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Old Jun 18, 2011, 1:21 PM   #1
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Default E-PL1 macro shots using Image Stacking

The E-PL1 with it's live view system is made for this type closeup shooting, especially if you have the VF-2 and can put the camera at virtually any angle and use the finder anywhere from 0-90 degrees of tilt.

Unfortunately, most outdoor subjects are not since you have to take several exposures, preferably at the same exposure to look good, and varying light and wind conditions outdoors around here make it virtually impossible at any time, so you pick up some subjects and head indoors.

Shot using the 50mm f2 Macro Zuiko from my 4/3rd's DSLR outfit via the MMF-2 adapter. Captured RAW, processed in Adobe Camera RAW and stacked in Photoshop CS5..







For this last one, I added the EC20 teleconverter, giving me a 100mm f4 macro combination..

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Old Jun 18, 2011, 2:12 PM   #2
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.....this is incredible as far as I'm concerned. I cannot imagine making this happen myself. Surely you were paying attention during that seminar.
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Old Jun 18, 2011, 4:11 PM   #3
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These are indeed amazing photos... difficult to imagine shots like this being produced!
Should I ask what seminar it was there in Texas??
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Old Jun 18, 2011, 5:55 PM   #4
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Thanks, Wes.

I belong to a photo club at a nature preserve in far Noth Dallas and we had a macro specialist give a presentation and slide show of his work last weekend and he uses focus stacking in shooting all of his macros. I had brought it up earlier in the week over on the Olympus DSLR forum. His images were amazing. There was one image he showed that was a composite of 99 shots of the same object where he had staggered the focus across the image to where , when combined into one file, it was tack sharp front to back. The most I used on any of these was 14 for the last image.

This particular pro uses (suprise, suprise) Canon equipment, and he utilizes the live view on the back LCD for the very reason why I like using the Pen to shoot these. The live view+manual focus assist makes getting the focus exactly where you want it a piece of cake. I also use live view with my E5 DSLR, but live view is just a smoother operation with the Pen, especially when you add the eyelevel VF2 finder.
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Old Jun 18, 2011, 6:00 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boBBrennan View Post
.....this is incredible as far as I'm concerned. I cannot imagine making this happen myself. Surely you were paying attention during that seminar.
That first image, I think there's a thin area near the front where I didn't quite get it "right" and there's some softness I am not entirely happy with, but for the most part it's amazing how easy doing it is. The longest part of the process after you've taken the time getting all the shots is simply combining the individual images into one multi-layered file in Photoshop. Once that's done, the auto align and auto blend functions take very little time in doing their thing.
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Old Jun 18, 2011, 10:00 PM   #6
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In astronomy, they use Registax to stack pictures for noise reduction... I've never heard of it being used for focus sharpness at different depth's/layers in a photo... can't quite picture it- but the results are simply amazing!
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Old Jun 18, 2011, 10:21 PM   #7
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Photoshop certainly makes it easy enough. Here are the seven files I used to create the second shot I posted..

http://gmchappell.smugmug.com/Other/...506834_ntLd8gd

If you follow the images files, file number by file number, focus runs from front to back and that's how you have to align the layers before running the Alignment and auto blend commands. This link tells more about focus stacking in Photoshop..

http://www.digital-photography-schoo...focus-stacking

If you have Photoshop or Lightroom and follow the steps I outlined in the link below, you can download the above images and do exactly what I did..

http://forums.steves-digicams.com/ol...one-tried.html
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Old Jun 19, 2011, 5:04 AM   #8
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hi Greg,

Thanks for the educational post.I'm going to have to give this process a try.

As for your photos, like I've said in the past, Olympus should pay you for your work. Your photos are wonderful advertising for their equipment.

That last image is simply amazing in detail.

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