digital photography tips with Digital Photo Mentor Darlene Hildebrandt

Get Inspired · Find Creativity · Seek Adventure

Spring Into Macro – Monthly Photography Challenge

Last week I rounded up a batch of fresh spring images to inspire you, I hope they did! Because this new photography challenge is all about spring, but with a twist (you didn't think it would be that easy did you?!).

Last month I urged you to try something new on an old subject and make the ordinary look extraordinary. One of the techniques I suggested was macro photography. Spring is a great time to get outside and get close to nature, and macro photography is the perfect way to do that.

Macro-photography-extension-tubes-750px-05.jpg

Last month's challenge – make the ordinary look extraordinary

Wow I have to say you guys really got into that last one! There were over 80 entries and some really creative ideas, including zoom blurs, shooting through a glass, painting with light, Lens Babies, reflections, abstracts, refractions, lots of macro (so you should be warmed up for this month already!), some funk processing techniques, two different shots by two different people done in hotel rooms, AND even gold body paint! My hat is off to all of you who participated – well done, well done!

I also loved that you gave each other ideas, encouragement and inspiration. Keep up the great work, really amazing!

Here is what a few of you had to say about the challenge (my comments are in brackets):

  • Sitting in a bar having a drink and noticed this reflection on the table. Goes to show, always have a camera available! – David Brown (Way to mix pleasure with photography and good job seeing it!)
  • I wanted to try some macro photography and came up with the idea of shooting fruit close up. It wasn't until I backlit this lemon with a flash light, that it finally popped! – Dee Dee Werner (If you want to try more food items you can read this: 6 Tips to Better Food Photography)
  • My first attempt at food photography. Looking at these lemons makes me thirsty! Natural light, iso 100, 1/6 sec. f18, 105mm macro. CC welcome. Thanks for the challenge Darlene. I'm looking at everything differently now. Jadene Huston (I love that!)
  • Last summer I saw this old weathered tree in Rocky Mountain National Park which looked amazing. Took this very close looking up the tree to capture the spinning of the grain. However I was really unhappy with how it turned out as the bright blue sky in the background washed the tree out. Reading your post I opened LR converted it to black and white, dropped the contrast way down and bumped up the clarity and POP! Now I love this photo. – JHellyer (Great job revisiting an old image and giving it new life.)
  • Darlene, I want to say that this is the first time I have participated in any of your challenges though I have been receiving your emails for some time. I have had a GREAT time with this! I feel like this challenge has really helped me understand light better. Also, I take my camera with me daily when I go to work. I am always disappointed if I didn't see something that I wanted to capture or didn't have the time to stop. This challenge has shown me that I can be more in control of my photography. Thank you so much! – Karen Boggs (She was so inspired she posted not one but eight different photos for that challenge – great job Karen!)
  • Hey Darlene! Thanks for these Challenges, they always seem to help get me out taking photos. – Mike (THAT is the idea Mike!)

And the winner is . . . P. James

For my final submission, I have to thank Karen Boggs for posting some innovative and compelling images. This jumpstarted the creative side of my thinking, instead of just shooting macro, which I tend to use a lot, I stepped outside the box and used a different shoot-through medium. So, except for using Elements to make the image smaller for uploading, this is straight out of camera. Shot in diffused sunlight coming from the cloudy day, inside on my kitchen counter I found some every-day things and voila. Used a 24-70 lens, zoomed at 38mm but cropped in as tight as the lens would allow, 2.8 at 1/400th, ISO 200. I like the results. Peter. (It's an Easter greeting card with tulips photographed through a glass of water. The glass is globe shaped and it created the soft blur). – P. James

Image by P. James

He entered seven times and did macro, black and white, shot through a glass, and through the back of an old camera. Way to really think and get outside the box. I'll be in touch to make sure you get your Amazon gift card. Congratulations!

Details for this month’s challenge

If you aren't familiar with macro photography, the first thing you'll want to do is read up on it and decide which tools you're going to use for the job. You can start here:

macro-photo-of-snowflake-featured
You may not be able to find any of these for spring but you can find Don's book on snowflakes here.

Macro-lens-750px-02.jpg

ordinary-extraordinary-750px-10

This could be a week in your yard, but photographed using reverse lens macro it becomes visually more interesting.
This could be a week in your yard, but photographed using reverse lens macro it becomes visually more interesting.

So once you've read the articles you need to pick your gear. Will you use:

  • Reverse lens macro (you just need a ring to mount your lens in reverse, cost less than $20)
  • Close-up filters (they screw in to the front of your lens, cost will depend on the quality of the glass and brand but they can range from about $10 to $100 or so)
  • Extension tubes (these mount between your camera body and the lens – read the article on these before you buy, quality varies greatly and a cheap one could damage your lens or camera – choose wisely)
  • A macro lens – obviously this is a bigger ticket item and comes with a bigger price tag. But the price is worth it if you plan to do a lot of macro and want the best image quality. If you aren't sure yet see if you can rent one from a camera store in your area or a company like Borrow Lenses.

To be eligible to win the prize:

In order to participate in this challenge and be eligible for this prize you need to:

  1. Take a macro photo of something that says SPRING to you, using one of the options or techniques mentioned above. Ideally get outside and do this! If you're in the southern hemisphere and it's fall for you get in close on those crunchy leaves or the first frost.
  2. Tell us what the object is (if you got so close we can't tell any more). Do tell us your technique! Did you try reverse lens macro, close-up filters, extension tubes, or a macro lens? A combination of things?
  3. Upload your photo and shooting info by the cut-off date of May 22nd, 2016 (11:59 pm EST or UTC-5).

You may post more than one photo, and do this as many times as you like over the month. The more you practice the better you’ll get at it, like anything.

The Prize

This month the prize has generously been donated by Don Komarechka, the winner will receive his book: Sky Crystals: Unraveling the Mysteries of Snowflakes – retail value $49.99.

cover-product-shot-web-750

exposure-settings-750 sideview-web-750

Cheers,

Darlene-1-250x130.png

You are here: Photography Challenges » Spring Into Macro – Monthly Photography Challenge


  • sjmheron

    Have heard Don speak and would love to win his book. How do I submit images for this?

    • Mary James

      Hi, have a look at the reply I sent to Rick (above), that is how I did it for the tripod challenge – think,it’s the same. I am sure Darlene will confirm, She is really helpful.

    • You just need to post an image here.

      • Ariel Matera

        I posted a separate thread but now I’m not sure if it really posted – I uploaded several images this morning and they are gone – what happened?
        I started a comment, like this one, and clicked on the picture icon at the bottom to upload an image. Please help.

  • Rick Parnell

    How do I upload my images

    • Mary James

      Hi Rick – as a very novice amateur I struggled with uploading images when I did the tripod challenge. I got around it by first dragging photos onto desktop then just dragging them off into the discussion space – you will probably have to reduce their size first because if file too big it will take forever and then might not load. I have very limited tools to do all this but you’ll find it’s quite easy once you play around with the process a little. Good luck!

      • Rick Parnell

        Thanks Mary for the help.

