Back Modifications (1)
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insectt on Lilly

By supervm2
I was practising some close up photography and got this image.
I like the eyes on the insect.
I have done a little work in Photoshop I really think this is a nice image

Tags: Flowers and plants Close-up and macro Wildlife and nature

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This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.


paulbroad 10 123 1238 United Kingdom
16 Jun 2011 11:57AM
The result is reasonable. The problem with these 600 pixel files is assessing resolution. I'm not sure you have anything like enough depth of field, and to concentrate on the insects eyes being sharp, he needs to be very much larger in the frame.

You used f2.8 - why? I know there is a trend for minimal depth of field in some macro shots, but you would have been rather better at f16 I think. Remember, inherent depth of field at 1:1 in macro at f16 will be about 3mm. You are at 2.8 - not at 1:1 I realise..


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16 Jun 2011 12:26PM
Thanks Paul That is a great help.
pamelajean Plus
12 1.1k 2007 United Kingdom
16 Jun 2011 3:38PM
Hello, Peter. It is so hard to give critique when you say, "I really think this is a nice image". I think that if it was your intention to make the flower the feature of your image, with the damselfly as the icing on the cake, then it would work ok if you had more of the centre of the flower in focus. From what I understand from your description, you had your camera set for a macro shot of the flower, and the little red damselfly visited the flower, so you took a shot. If the damselfly is to be the main feature, you needed to go in a lot closer. As Paul has said, your depth of field is extremely shallow, and when I zoomed in to your damselfly, the only part that is fairly sharp is its head and legs. It is also more of a silhouette against the white flower, but I am not sure if this is because of the PS work you did on it, or if it was like this in the original. It would also be good to offset the flower centre within the frame, but in this instance I don't think you had time to consider composition too much. If you like ane the picture, that's the important thing, and that's what photography as a hobby is all about...the pleasure you get from the results. So I hope I haven't been too harsh.
17 Jun 2011 12:03PM
Pamela Thanks for the advise, it will be helpful, I was leaning over from the bank so to get closer I think I might have had a swim as well.
banehawi Plus
13 1.8k 3863 Canada
17 Jun 2011 5:15PM
Youve done quite well with this Peter. The use of 2.8 has given a shallow dof that makes the fly the obvious focal point.

There are a couple of changes you can make to improve this. First, the subject is dark, and the background is close to white, presenting an almost impossible task for the camera to expose for both. the result is an exposure for the whites, with the fly disappearing to completely black. The the composition should place the fly on a third to indicate that its the focal point.
You can increase the detail in the fly in post processing too, as Ive done, - I used the shadow tool in CS4 to do this.

The mod also has the crop done to place the fly on a third.

Hope you find this helpful,



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