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Old Sep 15, 2011, 4:15 PM   #1
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Default Macro Help Needed

new to this so please forgive me if i am not posting this correctly and definitely need help with my new H2 with the MACRO

Viewed some great shots on one forum where people using this camera got GREAT macro's. For the life of me,, can be right on top of the creature and still can't get a decent super macro. Yes experimented but not getting the photos i know it can take. What i find i am doing is taking the shot and cropping it to make it 'enlarge'. Do i need to shoot in RAW format? rrgh Ok will upload a url where you can see the best macro so far but i really need help.

http://www.treknature.com/viewphotos.php?l=3&p=264230

below is how i would LIKE to take my macros (she has the same camera, asked her how she did it with no reply) she does describe in her note she used supermacro mode. Can get there...but you know..there is something i am not applying cuz i just can't reproduce super macros HELP anyone?

http://www.treknature.com/viewphotos.php?l=3&p=263284
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Old Sep 15, 2011, 6:26 PM   #2
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G'day drc

Getting spectacular images is like Tiger Woods or the Williams sisters playing sport ... it does not -ever- happen accidentally or by luck ... it's lots & lots of practice with both good tools & lots of knowledge. But you already know that !!

I would say that it starts with your camera work
I do not know what camera or lens system you have [you mention H2 but it does not ring bells for me] - so I need to make some presumptions

-IF- you have a superzoom then its lens system will give you one very good set of results ~ but with limitations; if you have an SLR the same applies with a differing set of limitations

Regardless of which camera/lens type you are using two issues come into play
1) depth of field at very close distances and
2) lens to subject distances

Taking 2) firstly... One of the problems I experience with super-closeups us that the front of the lens touches the subject all too easily - either rocks the petals or disturbs the insect. So, for good macro work, you need a lens system that 'holds-off' a bit from the subject. Not all cameras/lenses can do this
then 1) next ... Depth of Field is both needed to display the subject but too much can disturb the vision with oof backgrounds that take the eye away from the subject. For best results with macro work, something in the f8 ~ f16 range seems to work quite well ... whereas f22 gives great DoF + backgrounds while f4 gives almost no DoF but beaut fuzzy backgrounds

It is something that you need to experiment with over time

For either camera system, the use of a "close-up lens" attachment onto an existing lens, say a 12x superzoom OR a 50-250mm slr tele will start you off into the world of macro pix. The closeup lens does the focussing, and for example, a "+3 Dioptre" lens will focus at 1/3metre [13 inches] and you still have all the zoom of the main lens to change the image size. Cost about $50 to $150 depending on quality [Raynox is -great-]

For an SLR, you can use "extension tubes" ~ hollow tubes that are inserted between camera body & lens, and as they increase in mms, the point of focus gets closer & closer. Cost is about $75 for simple ones, $300 for ones that assist exposure & focus; and then you can go for a dedicated "macro" camera lens, specially designed for close-focus work ... but it's expensive too, setting you back about $1000+/-

Others on the forum can add more info for you ... best of luck in the future
Regards, Phil
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Recent images at http://www.flickr.com/photos/ozzie_traveller/sets/
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Old Sep 15, 2011, 10:06 PM   #3
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Default thanks Phil..needed that refresher

Did hear from the 'fly' owner in Sweden!!

He said he used the P mode on the FINEPIX HS20 EXR (fuji film) supermacro option and i found i had "tracking" on and DIDN'T REALIZE IT.
Went back and reset everything and now it appears to work WOOT WOOT!!

Now i see i have a RAW option too, do you ever take pics with that option and why would i? (i know another can of worms i need to sift through) lol

thanks again!
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Old Sep 16, 2011, 5:22 PM   #4
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G'day drc

You ask about 'raw' mode ... yes it's [potentially] a can if worms
I do not use raw at any time ... I do not have the time or inclination to spend hours of time at the keyboard at the end of a days shooting, playing with pp controls to adjust dozens / maybe several hundred images when "mr jpeg" will do it all for me at the moment of shooting

There certainly are images I see that are 'spectacular' - but I can also shoot in jpeg format and -if- I choose to do so, then with a bit of pp via levels, curves, saturation & sharpening, I can fine-tune the image to my satisfaction. However I choose which / how many images I do this with ... whereas if shooting in raw format, I must do this with every image in order to see its potential ~ and I can't be bothered with that

I'm a photographer - not a digital darkroom technician
Regards, Phil
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Has Fuji & Lumix superzoom cameras and loves their amazing capabilities
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Recent images at http://www.flickr.com/photos/ozzie_traveller/sets/
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