  • Thomas Curry

    I just took this pic at Easter. It was a gift from my son and family for Easter. A hanging basket of Violas. i like to call it “Voila Viola.”

    • Mary James

      Nice.

      • Thomas Curry

        Thank you, Mary. Much appreciated.

    • Ariel Matera

      So pretty. I like how the light shines through the petals. nice background blur

      • Thomas Curry

        Thank you, Ariel. That was my goal.

  • Thomas Curry

    Here’s one I was trying out with my new Nifty Fifty. Wow! Looks great through the view finder. BTW. It’s a Daffodil bud getting ready to open up.

  • kerry

    This is a milkweed leaf in its current horizontal position. “Grow Up!” The Monarchs need you!
    Difficulty with depth of field. Maybe time to experiment with Focus Stacking.

    Anyway, it has been a very slow spring in Manitoba and this is what greets my view of my garden so far.
    Canon 6D with Sigma l05mm 2.8 Macro lens.

  • Jeff Montgomery

    shot this with a Nikon 40mm macro lens on a Nikon D7100. I love the detail in the dogwood bloom and the narrow depth of field the lens gives.

  • stephenhops

    Taken with my 70-300 Macro Zoom at 180mm ,ISO 800, using fill flash

    • Carol Senske

      Lovely shot!

    • Mary James

      Good shot. The little purple flower however draws my eye away from the moth. Maybe you could have cropped that out, or at least most of it.

    • Ariel Matera

      how do you keep finding these beautiful “flying flowers” sitting still for you? I love all your shots!

      • stephenhops

        Ariel, I am fortunate to have a Butterfly Conservatory near my home with many species. Also if you go very early in the morning they tend to be more sluggish as they are feeding.

  • stephenhops

    As per my previous shot, taken with my 70-300 Macro Zoom at 180mm ,ISO 800, using fill flash.

    • Mary James

      Nice! Love the colours, very Springlike. I think however that more blur on that front leaf would have given more attention to the butterfly.

    • P James

      You have some very nice butterfly images and amazing landscapes on 500px. Well done!

      • stephenhops

        Thanks for your kind comments!

    • Sally Famarin Chisom

      I love the rich colors! Very nice.

  • stephenhops

    Taken with my 70-300 Macro Zoom at 3000mm ,ISO 800, 1/250 sec. using fill flash

    • Mary James

      Great shot. I just wonder … Is the flash a little too harsh though? I’m just a novice amateur but I believe there are ways to bring more light on the subject that are better than direct fill in flash. I am sure Darlene can help out with advice on that.

      • Mary, he didn’t say it was direct flash or not much. It doesn’t look over flashed to me. Often for macro a ring flash is used.

  • Jen Sheen

    Peonies ready to bloom – taken with Canon 6D, 100mm Canon macro lens

  • Jen Sheen

    blooming flower – taken with Canon 6D, 100mm Canon macro lens

    • Mary James

      Beautiful! I like how it fills the frame. It’s Autumn here in OZ just now so our colours are very different at this time. Did you use fill in flash with this photo?

      • Jen Sheen

        Thanks. I did not use any flash with this photo. The flower was in my kitchen in a vase. The counters are black soapstone. I had the overhead kitchen light on.

    • Ariel Matera

      gorgeous!! I wouldn’t have guessed this was in a vase inside your kitchen!

  • Nicole Corminboeuf

    I just love macro (and close-up) photography, especially in spring when nature is waking up from a long winter and surprizes us with all these amazing colors! I took these photos some four weeks ago when winter made one last feeble attempt to stay a bit longer. Canon 70D with 100 mm 2.8 macro lens.

    • Lenie Hulse

      Wow!!!! Really nice!!

      • Nicole C

        Thank you so much, I appreciate your kind feedback!

    • Mary James

      Beautiful photos Nicole. Autumn here in Oz at present. Nice to see Spring photos from elsewhere … Wow, snow crystals there, can almost feel the difference in temperature!

      • Nicole C

        Thanks very much! I was really lucky to capture these pics. Didn’t realize it had snowed until I heard it on the radio shortly before I had to leave for work. So I rushed out as fast as I could. It was really worth it!! Greetings to beautiful Aussie!

  • Jorge Myslinski Filho

    I shot this with a lens micro-NIKKOR 55mm 1:2.8 @ f:11.0 on a Nikon D5100 (equivalent to 83mm).

    • Carol Senske

      Great details – this is most interesting, lovely, too.

      • Jorge Myslinski Filho

        Thank you.

  • Thomas Curry

    Here’s one more. It’s a Mountain Laurel bloom. They don’t get many blooms every year, but this time was great.

    • Mary James

      Go the ‘nifty fifty’! Great shot, love the detail.

    • Carol Senske

      Beautiful image!

      • Thomas Curry

        Thank you, Carol. I appreciate it. It’s one of my favorites.

      • Thomas Curry

        Thank you, Carol. Glad you liked it.

    • tjeerd

      Like it!

      • Thomas Curry

        Thank you. Glad you liked it.

  • Sally Famarin Chisom

    I enjoy taking macro and close-up shots. This dandelion was taken with a Tamron 90mm 2.8 Macro lens.

    • Ariel Matera

      I am fascinated with dandelions as of late – this is a very interesting shot. I would love to see this in black & white

      • Sally Famarin Chisom

        Thank you. I”ll have to give the B&W a try.

  • Suesheila

    These pink shamrock flowers were taken with a Tamron 60mm F/2 Macro 1:1 lens earlier this week, mounted on my Nikon D5500. The settings were aperture mode, f/16, 1/60, ISO 2800.

    What I did was to move as close to the flowers as I could get and still be in focus, about 3.5″ away.

  • Suesheila

    These white shamrock flowers were taken with the Tamron 60mm lens, f/16, 1/60/ ISO 1400.

  • Grace

    Test

    • P James

      Hi Grace. The previous challenge can be found at the following link: http://www.digitalphotomentor.com/make-the-ordinary-look-extraordinary-photography-challenge/ or just go to the Digital Photo Mentor main page, scroll to the bottom and select the “Photography Tips” link and you can scroll down to the “Make the Ordinary Look Extraordinary Photo Challenge”. Read through that article and everyone’s submissions are at the bottom, just like this one. Cheers…Peter

  • Sally Famarin Chisom

    Here is another shot of the dandelion at a different angle. Taken with a Tamron 90mm 2.8 Macro lens.

    • Ariel Matera

      I love looking at this….

      • Sally Famarin Chisom

        As do I. Thank you!

  • Susan Palmer Gutterman

    I am relatively new to macro photography, and I love it. I went on a wildflower shoot this week and these were shot with my Olympus OM-D E-M5 camera. The lens is an M. Zukio 60mm macro. The orange flower is a California Poppy.

    • Ariel Matera

      I LOVE that orange poppy shot! WOW. It fills the frame nicely and that color is spectacular! I also love the image of the single yellow flower.

  • Rick Parnell

    A purple flower in my backyard after it rained not sure of the name of the flower. it opens up in the morning and closes up at night. A dandelion that has been wind blown.

