Macro Photography Tips for Beginners

Meta Explains The Best Macro Photography and Close-Up Photography Tips For Beginner Photographers

How To Shoot Macro Photography for Beginner Photographers

Macro Photography Tips – In this section of Photography Tips and Techniques, Meta Explains The Best Macro Photography and Close-Up Photography Tips For Beginners.

Macro Photography and Close-Up Photography involves getting really close to an object, often only a few inches away, and shooting with a Minolta AF 100mm f/2.8 Macro Lens. You will soon discover, Macro Photography and Close-Up Photography isn’t easy to get in focus, but adding Extra Light is the key to getting a wider Depth of Field at a Smaller Aperture (More Subject In Focus).

Where To Buy The Best Macro Photography Books

Meta’s Best Macro Photography and Close-Up Photography Tips and Techniques

What’s The Best Macro Photography Setup?

How To Shoot The Best Macro Photography – Meta used her Minolta AF 100mm f/2.8 Macro Lens shoot this Bee’s Face (Photo: Left).

This Special Minolta Macro Lens can Zoom to 1:1 magnification.

Meta uses Manual Focus for all of her Macro Photography.

If you are serious about getting into Macro Photography or Close-Up Photography, look at buying a Dedicated Special Macro Lens, such as the Minolta AF 100mm f/2.8 Macro Lens. You won’t regret it!

Meta’s Best Macro Photography and Close-Up Photography Tips

Depth of Field Issues – Achieving a Wide Depth of Field (The Area of your Subject In Focus) is the biggest challenge in Macro Photography. You’ll need to stop down your Aperture to between f/16 to f/22 to Widen your Depth of Field. More light and a slower shutter speed will be required.

The Depth of Field reduces as your lens magnification increases towards 1:1 at f/22. Stopping down beyond f/22 to f/32 can result in a loss of sharpness resulting from diffraction blur caused by light reflecting off the aperture blades, and requires more sharpening in Post Production.

Lighting Issues – Shooting with a Very Small Aperture, like f/16 to f/22, will require More Light. Meta normally shoots at the Native ISO of her Sony Digital Camera, which is ISO 100, that produces the lowest noise image possible. Added light can be from a Reflector (Natural Sunlight is Always Best), a Diffused Flash Unit or from Bright LED Lights. Adding More Light will allow you to shoot at faster shutter speeds when shooting in Aperture Priority Mode. You can also back light a photo, like a flower.

Silver/Gold Reflector Disc – For Macro Photography, this ProMaster Compact 12” Reflector (Model #3822) can direct White or Gold Natural Sunlight onto your Macro Subject. The 12” disk can also be used as a small wind block. Folds up into a 5” compact pouch that fits into your pocket or can be stored in your camera bag.

Translucent Filter Disc – For Macro Photography, this ProMaster Compact 12” Translucent Disc (Model #4326) can be used to diffuse light and enhance details in bright areas for more dramatic photos, especially under direct sunlight. The Translucent Filter Disc is one of the most important Macro Photography Accessories, but often over looked. Folds up into a 5” compact pouch that fits into your pocket or can be stored in your camera bag.

Camo Bandana – For Macro Photography, Meta carries a 22”x22” Camo Bandana, which is a square of Mossy Oak Material to lay behind small flowers to hide the background. The Mossy Oak Pattern is full of natural looking browns, tans and greens.

Light Absorbing Black Velvet – For Macro Photography, Meta carries a 22”x22” piece of Light Absorbing Black Velvet to lay behind small flowers to black out the background. Use a black velvet material that doesn’t reflect light back into the lens.

PC Remote Control – This can be used to Tether the Sony Digital Camera to your iPhone, iPad or MacBook for Remote Control and Viewing. This can help when the Macro Subject is very low or hard to get close to.

Sony HVL-F45RM Flash Unit – Use a Top Mounted Controller Flash mounted on the Sony Digital Camera, with a Flash Diffuser.

Bright LED Lights – Use External LED Lights mounted on Mini Tripods for Macro Photography works well to Widen your Depth of Field at Smaller Apertures. Adding extra light also helps keep your ISO lower to avoid any added sensor noise.

The Focal Plane Mark – Φ – This circular mark with a vertical line through it is located on the back of your Camera (Photo: Left Highlighted in Yellow). The Φ mark indicates exactly where the sensor plane is located inside your Camera.

In Macro Photography, the Minimum Focus Distance (MFD) of a Macro Lens is measured from the Focal Plane Mark (FPM) to the Macro Subject. If you’re inside this area, you’re too close!

Focal Plane Example: On Meta’s Minolta AF 100mm f/2.8 Macro Lens, it has a Minimum Focus Distance of 35cm. This distance is measured from the Macro Subject to the Focal Plane Mark Φ and not from the Macro Subject to the End of the Lens.

