gadget bag taking little space.
It is easy to determine just what size the picture is. Take a pic of a mm ruler using the various set-ups. The life size will show 24mm. 2x will show 12. 3x will show 8 across the pic. Not exact but it will give a good approximation. 
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