  • P James

    African Violet, window light and I tried to keep the light soft so I think it was just out of direct sunlight. F4 at 1/250th, ISO 400, 65mm on my 24-70 with as close as I could crop. Just love the richness of the purple against the lush green. Just getting started with the weekend coming up, the macro lens is coming out as the trees have started budding in our area. So excited….

  • reefski

    this was taken in my yard. Echium and one of the many busy bees this time of year. Canon 5D iii, Sigma 105 macro 1/1250, f7.1, ISO 800

    • Ariel Matera

      that’s hilarious! It looks like the bee got too much nectar and fell in, drunk on the sweet stuff 🙂
      Great timing!

    • haha this is one awesome shot!

    • Karen Boggs

      I love that angle!

  • Joshua Raif

    Petal of a Passion fruit flower

    • tjeerd

      Very interesting and painterly…

  • Ariel Matera

    I am a brand new photographer, if you can call me that….I love taking photos of beautiful and interesting things. I am drawn to Macro photography and I can’t wait to learn how to ‘really do it’!
    I got a Canon Rebel T5 for Christmas this past year and I literally got my Macro lens in the mail yesterday – happy birthday to me!
    I would love to sell some stock images and figure those of you in this community would be the best place to get constructive feedback, so lay it on me!
    First image is a dandelion, natch. Unedited except to resize
    Canon Rebel T5, f/5.6, ISO 1600, 60mm

    • tjeerd

      do it a lot and you will discover what works and what not and why…..

    • Ariel – doing photography for stock is getting increasingly difficult. The kinds of images that sell, ones that the stock agencies want – are NOT pretty photos of flowers and mountains. They literally have 1000s or millions of those already. They want lifestyle shots – people doing things, stuff like a person in a wheelchair using a laptop, a cowboy on a horse using a cell phone, a guy in a green shirt holding a balloon, and other odd stuff like that. Stock is not what you think and isn’t a way to make a lot of money in photography any more. It’s difficult to get accepted, and difficult to get your images to sell, and when they do you get maybe 50 cents from each sale as most stock is now royalty free. Buyers can get like 100 images for $10.

  • Ariel Matera

    This is a sewing kit tape measure. I turned my lens around and held it against the camera body. Saw this cool tutorial on Pinterest so I had to try it out.
    Canon Rebel T5, f/0, ISO 800, 50mm

    • Elaine Hutchings

      Oh so creative and very cool!

      • Ariel Matera

        Thank you so much, Elaine 🙂

        • Elaine Hutchings

          my pleasure Ariel!

  • Ariel Matera

    I posted several images – where are they?? GAH

  • Jen Sheen

    Spring butterfly on lavender flowers. taken with Canon digital rebel and Canon 100mm macro

  • Jen Sheen

    I guess I like Macro shots….Here are some redbud blossoms in our yard in Virginia. Canon 6D 100mm macro

  • Joann VanHorn

    These wet dandelion seeds pod were taken on a rainy springtime walk. My Nikon Coolpix L830 has an amazing array of semi automatic settings, including macro, and a 34X wide optical zoon lens. Kind of like cheating 🙂

  • Jim Mc

    Thanks, Darlene for getting me outside on a spring day, camera in hand. Here is a very tiny bud on our pine tree – photographed with a Nikon d610 & 105mm macro, straight from the camera.

  • kerry

    April showers bring…..waterdrops on a screen door.All day rain kept camera indoors. The rest of April has been all snow. The brown tinge in many of the drops is from the Muskoka chair on my front deck
    Canon 6D Sigma 105mm 2.8 Aperture Priority, Manual focus.

  • Richard Wichels

    Stamens — taken with Canon G3X, 60mm, f/5.6, 1/640 sec –close up with crop for macro effect
    Shot with late afternoon light

    https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1584/26289700962_839c1bbd8a_b.jpg

    • Carol Senske

      Wonderful macro work – love the details and colors.

      • Richard Wichels

        Thanks very much Carol—!

  • Cinnara

    I shot this with my Nikon 105 mm lens. 1/125 sec, f /6.7, ISO 500.

  • Cinnara

    Also with the Nikon 105mm lens.
    1/3 sec at f/13, ISO 100
    I had to heavily postprocess it with Lightroom.

    • Just curious what did you do to it in LR? It doesn’t look heavily processed.

      • Cinnara

        But it is. It was much too dark.
        I brightened it, and played around with the orange luminance shift, the contrast, the shadows.

        Below is the original

        • Ah yes very underexposed. Well you did a great job on the processing is my point! If I can’t tell you did it well!

  • tjeerd

    Looking deep into a pansy flower heart, where great beauty can be found.
    Taken with Canon SX40 and Raynox DCR-250 macrolens attached.
    Shallow DoF, so took 40 shots and stacked with CombineZP.

    • Carol Senske

      Tis is AWESOME!

      • tjeerd

        Thanks Carol…

    • Mary James

      Beautiful … Some day us beginners might be that good.

      • tjeerd

        Thanks Mary, keep on trying…

    • Ariel Matera

      holy cow this is awesome!!

    • P James

      I had not heard of the Raynox DCR-250 lens before I saw this post. I looked it up online and I’ve just ordered one from a national camera store. I am eagerly awaiting it’s arrival. Thanks for sharing. I hope to stack some images too, very soon. Lovely work.

      • tjeerd

        Have fun! Zerene Stacker is a very good one but not for free. CombineZM and CombineZP are for free and also yield excellent results. In order to take multiple shots for the above picture I used a Canon hack on the Canon SX40 called CHDK which allows you to run scripts so that the camera does things automatically, like taking the 40 shots and moving the focus point a little with every shot. It’s a bit tricky, but like with anything, after learning its plain sailing.

        • any idea is there is similar hack for Nikon ?

          • tjeerd

            Anne, no, as far as I know there is no such hack for Nikon, but as I say, as far as I know. There is a hack for Canon DSLR’s as well, called Magic Lantern.

        • Thank you for sharing all your information and knowledge on this subject with everyone in the comments!

    • Sharon Paratchek

      That is an awesome picture!! I have never heard of stacking before, will have to look that one up. I really hope to be able to capture images like that one day. Thanks for sharing.

    • SandraB

      WOW…this is an absolutely stunning photo! I love the vibrant colors and clarity. Great photo!!

    • What a great picture ! Nature never ceases to amaze..

  • tjeerd

    Detail of a small flower from the garden.
    Taken with Canon 70D plus Canon 100mm f2.8 USM Macro lens + Raynox DCR-250.
    f16 did not give enough DoF, so took 5 shots, stacked with CombineZP.
    Aphid serves as scale (only saw him/her later on the screen)

    • Sally Famarin Chisom

      I love this composition. Excellent.

    • Mary James

      Stunning!

  • Jim Mc

    Sorry – posted twice: perhaps Darlene could give us a lesson on how to post.

    • Sometimes Disqus just has a delay in showing your image. I say wait a day and come back and check before you post again.

  • Jim Mc

    Lilac bud – just the very beginning. Nikon d610 and 105mm macro, straight from camera.

    • abrianna

      Lovely.