View Meta’s Macro Photography Photos

Slik Pro DXS Tripod – This Short Sturdy Tripod has No Center Column, so it can lay flat on the ground. This Tripod is perfect for Low Level Macro Photography. Fits in Compact Tripod Bag. Use a Slik Ball Head with Round QR Plate. 5 Star Rated!

Slik Monopod – A Monopod is often easier to use on Remote Mountain Hiking Trails, and can also double as a hiking stick. This works where a tripod won’t fit into very tight situations. 4 Star Rated!

Special Macro Lens – A Special 1:1 Macro Lens is required for Macro Photography. Meta uses her Minolta AF 100mm f/2.8 Macro Lens for all of her Macro Photography and as a 100mm Prime Lens.

Meta’s Best Macro Photography Camera Settings

Camera: Sony a77 II Digital Camera
Macro Lens: Minolta AF 100mm f/2.8 Macro Lens
Camera Mode: Aperture Priority Mode
Tripod: Slik Pro DXS Tripod with a Ball Head with Round QR Plate
Triod Bag: Compact Tripod Bag
Focus: Manual Focus with Peaking Color Turned On
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/16 to f/22 (Widest Depth of Field)
Drive Mode: Continuous Shooting: Hi
Filter: CPL
Extra Lightning: Reflector, Diffused Flash Unit or Bright LED Lights

What’s Inside Meta’s Macro Photography Field Kit

Meta’s Macro Photography Field Kit attaches to the back of her Camera Bag. This Modular Configuration is used only for her Macro Photography and contains:
• 1 Small Pointed Scissors – To Trim Grass
• 4 Fine Mist Water Bottles – 2 Distilled Water and 2 50% Water / Vegetable Glycerin
• 1 Camo Bandana – For Nature Looking Blurred Backgrounds
• 1 Light Absorbing Cloth – Blacks Out Backgrounds
• 2 Bright LED Lights
• 2 Mini Tripods – Use as a Small Light Stands to Widen Depth of Field
• 1 ProMaster 12” Silver/Gold Reflector #3822 – Reflects Sunlight / Wind Block
• 1 ProMaster 12” Translucent Disc #4326 – Diffuses Light for Better Details and Colors

Photography TipsMeta’s Macro Kit contains 4 Fine Mist Water Bottles, 2 filled with Distilled Water and 2 filled with a 50% Water / Vegetable Glycerin Solution. A few fine mist sprays create that morning dew effect or to get one of those shots of a single dew drop reflecting the flowers behind it. Works well on spyder webs, flowers and leaves.

Meta Explains The Best Macro Photography Books

The Complete Guide to Macro and Close-Up Photography

The Complete Guide to Macro and Close-Up Photography

– Cyrill Harnischmacher

This book also offers insights about macro photo composition, discussing light, color, camera position, and focus. With more than 600 images and figures illustrating the various ways readers can document the world of the infinitesimal, this book is not only a technical guide, but also a source of inspiration giving readers ideas to run with and make their own. Finally, this book also includes do-it-yourself projects, offering solutions both for everyday shooting as well as for dealing with specific situations unique to macro photography and close-up photography. 5 Star Rated!
Close-Up and Macro Photography: Art and Techniques

Close-Up and Macro Photography: Art and Techniques

– John Humphrey

High magnification Photography or Macro Photography and Close-Up Photography is immensely exciting and rewarding. Through the close up lens, everyday objects produce striking images, and small creatures show amazing detail that usually goes unnoticed. 5 Star Rated!
Close-Up Photography in Nature

Close-Up Photography in Nature

– John and Barbara Gerlach

Capturing the grandeur of landscapes or mood of a certain natural light is challenging but often the simple details of a texture or color evade photographers most of all. Learn the tips and techniques necessary to successfully photograph the beauty all around you. 5 Star Rated!
Macro Photography

Macro Photography

– Alan L. Detrick

Macro Photography for Gardeners and Nature Lovers provides exactly the information that aspiring nature photographers, no matter their level of skill, need to take their nature photos to the next level. 5 Star Rated!
Extreme Macro

Extreme Macro – The Art of Patience

– John Kimbler

A tabletop book on above life size Macro Photography with tips and tricks on how to take the images. Included is the image that won the Digital Photographer Magazine’s Macro Photographer of the Year in 2009. Not Rated Yet.

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Boone NC Commercial Photographers
Boone NC Commercial Photographers

Photos By Meta

Boone NC Commercial Photographers
PO Box 1571
Blowing Rock, NC 28605
1-828-265-2730
Monday – Friday, 9 AM – 5 PM (Eastern)

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