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The Cactus, The Bokeh & The Orchid
Posted By: rustynail925, 02-24-2010, 06:24 AM

I included the orchid in the series so i wont have to post another thread for the orchid. I tried different perspective shots on the cactus using my newly acquired Tamron 90mm macro, the 3rd lens ive bought since January 2010. Love the colors & bokeh of the lens. So hopefully no more lens buying

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02-24-2010, 08:21 AM   #2
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Depth of Field is a killer eh? I assume these are handheld so you cant do a heck of a lot. You managed to nail the composition/focus issues with 4-7, but the wider shots of the cactus would be outstanding with a little more DOF. Have you tried focus stacking? If I know I wont have the depth I just put the camera in continuous shooting, manual focus, and kind of 'wave' back and forth ever so slightly over quite a few frames. After that it's a bit of photoshopping (or any layer-editor) to paint in the sharpness, but honestly it gets old to do it to all your shots. There is something called Helicon focus though...

The orchid is the best subject, and you got the DOF just right there, but the blurred one in the background detracts. Could you have moved the one behind out of the way? Orchids are brittle and expensive though; another trick is to pick a big green leaf from somewhere and block out pesky backgrounders with it, and it also helps to have ten arms Still, a good shot just for nailing the main flower's focus.
02-24-2010, 09:54 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by JesseDavis Quote
Depth of Field is a killer eh? I assume these are handheld so you cant do a heck of a lot. You managed to nail the composition/focus issues with 4-7, but the wider shots of the cactus would be outstanding with a little more DOF. Have you tried focus stacking? If I know I wont have the depth I just put the camera in continuous shooting, manual focus, and kind of 'wave' back and forth ever so slightly over quite a few frames. After that it's a bit of photoshopping (or any layer-editor) to paint in the sharpness, but honestly it gets old to do it to all your shots. There is something called Helicon focus though...
What is focus stacking?

Thanks for the suggestion ill try wider shot next time..
Some are handheld and some i use a tripod. shots are from f2.8 - f8.. Its really hard to focus w/ out a tripod.. ive taken some blurry shots due to handshake and pretty hard to focus on the thin spines..
02-24-2010, 12:41 PM   #4
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if you are on a tripod, just stop it down to an insanely small F number, set the drive mode to 2 sec timer (for the mirror up) and a long exposure, and dont let anyone move around you and stop the wind blowing (praying works, I hear). My FA 100 loses shapness down past f16 or so though ymmv.

focus stacking is where you take a few shots at different focus increments and put them together in software. I do it manually in photoshop with layers and masks and a bit of transform, but there is software that does it automatically. Its a pain but can save a shot. If you just keep your finger down in drive mode natural body sway from breathing or whatnot usually gives you a few different areas of sharpness at macro DOF, or you can ever so slightly shift the focus ring as you shoot.

here is an example; the berry center, the outlines, the front of the top of it, and the stem are all from different shots, it took less than an hour in photoshop, handheld at f2.8:


02-25-2010, 04:58 PM   #5
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Thanks for the advice Jesse. thats a nice example btw
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