    • Elaine Hutchings

      This is very beautiful and unique ♥

  • Pete Mueller

    Amaryllis Stamen early morning oblique sunlight

  • Carol Senske

    Lovely work!

  • Carol Senske

    Here is a tiny bouquet I call “A Shot of Wildflowers”> The little blooms are all spring wildflowers picked in our yard and put into a shot glass. I thought I posted this but it doesn’t appear to be here. If I double-post, Darlene, would you please remove one? I’ve looked twice.

    The Camera is a Sony DSC-H9 set to macro. f 2.7, focal length 5.2 mm

    • Carol, the “macro” setting on your camera just sets up different things in the camera to expose for macro. It can’t help the lens focus any closer. For that you either need a camera or lens that has the ability to focus in close.

  • Carol Senske

    This is a wildflower called Bloodroot, one of the first to bloom in springtime. f 2.7, 90mm Tamron macro lens, Canon T4i camera, manual settings, ISO 100

  • Nicole C

    I’d like to share with you some of my last year’s favorite spring macros. My 100 mm 2.8 macro lens allows me to achieve a shallow depth of field which is my preferred method of shooting. I hope you enjoy these pics as much as I do. (Sorry, couldn’t quite decide which ones to post…)

    • Mary James

      Great shots, really like shot numbers 3 & 9 because they are very sharp and so different. I don’t have a macro/micro lens myself but when I see photos like these … well, I might just review the budget or try to borrow one when I return from my holiday mid June. I suspect Darlene would say ‘don’t wait, just get out there and practice, practice, practice’. Already I’ve learnt so much from her tips but for now this challenge isn’t one I feel ready for or … shhh have time for. I like to check the contributions of you guys though.

  • Orrelljet

    Reflection of a flower in a drop of water, taken with an Olympus OMD-EM1, and a 60 mm macro lens

    • Sharon Paratchek

      Wow! What a shot. Is there any possibility you might be willing to share your technique with a newbie?

    • Very nice! Just so everyone is clear – the correct term for this is refraction. It’s technically not a reflection you are seeing through the water droplet, it’s acting just like a small lens. If you look through one of your lenses (take both caps off) it will do the same thing. Inverted and upside down.

  • Nitish

    Dear Darlene,

    About 6 month ago I read your article for beginners at digital photography school. I’m very new in photography. You inspire and force me to buy a new DSLR, I just bought canon 700D last month. I gain so much confidence by your articles that directly start shooting in Manual mode. The image I’m sharing is one of my very first click and having the sense of “Spring into macro”. I edited it little bit in LR (learnt from your youtube videos). Please critique my image, so that I improve further.

    Details:

    Lens – 18-55 mm IS II (kit lens)

    ISO – 200

    Aperture – f/5.6

    Shutter speed – 1/160

    • great job! Just watch for distracting bits in the background like the stems and other little yellow flower. Try to find a camera angle that simplifies the background.

  • smat

    Just joined the Photo Mentor…..looking forward to learning!…..So…..What I learned about Macro Photography. A lot. I dont have a macro lens yet but I do have extension tubes (3 sizes) that I can use and learn on.

    1. Bring the tripod or mono pole. Trying to get really close AND manual focus is challenging….made even more challenging when you forgot your tripod and trying to get the shot hand holding.
    2. Get comfortable reading glasses. I need reading glasses and typically its not an issue because I’m shooting auto focus however, it becomes an issue when you need to manual focus and see what the hell you’re shooting!
    3. Wind is your enemy. I decided to go shoot in a local park and what I learned is that even the smallest of wind can make your shot blurry……so I needed to develop Macro Patience 🙂

    4. Macro photography really opened my eyes to understanding depth of field and shutter speed.

    These are baby pine cones by the way 🙂

    Its great to learn……I love this stuff……thank you for allowing me to join!

    Steve
    Nikon D7100
    50mm lens with 12mm extension tube
    1/80
    f5.6
    ISO200

    • Ariel Matera

      nice image! I just joined the world of photography myself and have just gotten a macro lens and look forward to playing, too. Welcome!

      • smat

        Thank You Ariel! I look forward to seeing some of the great pics on here.

      • tjeerd

        enjoy and the more you play the better the results become…

    • tjeerd

      50mm prime + Ext tubes is indeed a great starter combination.

  • Pete Mueller

    Canon T3i, 100mm Tokina Macro lens. Taken a few weeks ago in garden, diffused/open shade. I had just read an article concerning Fibonacci sequence… noticed that this was a prime example.

  • Pete Mueller

    Canon T3i, 100mm Tokina Macro lens. This done in studio with natural (widow) light to camera right. It is a yellow variegated rose flowering. I’ve decided to title it “Kiss Me…”

  • gimpe@shaw.ca

    I went out this morning with my Canon 7D Mark II and only 60mm macro lens (96mm on my crop sensor). Came across some fiddle heads near the lagoon.

  • Jane G

    I went out this morning with my Canon 7D Mark II and 60mm macro lens (1.6 crop factor). Found a small group of fiddle heads and took some shots.

  • Playing with the morning dew drops in the yard a few weeks ago. I have been on a sunburst fetish lately and thought to add it into my macro photography recently. The results have been interesting. This is Canon 6D w/Tamron 90mm 1:1 macro lens. F/13, ISO800, 1/400th sec shutter.

    • Ariel Matera

      it looks like a small little world hanging on the grass. so very interesting. This would be neat to see in B&W except for the drop in the center.

      • I am not big into the selective colors, but understand what you mean.

        • Ariel Matera

          oh man, this is awesome!! I LOVE it!

          • Thank you! I have to be honest and say I love it much more that the first one. I was so focused on “green” theme because of spring happening. I took several shots that I had blinders on during processing and with that, I say thank you for opening my mind back up and helping me pull those blinders off 🙂

          • Ariel Matera

            You’re most welcome 🙂 I wish I knew how to do the selective color technique – I sure love it. Maybe it’s because I have no idea what I’m doing and am still learning – you have obviously been doing this for a while, so perhaps my naivete came in handy – glad to be useful!

          • Consider that a blessing! The learning never ends. I am constantly reading on techniques, tips, and tricks ect. There are times I edit one image and am happy and other times I can have possibly 5 virtual copies with different edits and take a week or two in order to feel the direction I am going for before going any further. I am finally confident with using Lightroom (and still plenty to learn inside it), but Photoshop on the other hand gives me the “I have no idea what I’m doing and am still learning” feeling. Keep at it, take it in stride and you will get there. You were extremely useful 🙂 and you reminded me to remain open, because it is extremely easy to focus our minds on one single thought.

          • Do you process your images Ariel? what program do you use?

          • Ariel Matera

            not really – I do have Photoshop Elements and have fooled around in it a bit. I can do very limited things because I haven’t had a chance to figure it all out. I have a book to help me by Scott Kelby but I am a hands-on type of learner so I just play ’til I like it

          • Cool. As I tell most of my students I usually recommend Lightroom. It’s made for photographers and may not be initially intuitive but doesn’t have stuff in it we don’t need. Photoshop and even ELements are made for graphic designers and 90% of the stuff in there you’ll never use so it just adds to the confusion.

