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Thread: Macro or close up

  1. #1
    pinakibaidya's Avatar
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    Macro or close up

    Sometimes i get confused with the two terms.I have one dedicated macro lens but i love the close up shots taken with nikkor 18-55mm.Depth of field is so shallow with macro lens that i can't get an object e.g.flower completely in sharp focus.What do you suggest for macro /close up work?Below is an image taken with nikkor 18-55mm which i love so much.Macro or close up

  2. #2

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    Andre Burger

    Re: Macro or close up

    Looking at Makro shots I think the idea is to get a focus point in sharp focus, the rest is out fo focus.
    Combine ZM is software for stitching makros, free download - try it.

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    Gillie Bengough

    Re: Macro or close up

    I think that close up shots are 1:10 down to nearly life size, 1:1; a true macro lens will produce images at life size and greater - extreme close up magnification.

    It depends on how you are trying to interpret the subject, but it you use a very large aperture with your macro lens you will get very little in focus; that may be how you want to present it. In order to get more in focus, you need a small aperture; this will mean a loss of light, so a tripod is essential, in order to be able to use a longer shutter speed. The best macro shots of insects, for example, and in my opinion, are totally in focus, so that you can see every hair on their bodies - creepy but amazing.
    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 8th July 2012 at 01:15 AM.

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    Re: Macro or close up

    There are a number of programmes which can align multiple stacked layers from different focus points then auto merge them. Or you can do a hand merge using masks.

    Some commonly used software can allow you to do this. For example, I can achieve what I want with Adobe CS5.

    The problem is that you need a totally still subject, not outdoors with a breeze blowing.

    Using a narrow aperture with a macro lens will help to increase focus depth but it can still be rather shallow.

    I use a 'proper macro' lens for really close shots of insects etc (Sigma 180 macro in my case) but for general flower shots I often prefer my fairly close focusing Canon 24-105 L lens.

    You seem to be managing quite well at the moment for overall flower shots.

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    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Macro or close up

    EXIF for above shot: Nikon D60, 200mm, Auto exposure, Aperture-priority AE, 1/125 sec, f/6.3, ISO 400

    You could try f/11 or f/16 on this to get more Depth of Field, but the consequent increase in exposure time may give other problems if there is any subject movement, as Geoff mentions. Off-camera, diffuse flash may help, but I have tried it so there may be pitfalls to this idea.

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    pinakibaidya's Avatar
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    Re: Macro or close up

    Geoff, thanks for your suggestion.Now i understand that close focussing lens is better for large flowers and macro lens for small insects or like that.Thank u all.I am sorry.Actually the pic was taken with Sigma 18-200mm not with 18-55 nikkor.

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    Re: Macro or close up

    Until recently I took all my close up pictures withthe Sigma 18-200, and it did a really good job.

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    Re: Macro or close up

    Just one extra thought. If you are using a relatively close focusing zoom lens, adding an extension tube will get you a bit closer. And with no added problems, except a bit of money.

    I started getting serious with macro photography by adding a 25 mm tube to my 70-300 lens.

    There is quite a bit of information on extension tubes in these forums if you do a search.

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