Oxford School of Photography

insights into photography

9 creative photo ideas to try in March

Digital Camera World has a few ideas to get you shooting now the weather is starting to improve.

Creative_photo_ideas_for_March_2014_DCM149.tenthings.brian_valentine

Creative Photo Ideas for March: 01 Shoot a dewdrop flower refraction

This is one of those shots that many macro photographers attempt, but few master. But with the right conditions and some essential kit, beautiful refraction images are within everyone’s reach.

“You need a minimum of a 1:1 macro lens with a set of extension tubes so you are shooting at 2:1 magnification or higher plus a flash set up,” says retired PhD microbiologist and celebrated macro photographer Brian Valentine.

To achieve this sort of magnification, 68mm of extension tubes fitted to a 100mm macro lens should do the trick.

“Shoot in Manual with exposure settings of around 1/200 sec at f/8-f/11, ISO somewhere between 100 and 400,” Brian continues, “and place the flower around one flower diameter behind the drops.”

For instance, if you’re shooting a daisy that’s 2cm in diameter, the optimum position is around 2cm from the dewdrops. Check the position through the viewfinder; if you need to adjust it, remember that the flower is upside-down in the dewdrop.

If you want both the droplets and the refracted flower to be in focus, you’ll need to use focus stacking.

This involves taking several pictures, nudging the camera backwards and forwards between each frame to cover all the points that you want to appear sharply focused.

“Shooting a sequence to get a good focus stack is the hardest part,” admits Brian.

Find out more here

 

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