  • Orrelljet

    Reflection of a lilly in a drop of water. Used an Olympus OMD-EM1 with a 60mm macro lens, f/5, 1/80 sec, ISO 200, with flash.

    • Ariel Matera

      that is so COOL!! I love the creative thought in this shot!

      • Orrelljet

        Thank you so much

  • tjeerd

    Picked a few flowers on a morning walk (from a shrub, don’t know its name).
    Placed them at home on a shiny black underground against a matt black background, camera on tripod and this is what the Canon 70D+100mm f2.8 USM macro lens saw.

    • Ariel Matera

      beautiful!

      • tjeerd

        thanks and have a great day.

    • P James

      What did you use for the shiny black underground? Is it a black mirror or plastic? The look is very nice, striking.

      • tjeerd

        Used very dark perspex….

    • Karen Boggs

      Very dramatic.

  • Charlie R.

    Nothing like a caterpillar covered in morning dew to signal the start of spring. This macro shot was taken with a 100-400 mm lens. Some great macro images can be captured with a telephoto when you don’t have your macro lens available.

  • A royal fern (Osmunda regalis) appears to be having a bad hair day in its spring awakening. Canon 70D, Tamron 90mm macro, 1/250th, f/18, ISO 100, ring flash.

  • Keith Royall

    I thought I would pick up the courage to post some of my images, as this challenge is about macro photography. The challenge inspired me to try a short series of shots on the stages of blossom on a crab apple tree opening up and of the leaves on an ornamental maple opening.
    My camera is a Sony Alpha 58. The lens is a 55-200 zoom, and 3 extension tubes. I used the P setting which fixed the aperture at F5 and shutter speed at 1/100. Focusing was done manually.

    • tjeerd

      lovely shots indeed…

  • Pat Sheehan

    Both shot this morning on iPhone6s with moment macro lense. On each made minor adjustments of mid-tones and contrast using Snapseed. The breeze was a challenge.

  • Marjorie Bull

    Macro was my first love. When I saw how much of my work was macro, I decided to abstain for a while, and found myself without anything to show in this challenge! I had to go all the way back to February to find one! But that’s when the first strawberries arrived in the supermarket, and I decided I had to have a strawberry shoot before a strawberry sundae.

  • Amal Ward

    I can’t seem to load a picture even at 500kb. 🙁

  • Chris Tygesen

    First try at handheld macro. Cropping and re-coloring in PhotoPlus. Canon Rebel T5i, Sigma 17-70mm. F7.1, 1/2000, ISO 400.

  • tjeerd

    Damsel en Dragon flies are great creatures for macros. When you approach them they normally fly away but more often than not they come back to excact the same location while you have settled nicely in meantime and able to approach them….

    Here a “dancing jewel” or platycypha caligata (female).
    Canon 70D with 100mm f2.8 USM. (f7, ISO 320, 1/100).

    • Karen Boggs

      So sharp! and the colors are fantastic!

  • Mike Hayes

    An initial attempt at Macro photography – a blooming rhododendron bush in the front yard. Sony SLT-A58 with standard kit lens zoomed to 55mm. ISO100, f 5.6, 1/400 sec.

  • Chris Tygesen

    Rebel T5i, 18-55mm kit lens with macro attachment. Color adjusted and cropped in PhotoPlus.

  • Dennis Mortlock

    Just found this critter sitting on some flowers I was photographing after a nice rain. He was doing some close-up examination himself. Shot with a Nikon 750 with a Nikor 105 macro lens, ISO 250, handheld at 1/160 sec., at f14.

  • Amal Ward

    This was the perfect topic since I just got a used 150 macro lens this week. I love it! This is one of the few tulips in my garden that the squirrels did not get to last fall. Nikon 750, Sigma 150 mm f/2.8 macro lens. handheld.

  • Carol Senske

    The apple tree finally decided to bloom and burst into riotous white and pink! I love these blossoms, even if they don’t last long!

  • tjeerd

    Seedpod of some weed next to the road, size about 2cm..
    Placed on green under/background with sidelight through the window and removed luminosity out of background green with LightZone (freeware editing software) so that it became black except the darker green, still visible, which was the shadow.
    Used Canon 50mm prime lens and 65mm Ext Tubes.
    Canon 70D f16, ISO 250, Tv 1/2 sec

  • Nitish

    Hi Darlene!

    First of all thanks for encouraging me to be a photographer. This is my second post in which I’m trying to show the mood and color of spring. Rebel T5i, 55-250 kit lense, ISO 100, f/5.6 and 1/800 sec.

  • Cinnara

    Campanula

  • Karen Boggs

    What better expression of Spring than butterflies! So first we must have the caterpillar. Last year I planted Milkweed to attract Monarchs. So I have at least 4 of these guys. Taken with my Pentax K3, D FA 100mm2.8 Macro lens. 1/100s; f/100 and 200 ISO.

  • Karen Boggs

    This is a very small snail on a Spiderwort. Pentax K3, D FA 100mm2.8 Macro lens. 1/100s; f2.80; ISO 100

  • Jeff Holdgate

    This is a Tulip, Nikon 85mm 1.8 with extension tubes. D750, 1/100 @F11, ISO 160 Hand held,

  • Bob

    Here is a macro photo of a bunch of Mountain Ash berries taken with the contrasting frost. Taken with a 16-300 Tamron at f5.6,ISO 100,1/640, 103mm. I have not taken many macro shots with this lens but I think I’ll start using it more for macro shots.

  • P James

    A couple of frames from the archives. Found a spider with a stealthy approach on the web and a healthy appetite. One of the ants wandered too close to the spider web and was quickly entombed by the spider. Armed with my Canon Xsi, a 60mm macro and a Speedlite off camera, I was able to work quickly to get these shots. Do they represent spring….? Maybe….maybe not, but they’re cool!

  • P James

    A couple of frames from the archives. Found a spider with a stealthy approach on the web and a healthy appetite. One of the ants wandered too close to the spider web and was quickly entombed by the spider. Armed with my Canon Xsi, a 60mm macro and a Speedlite off camera, I was able to work quickly to get these shots. Do they represent spring….? Maybe….maybe not, but they’re cool! I tried to load the photos in order but you get the idea…. maybe the ant was just cold and the spider was wrapping him up in a nice warm blanket….

    • Ariel Matera

      I am fascinated with taking pictures of spiders and their webs – these are just cool!!

      • P James

        Thank you so much! It was absolutely fascinating to watch the speed that the spider used to #1: get down the web to trap the ant and #2: the rapid spin of the ant into the ‘cocoon’. It was like the spider was running on a sprint to spin the web around this poor ant. This was shot in daylight against a wooden deck railing. I was using an off-camera flash to illuminate the spider and web. The shutter speed was fast enough to block out the ambient light and the background disappeared.

  • Mike Hayes

    First attempt/submission – a bud on the rhododendron bush in the front yard.
    The details: Sony SLT-A58 APS-C; kit lens zoomed to 55mm; f5.6; 1/400 sec; ISO 100.
    All comments welcome.

