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Shallow Depth

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f6.3, ISO 200, 1/200sec flash used

This was a blooper shot in so much as (for some reason) I was on f6.3 (I never shoot there) rather than something more respectable like f8 or my more normal f13 for macro shooting. However the wider aperture has given me a very creamy background and with the lighting I feel its an interesting portrate of the butterfly.
I would be interested on the views of others on this shot - is the depth of field too small (tricky to say from this shot though I can say that eye is fully in focus!) - and does the overall shot work?

Taken in Wisly gardens butterfly display earlier this year

Camera:Canon EOS 400D
Lens:Sigma 150mm macro, 1.4 teleconverter
Recording media:RAW (digital)
Title:Shallow Depth
Username:Overread Overread
Uploaded:4 May 2009 - 6:11 PM
Tags:Close-up / macro, Wildlife / nature
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Comments

This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.
neonknight
neonknight  10 United Kingdom
4 May 2009 - 6:32 PM

Like it have something very similar to it somewhere on my p/f,John

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apierzchala
7 May 2009 - 7:47 PMConstructive Critique!This comment was flagged as constructive critique! 

Knowing how difficult it is to take shots like this, you have an excellent image - very eye-catching indeed! Since you have asked for critique.... the out-of-focus leg is rather distracting, probably more because it is very light coloured rather than because it is blurred. The lower foliage is a bit messy. But, as I say, I appreciate the difficulties you face and luck plays a part in micro-wildlife photography! What was your shooting distance from the butterfly (front of lens)? Rgds., Adam

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Overread
Overread  63917 forum posts England18 Constructive Critique Points
9 May 2009 - 12:06 AM

Thanks Adam, especaily the point about the leg brightness aspect - I recently came across some info about brightness in a shot and how it attracts the eye of the viewer (been watching Zack Aries crit videos on his website) though haven't really started applying that thinking to my current works. I might try darkening that leg a bit so that it no longer stands out as much.

As for the range and difficulty it was a little easier this shot since the butterflies were very docile (heck several were so sleepy they appeared dead) so getting close was not too tricky - the setup I had with the 150mm macro and 1.4TC as well as the larger non-native butterflies meant I could keep a decent distance back and I was not at the minimum focusing distance here - close to it, but not as close as fully possible. I can't recall the distance specificaly though

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