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Purple Macro

By markst33    
Not something I have done much of in the past but I thought I give Macro Photography with focus shift a go.

So I made up a light hack for macro photography which involves cutting out a section in the side of a pringle tube to fit my flash head into. This allows me to direct soft reflected diffused light onto my subject as the end of the tube reaches to the end of the lens I use (Tamron 90mm f2.8)

The difficult part is that my Tamron does not AF on my Nikon Z6 so its all manual focus and its very tricky to see whether I have the focus pin sharp all the time as my eyes are not getting any younger. You can see that there are soft areas within the image, however I think that this somehow helps the image as the eye is drawn to the sharper areas and helps provide contrast.

Anyway as usual all constructive C&C's most welcome.


ISO - 100
Flash mounted on camera

Tags: Nikon Flowers and plants Close-up and macro Purple flower Macro flower Tamron 90mm Violet flower

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markst33 13 78 2 Ireland
12 May 2019 8:51PM
I have added a pic of my pringles light hack in the Modifications section in case anyone wants to have a go.
Niknut Plus
12 3.5k 82 United Kingdom
12 May 2019 9:09PM
Beautiful shot !!....impressive clarity & vibrant colour, all with a near 3D quality...clever stuff !!.Smile

I've run out of awards for today, so I'll be back tomorrow !WinkWinkWink
13 May 2019 12:34AM
Excellent, worth the effort Mark. Pam
iancrowson 12 215 169 United Kingdom
13 May 2019 7:57AM
It's a pretty good image as it is.
The focus looks good, the colour good and the composition good.
Focus shift to me means several shots taken with different focus points and combined to make an image with more depth of focus..If that was used here i would expect more in focus.
I have done a fair amount of macro flowers photography and would approach this by
camera on tripod to enable slower shutter speed and exact focusing
smaller aperture for increase depth of field
manual focas
live view, magnified as required to get exact focus required.
natural window light or a lamp
manual white balance or shoot in RAW to adjust colour balance in processing.
if DSLR mirror up and cable release for actual exposure.
However your image is successful and lot of people use flash for macro especially for insects etc.
paulbroad 15 131 1294 United Kingdom
13 May 2019 9:32AM
Very well done and an interesting technique. I have found a powerful shoe mounted flash with diffuser works too. The stacking has not been entirely successful as there are several different layers of focus, but they are not terribly demanding so you largely get away with it.

Niknut Plus
12 3.5k 82 United Kingdom
13 May 2019 4:59PM
Mmmmm ????? "awards" thingy is greyed out for this shot ?????????.SadSad

Take it from me...this is a worthy award winner !!.WinkSmile

pamelajean Plus
17 1.8k 2277 United Kingdom
13 May 2019 5:33PM
I'm glad you explained your technique, Mark, because I thought the blurred areas were very strange, not being where I would expect them to be, and not graduating and getting more blurred on the outsides.

Nevertheless, the centre is sharp and the soft areas then become more interesting because they add something different to the macro shot.

I get the feeling of a gentle breeze blowing across the petals, touching some and not touching others.

I like the flower filling the whole frame, and the soft light is lovely.
Dahlias often have a centre that is a different hue to the outside petals, and this is one of their attractive aspects.

dudler Plus
19 2.0k 1975 England
14 May 2019 2:44PM
Not my area of expertise at all - but the one time I did try focus stacking, I used manual focus, and turned the ring a little after each shot. That seemed to work. Start from beyond where you need to be, and maybe try different combinations of frames when you merge them.
dark_lord Plus
18 3.0k 836 England
14 May 2019 9:02PM
I've not tried focus stacking so I'd go with John's suggestion. Maybe uneven focus increments between exposures?
The end result looks good though.

The flash modification is intersting. As the Pringles lid is translucent rather than clear the light won't be as harsh as a straight flash.

However, with lighting it's the size of the lightsource that matters, and here it's the size of that lid, so, still small. But in relation to the subject it's large which has resulted in a softer (in lighting terms!) looking image, less contrasty, but with some modelling. In fact, as I look at your setup, the flower is being lit at an angle of 45 degrees which is another reason it's produced an effective result.

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