  • Alexander Ruiz

    Hey first time posting, Always loved taking pictures but since getting a Canon Rebel T5 for christmas a year ago been trying to learn how to take more control of my photography. Very intrigued by macro photography so thought I participate in this month’s challenge. Not sure if this would be conciderred “spring” but these are some pics of a pineapple that was growing out side of the house my family rented in Orlando this pass weekend. I tried to take different pics from different angles using my Canon Rebel T5 with its kit 18-55 mm lens.

    the first pic of the full pineapple was done at 53mm f/5.6 1/80sec 2000 ISO
    the others were done at 55mm f/5.6 1/80 or 1/100sec and 3200-5000 ISO

    none were post processed other than resizing to be able to post. I havent had a chance to play with processing images yet and going to start learning so any tips or advice on what I can do in Lightroom or photoshop is appreciated

  • Sharon Paratchek

    I am very new to photography. I took this photo with the macro setting on my camera. A Canon Rebel T3, shutter 1/200, aperture 5.6, ISO 100. Any helpful hints would be appreciated. I know it is kinda blurry, I took this free hand out in my garden, on a kinda windy day.

    • Hi Sharon – my guess as to why it’s blurry is that you have likely exceeded the minimum focusing distance for your lens. Most kit lenses will go to about 12″. I looked and if you have the 18-55 lens it’s about 10″. If you go closer than that anything that is 10″ away will be sharp, anything closer will not. The macro setting does NOT affect focusing distance. That is why you need a close-up filter, extension tube, or macro lens to get closer.

      See how the back part of the flower seems sharper? That is likely the case here. See if any of these options can help you: http://www.digitalphotomentor.com/the-ultimate-guide-macro-photography/

      There are less expensive options to get started in macro if you aren’t ready to buy a lens yet.

  • Nicole Elizabeth

    I took this flower shot at Tulip Fest last summer in Albany, NY. Nikon D5100 with macro lens.

    • abrianna

      Very pretty. I like the ruffled tulips. I see we have the same great camera 🙂

      • Nicole Elizabeth

        Thanks very much!

  • Nicole Elizabeth

    I took this photo in a flower garden in the spring a few years back; macro lens.

  • Bob

    Here is a macro photo of a bunch of Mountain Ash berries taken with the contrasting frost. Taken with a 16-300 Tamron at f5.6,ISO 100,1/640, 103mm. I have not taken many macro shots with this lens but I think I’ll start using it more for macro shots.
    View Hide
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d8388599c6b197a9d596a4c67c9b2d8563461030ee722c2612cb59ec255fe333.jpg

  • P James

    Nature’s Basket. Available light. 60mm macro.

    • Ariel Matera

      what awesome perspective – I presume these are dandelions from above?

      • P James

        Not a dandelion but a very similar plant when blooming to seed. I don’t know what it’s called but it’s about 3 times the size of a typical dandelion “head” constructed by these little baskets. I’m in very tight for this image so you don’t see the ball shape like the dandelion.

  • P James

    I finally had some time to get into the back yard and see what’s small. I found this poppy bud just waiting for the right time to bloom. Canon 70D, 60mm macro with a Raynox 250 attached. (Thanks to tjeerd for the information on this macro lens add-on) ISO 800, F22 at 1/200th, illuminated with an off camera flash with a Rogue Flashbender softbox. Handheld in the breeze, manual focus, and moved in until I had the focus where I wanted it. Love the dark / light contrast and detail in the fine hairs on the plant.

    • tjeerd

      Great to see you played with the Raynox!

      • P James

        Thanks for mentioning it in your posts! It’s a relatively inexpensive add-on for anyone wanting to try out the macro world. When I pair it with my 60mm macro, which already gives me 1:1 capability, I can get in really close and magnify the world. Now if only there were an add-on that could create a few more hours in each day…..I’d be able to find time to shoot more.
        I haven’t had any luck with the CombineZP. I downloaded it but it freezes when I’m stacking even only a few photos. I’m running Windows 10 on a PC and I don’t know if there’s a conflict or processing error I’m missing.

        • tjeerd

          I also run Windows 10 and have no problems. Maybe also try CombineZM, which is an older version and actually the one I use most of the time.
          Do file/new and select the photos you want to stack. And next do Macro/Do Stack”
          Don’t know what’s a few for you, but the program can indeed seem to freese if there are to many shots which are to big in size. All depends on memory available on your PC. Try to resize the photos and see what happens, or start to try with 5 shots only for example.
          When I stack 72 photos I have to make them really small, need a new PC with more RAM.
          And by the way, I started with the Raynox on a Bridge Camera (Canon SX40), allows variable magnification using Zoom, but does not allow high f value to get deeper DoF.

          You may also try Zerene stacker, its not for free, but a trial version can be downloaded.

          As for hours in the day, hope you will reach retirement as I have, makes quite a difference.

          • P James

            Thank you for your suggestions. CombineZM worked well in comparison to the “freeze” I experienced with CombineZP. I’d only tried stacking 7 and then only 3 and I’d still have the freeze up. Now with ZM, no delays. It managed the files well and I don’t think my PC or RAM was the issue. Now I just have to find some calm days and some willing tiny subjects.

          • tjeerd

            Hi James, glad to read you are making progress. And by the way, stacking is not only useful at macro level but can somtimes also be useful in the wide world, like shown here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/tdwrsa/22218138635/in/album-72157658150530462/

          • P James

            Wonderful! Thank you so much for sharing.

    • SandraB

      I agree about the contrast and detail, very good. I like the lime green color it really makes the hairs of the plant stand out.

  • P James

    One more from the yard, it’s a double-plum bush that is just blooming. This little bud has yet to open into a glorious delicate flower but it still has soft petals that are wrapping together in gentle curves. 60mm macro with the Raynox 250. It allows closer than 1:1. F22 at 1/200th ISO 250. Off camera flash and the gentle light from the speedlite in a Rogue Flashbender softbox.

    • Karen Boggs

      REALLY NICE! I love the wavy lines.

      • P James

        Thanks Karen.

      • abrianna

        I too like the wavy lines.

  • Rita Heinrichs

    Crocus’ blooming in my garden. They look quite large in the photo but were wee spots of yellow in the garden. I don’t own a macro lenses so I used a 55mm lenses,zoomed in as much as it would let me, with a macro filter(+4). Camera settings were ISO 200,f 5.6, 1/100 sec. and with the filter-33mm, Canon Rebel SL1. The second image was taken with an iphone and the tiny macro lens that are available for phones. So much fun to play with! It is an image of the organisms that grow on the trunks of trees-I do not know what they are called.

  • P James

    The double-plum is blooming. I found one the was only starting to open and the pink petals were still rich with color. F32, 1/200, ISO 160, Flash with the Rogue Flashbender.

  • Nicole Compton

    Macro shot of a Tulip on Mother’s Day last year. I used my Nikon D5100 with macro lens.

