Saturday, October 13, 2012

Looking at the world through a Macro Lens

When I first started seriously getting into photography I was often asked the dreaded question, "what type of photographer are you?"  And as I fumbled around with my words, basically naming off every type of photography out there, I realized I needed to find my niche.  I started experimenting with all different types, ranging from portraits to nature and everything in between.  I also experimented (and practiced) with my different lenses.  My husband is the one who insisted we get a macro lens and at the time I wasn't the least bit interested.  I actually became quite frustrated with it because I did not understand the technical side of the lens.  But now.... I am in love <3

Frangipani Bloom after a Summer Rain Shower ~ Ft. Lauderdale, FL
ISO 200 ~ 60mm ~ f/7.1 ~ 1/80 sec

If I could shoot only with my macro lens I would be in heaven.  Some say that macro photography isn't real photography because you don't have to hike to the top of a mountain to get a breathtaking photo such as in landscape photography.  I would have to disagree.  I think macro photography is a beautifully artistic form of expression and vital to the world of photography.

When shooting with a macro lens, your depth of field is very small, so your focus and composition have to be perfect.  There is also the issue of light and the sun.  Even more so with macro photography, you have to have the sun in the perfect spot or your composition will look dull and boring.  Sometimes I would see something I would want to shoot, but would have to wait and plan for the sun to be in the perfect spot and come back and shoot then. And then there is the topic of the wind.  Even the slightest breeze can blur your subject.  Usually I use manual focus when I am shooting macro, and when the breeze moves my subject I find myself frustrated because I don't have a third hand to stabilize what I am trying to shoot.  

It is the combination of patience, focus, composition, lighting, and a love for it that will make your macro photos stand out above the rest.  In a time where social media and phone applications like instagram, flood the photography scene with images that are less than professional, it calls us to step up our game to make our images rise above.

What I love most about macro photography is that it takes someone with patience who will slow down and look at everything on a detailed level.  I find that it is so easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life... that being forced to slow down and "smell the roses" so to speak, is just what I needed.

Yesterday I had plans to shoot some macro photos of the gorgeous fall leaves in my neighborhood ~ but with the 20+ mph winds, I had to scratch that plan.  So today I will try again.

I always have my macro lens with me wherever I am going because I never know when I will see that diamond in the rough <3

I also wanted to add a blog post on this very subject that I love <3  Check it out -> Anne Rusk Photography Blog

Happy Shooting!



  1. You have a very intuitive husband! Kados to him for his focused and insightful addtion to your lens collection!

    1. I agree, he is completely intuitive and pretty cute too, so I can't complain!

  2. Very well said! I am hoping to get out today as well since it is overcast, but the wind is moving the clouds along, so it could be challenging. I might head to the botanic garden since right now the succulents are on display (and not as moved by the wind!). Happy shooting!

    1. I went to the US Botanic Gardens a few weeks back and the orchids were in bloom ~ I love that you can go somewhere like that and capture the most beautiful blooms completely offseason! Enjoy!