Fun with Macro photography

May 4, 2010 at 2:50 pm Leave a comment

So I own a nice zoom/macro photography lens for my Nikon D60 but I realized last night that I’ve never figured out how to use the macro function of it.  So I grabbed slapped it on the camera a couple nights ago to see what kind of photos I could get with it.  I decided to just start taking pictures instead of reading the manual (because that’s the way I roll) and finally found that if I want my mini to take up the entire frame of the camera I’ve got to take the picture from about 4-5 feet away (!).  So now I feel slightly foolish taking pictures of a 1 inch tall metal man from the other side of the room.

Here are the two results once I got the lighting reasonable.  The first is macro with ambient light, the second is with the flash and the third is the one taken with my generic everything lens.

You probably can’t tell any real difference between the three photos.  They are pretty similar once I export them into something a little more web-friendly than the 2MB files they start out as.  The real difference between the three photos (and the power of the macro lens) is in the raw files that I’m working with before I post them up to WordPress.  What you don’t get to see is the fact that the third picture is cropped and blown up, while the first two are untouched (other than compressed to 600 x 400 to post to the web).  If I try to blow the third picture up any more, it will get all fuzzy and not look very good.  On the first two I could crop out just the head and blow it up to 600 x 400 and still get decent results (from a photography standpoint.  The painting would look plenty ugly!)

So overall, the macro lens is cool, but it becomes a real pain to change the angle of the picture.  When my camera is only a foot away from the mini I’m photographing, if I want a different angle I can just move the camera and tripod over a couple inches.  If I’m 4 – 5 feet away with the macro lens, to get a slightly different angle I have to move the camera a couple of feet, which is a pain in a room full of furniture.

Overall, I think I’m going to stick with my normal lens since it’s easier to use and I get decent results with it.  I’m definitely going to break out the macro lens every now and again just to see what kind of results I can get.


Entry filed under: Photography.

April Painting Statistics Macro photography part 2

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Welcome to Mini Painting for Free. Do you have way too many miniatures like I do? Send me one or two! I'll paint them up, photograph them, post about them and then send them back. The best part? All you have to pay is shipping to get the miniatures to me in New Hampshire, USA. I'll supply the time, paint and the return postage. Have something you want me to work on? Send me an email at and let me know.

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