  • Ray N

    This spider has been in this plant (calla lily) for the last 3 days – I first spotted him/her Saturday and this was taken Monday. I have never seen a spider like this. Photo taken with a 21mm extension tube on a 50 mm f1.8 Canon lens and EOS T3 camera.

    • tjeerd

      Like this one. 50mm+Ext tube is good combination.

    • SandraB

      Interesting photo, I love the simplicity of it and the way the spider has been captured!

    • Elaine Hutchings

      Great shot!!
      That’s a crab spider. They are completely harmless but pretend to be very dangerous when you get close, as they lift their front legs to show you how big they are, lol so cute! Some have lime yellow instead of pink.

    • did he every come out?

  • Ray N

    And a second submission. Hornet hanging out on our pear tree – new fruit and all. This was taken with a 31 mm extension tube and 50 mm f1.8 lens with my T3. This and the photo before were both handheld…..

  • tjeerd

    julia skimmer or orthetrum julia

    For this one I had to take of my shoes. Resting on a twig above the water and the macro lens on the camera I had to wade over wobbly rocks to get closer. Of course she flew away, but as with most of these creatures, they come back to the same spot.

    Thanks Julia for posing against a dark spot of shade.
    Canon 70D and 100mm f2.8 Macro lens. Tv=1/320, f9, ISO 320

    • Karen Boggs

      Beautiful!

    • SandraB

      Great shot, I love that you captured the texture in the wing and the shadow of it on the stick! Beautiful!!

    • Ariel Matera

      stunning! I love how you edited the background to remove distractions

      • tjeerd

        Thanks Ariel (which by the way over here is the best washing powder if you believe adverts) and yes, it was indeed a dark shadow background.

  • Bob

    Photo of water falls in Smithers last summer at Twin Falls. 1/1000, F6.3, ISO 160, 35mm

    • Chris Tygesen

      I love that it looks like water, not that fuzzy cotton candy which is all the rage right now. Beautiful shot.

  • P James

    Finally had some luck with the focus stacking in CombineZM. Thanks to tjeerd for the instructions and recommendations. This is a stack of 7 images of a flower ready to bloom. My DOF was very shallow and the stacking didn’t eliminate all of the “out of focus” leaves, but I was thrilled to see the results.

    • tjeerd

      Perseverance and you get there! Nice result!

  • SandraB

    This is my first time sharing photos with anyone besides my family. I love the macro photography! I’ve attached a few recent photos I’ve taken with my Nikon D750, using both my Nikon macro lens and Nikon zoom 28-300mm. All photos were taken handheld. I welcome all input good and constructive!!

    • P James

      Very nice images!

      • SandraB

        Thanks for the feedback!

    • tjeerd

      Sandra, I like the first one the most, nice soft background. The last one I would have used some exposure compensation.

      • SandraB

        Thanks, I’ll keep that in mind. I may try playing with exposure, in Photoshop or Snapseed on the last one, and see if I can improve it a bit.

  • abrianna

    I enjoy macro and close up photography. This flower is called an orchid rose and it is a tall thin plant. Taken with Nikon D5100 Sigma 18-250 macro lens. at 250 mm, ISO 560, f7.1, 1/160th sec.

  • abrianna

    Nikon D5100, Sigma 18-250 lens at 44mm, ISO 560, f 7.1, 1/80th sec. This is salvia and here I zoomed with my feet and left my lens wider so I could show the red surrounding this one purple stalk.

  • abrianna

    Nikon D5100, Sigma 18-250, 105 mm, ISO 200, f 7.1, 1/160th sec. This is a lovely orange rose almost unfurled completely.

  • abrianna

    Nikon D 5100, Sigma 18-250, shot at 250mm, ISO 720, f 6.3, 1/30th sec. Gorgeous purple-blue berries.

  • abrianna

    Nikon D5100, Nikor 50 mm lens, ISO 400, f 1.8, 1/160th sec. These are my Passover tulips.

  • abrianna

    Nikon D5100, Sigma 18-250 lens, 250mm, ISO 280, f 6.3, 1/500th sec. This is star jasmine-smells wonderful.

    • P James

      I love the softness in this. Beautiful.

      • abrianna

        Thank you.

    • tjeerd

      please include the scent in your EXIF data….:;) looks like a propellor!

      • abrianna

        LOL! If only I could!

  • P James

    Springtime for me this year means a variety of backyard projects including repairing an aged wooden deck. I was pleasantly surprised to see the colorful reflections on these shiny gold colored screws, the green coming from the trees but the red??? I don’t know what caused those shades. Not as pretty as nature’s foliage but the macro lens provides that ability to view things a little differently.

  • P James

    Springtime repairs means out with the damaged aged wood and reclaim the sturdy strong wood. A little transition to black and white.

    • tjeerd

      Interesting shot..

      • P James

        Thanks. I find there’s something “artful” (if that’s a word) in macro photography of everyday items. And for me, springtime often means repairing those weathered out-door items or building a hobby project. I like the lines, spiral curves and contrast of shapes. Just fun.

  • abrianna

    Nikon D5100, Sigma 18-250 lens, shot at 250, ISO 100, f 11, 1/160th sec. I shot this simply for the challenge of seeing if I could capture this tiny fly on the petal of an iceberg rose.

  • tjeerd

    When is it a macro, when a close-up? If enlargement is 1:1 (compared to sensor) or more its a macro, else a close-up, I once read. If that’s the definition, this one is a close-up.
    Tried to get a tulip in focus from the top, with the rim and the stamen more or less in focus.
    With 3cm between the rim and the stamen, that would be impossible. So put lens in MF mode, placed camera on a simple rail and took a few shots (with remote realease cable to minimize shake) and stacked them.

    Canon 70D, Canon 100mm f2.8 USM lens, ISO 100, f9, 1/30th

    • Karen Boggs

      Thank you for talking about stacking. I did a little research to understand it better and I hope to get out this weekend and give it a try.

      • tjeerd

        success and have fun!

        • Karen Boggs

          Thank you for the link Darlene. I decided to jump into the Photoshop club and purchased Elements 14. There is some processing that I find intuitive and others “not so much”. I tend to get a little frustrated in the processing arena. I will continue to give it a try though!

          • Great job. Photoshop in any form, even Elements can be confusing. I often recommend Lightroom for beginners and that is my program of choice. See how you do with Elements and if you find it challenging give LR a try.

  • SandraB

    That’s a very interesting photo of the tulip. You you have peeked my interest about stacking. I’ve read a little, but found it confusing. I agree with Karen, I’m going to do some more research on it after looking at your photo to see if I can get a better understanding of it. Thanks!

    • tjeerd

      Well Sandra, its not that complicated. Put your camera on a rail like this one http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/163879-REG/Novoflex_CASTEL_L_Castel_L_Focusing_Rack_Standard.html?gclid=CjwKEAjwsMu5BRD7t57R1P2HwBgSJABrtj-RHnoVZvOhmx89Ti5ClNeyII_A5I2syjDMv3rLLKaieBoCqkrw_wcB
      but there are many other and also cheaper models.

      Lens in Manual Focus Mode.
      Take a photo with start of subject in focus.
      Move camera on the rail a little on, take next.

      Repeat depending on requirement.

