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08-07-2010, 09:30 AM   #1
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Lens: smc PENTAX-M Macro 100mm f/4 Camera: K20D Photo Location: Lancaster, NY ISO: 200 Shutter Speed: 1/45s Aperture: F4 

My new avatar. I'm interested in opinions because I don't do much macro.

I found this leafhopper sitting on the white railing of my house, and he continued to sit there as I set up my tripod and gear. I PP's out some spider web stuck to his antennae, but that is actually the angle he was sitting at while looking at me.

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Last edited by GregK8; 08-07-2010 at 09:39 AM. Reason: typos
08-07-2010, 09:50 AM   #2
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I really like the composition here, but it looks like the colors could be made stronger to produce a stronger overall appeal. Other than that, I think that this is a very successful shot!

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08-07-2010, 10:05 AM   #3
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I would like to see more sharpness, at least up front. The lens is a great lens, but getting any DOF requires a aperture more forgiving that f4, even with a tripod. I would try some different settings....move up to f16 or somewhere in that area.
I would also like to see some background color, which would add some context to the subject.
Shooting macro is fun, and the more you shoot the better you get. Using flash can also get you those tough shots where lighting is poor.....just try more DOF and shoot a lot! I prefer hand held shooting with SR, because a tripod set up limits the composition.....by the time you get set up, the subject is often gone.....but a tripod is no doubt better for some shots. Try some hand held with flash and see what you get?
Here is one where I had a shallow DOF, but enough to get the part I wanted in focus. I was using an old 645 120 Macro on my K20D, so stopped down to f16 or so gives you a dark screen and makes Macro very difficult...you don't have that problem, so you can pick this up pretty quickly.
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08-07-2010, 10:32 AM   #4
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Thanks for posting guys.

Where my head was at (right or wrong) was I thought the stark contrast between the out of focus white railing and the green of the insect would make for a bit uniqueness to the image.

I'm afraid I don't have the hand steadiness required for tack sharp hand held macro, which is one of the reasons I tend not to try it. I usually have to crank the iso to get a fast enough shutterspeed to overcome it, and that usually ends up in an unusably noisy image.

08-07-2010, 11:09 AM   #5
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Well, hand held works best for me, but I do understand what you are saying. One little trick that helps me a lot is to use a small LCD flashlight tethered to the tripod mount by a short strip if bailing wire and a screw for the tripod mount...#14 copper house wiring works good too. You can flex the light to any direction as you focus on the subject and see it much more clearly in dim light. It also allows a little less use of the higher ISO settings. Those little lights are dirt cheap, and it is easy to make a set up in a few minutes. Worth a try.....there are millions of Macro opportunities out here just waiting...have fun!
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08-08-2010, 10:38 PM   #6
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i agree. color would hide the point of interest. stay with the white background. a more saturated green would help however
08-08-2010, 10:43 PM   #7
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For me the area of biggest improvement is the lighting - it appears too diffuse or even backlit here, taking away from the detail and texture of the critter.
Sharpness and DoF as mentioned are aspects needing attention also.
But otherwise a good capture.
08-08-2010, 11:27 PM   #8
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Looks really rather soft and washed out IMO

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