      (An with camera in Live View mode you can also more easily see what’s in focus or not.
      Use a decent f value, maybe f9. Don’t try high f like f32 for more depth, photos become unsharp.

      You could also try this handheld in cont shooting mode and move camera while shooting, some people seem to be masters in this, I am not.

      Next feed photos into a stacking program, I normally use freeware CombineZM, but PhotoShop can also do it, but I don’t have that..
      Stacking software will align and scale automatically and collect in focus area of all shots. Scaling is needed because as you get closer to the subject, the subject size changes on the sensor.
      Finally save the stacked single image.
      In the process you have lost the EXIF data. (Maybe with Photo Shop stacking it is kept by PS, don’t know), I use EXIFToolGui to copy EXIF from one of the shots to the stacked image, also freeware.

      Have fun, great for a rainy day.

      • SandraB

        Thanks so much for the directions on stacking. I did a bit of online research and had not found anything that explained it as simply as you did. I appreciate your taking the time to type instructions on the process and for the link to the rail. I’m looking forward to giving it a try.

      • SandraB

        Thanks Darlene! It’s like working on a crossword puzzle and finding all the correct pieces and putting them together correctly. The Lightroom and photoshop process is quite intricate. This article on stacking is by far the best explanation I have read on the
        subject. Both digitalphotomentor.com and digital-photography-school.com are the most informative websites with easy to understand articles. Again, thanks for sending the link my way, I enjoyed the article!!

        • No worries. I edit everything on dPS so I’m very familiar with all the articles there too!

  • Orrelljet

    Another reflection of a flower inside drops of water; this time a tulip. Olympus EM1, with a macro lens 60mm f2.8, ISO 500, f/8, 1/5sec

  • Orrelljet

    Another reflection of a flower inside drops of water; this time a tulip. Olympus EM1, with a macro lens 60mm f2.8, ISO 500, f/8, 1/5sec

  • phil marino

    Sage flower with honey bee. Olympus OMD EM 10 Mark ii, 40-150 lens with 26 mm extension tube. f9, ISO 1000, 1/160 sec.

  • phil marino

    water drops on Lupine leaves. 1/125 sec, f11, ISO 1000, Olympus 40-150 lens with 26 mm extension tubes

    • Love the drop placement, did you do it or it was just like that?

      • phil marino

        Thanks. It was natural. Morning after a rain storm.

  • three pictures I took a while ago but which I particularly like.
    1) Nikon D80, 200mm, ISO 100, f/7.1 at 1.125 sec
    2) Nikon D80, 200mm, ISO 100, f/6.3 at 1.125 sec
    3) Nikon D80, 120mm, ISO 200, f/5.6 at 1.90 sec, cropped

  • phil marino

    One more photo. Poppy flower with morning rain drop. f9, 1/320 sec, ISO 1000, Olympus 40-150 lens with 26 mm extension tubes, 58mm.

  • Carina Widdifield Le

    A nice robin couple set up housekeeping in front of my kitchen window. I’ve been stalking them for a month! Nikon 105MM Micro, f3.2, 1/160 sec

    • P James

      I love the color, the contrasts in textures and the softness. Wonderful image.

      • Carina Widdifield Le

        Why thank you, James!

    • love the colors – have the babies come out yet?

      • Carina Widdifield Le

        Yes – they’ve flown the nest. They just grow up so fast . . . 😉

  • Carina Widdifield Le

    Iris – hand-held, ISO 400, F10, 1/100 sec

  • Mark Stanley-Adams

    Just upgraded from a Canon T5i to a 70D, and thought I’d use this month’s challenge as a springboard for getting to grips with it. I don’t use my macro lens very often, but this exercise has inspired me to dig it out more often. This image hopefully reveals some of the beautiful complexity of an orchid bloom. Uncropped and only slightly edited in Adobe Camera Raw… I added a little clarity and extended the white and black points to add some dynamic range.
    4 secs,f/11, ISO 100 through a Canon EF100mm lens.

  • Mark Stanley-Adams

    Another shot of the same orchid as below… same shooting info as before, except this was 2,5 sec exposure.

  • P James

    Leaf with rain water droplet. 60mm macro – monopod supported with speedlite illumination.

  • P James

    Rain water on a fir tree. A series of macros, all monopod supported and speedlite illumination. 60mm macro. It was a wet long weekend in Western Canada.

    • Karen Boggs

      I really love that first one.

      • P James

        Thanks Karen.

  • Robert

    Too late for challenge, did not know how to post pics. But wanted to see what everyone thought of my first attempt at macro. Taken with Canon t3, 1/50/f22/iso100/135mm length on 18/-135 lens.

    • P James

      Great colors. If you want to isolate the main flower by blurring our the background try using a wider aperture (smaller number) and faster shutter speed. The larger aperture will push the background out of focus but will maintain the color to create a nice contrast. Simple steps you may already be aware of but I think it will produce a more pleasing photograph.

  • Robert

    P James, thanks for the suggestions. I had taken this at 1/800/5.6 everything else the same. Probably should have posted it. I see what you mean about making the flowers stand out more with the background blurred.

  • Robert

    P James, thank you for the suggestions. I shot this one at 1/800/5.6 everything else the same. The flowers really stand out better with the background blurred.

    After uploading and posting not sure why the colors have changed. Thought I had done everything the same.

    • P James

      Well done. I like the results of the depth of field from the new pics. The background is diminished and doesn’t compete with the flower petals for your eye’s attention. It’s equally important to note that the smaller aperture can be really helpful in increasing your depth of field when shooting really tight macro’s, IE with an actual macro lens such as in Mark Stanley-Adams images of the orchids from a couple days ago. He’s shot using F11 which created more of the flower’s depth to be in focus. That’s important if you want the viewer to see the intricate detail of the flower when it has a deeper center well. A shallow depth of field can be seen in my most recent images, ie; Leaf with rain water droplet. I shot that with a 60mm macro lens at either F2.8 or F3.5. That large aperture gave me a shallow depth of field, essentially the water droplet. That’s what I was going for.
      I can’t help with any suggestions about the color shift when uploading here. It’s not anything I’ve ever experienced when uploading to these challenges. Are you using Disqus to upload?

    • did you process them at all? Using LR or PS? It looks like a color space issue. Like one is sRGB and the other is something else.

  • kerry
  • Jayanta Adhikari

    a common fly…. was sitting on a leaf…couldn’t get any closer than this…
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/2565d648bdccdb7b510c5ac1a86ff78e87996a112e8bcdb92d62c67a05012a31.jpg

Next Post:

Previous Post:

Featured Photography Special

4 Weeks to Better Photography

An online
photography class for beginners


Join the Photo Community

10 Photography Challenges

Participate in monthly photography challenges. Join our very interactive community, participate in challenges each month that help you stretch and grow. Learn new skills and make your photos "pop".

More Articles Here

All my past photography articles here.

We publish regularly, so if you'd like to posts sent directly to your inbox, just put your name and email into the big orange box at the top of this page.

Adobe Training

Learn how to use Lightroom
Learn how to use Photoshop