It’s all in the detail

This is the time of year when the main attraction is largely missing. The birds are hiding away moulting. The animals too are hidden in the dense undergrowth of summer. This is when the insects, spiders and all the other “micro-beasts” come into their own, and this is when the photographer turns to the so called macro lens. I’m puzzled by the terminology. Why not “micro” photography? Apparently the name refers to very large images (macro)of very small subjects (micro). Ah, the mysteries of jargon.

Whatever we call it, I have been experimenting with close-up photography for a while, but not really got to grips with it until this week. This is partly because, although I had the lens last summer (Sigma 105 f2.8) I didn’t have a full-frame camera to make best use of it. More importantly though I hadn’t taken the trouble to learn how to do it. Rather than bore you with all the ins and outs, here are a few examples I’m pleased with together with the technical details. I magnified the image in the viewfinder and used manual focus for all the tripod ones. The camera is my recently bought Canon 5Dmk4 and the lens the Sigma 105.

Japanese anemone 1/320 f3.5 ISO 125 tripodMicro spider 1/320 f2.8 ISO 320 tripodAnother micro spider 1/320 f2.8 ISO 320 tripodSeeds of Rose Bay Willow Herb. 1/500 f8 ISO 500 tripodPainted Lady on Valerian 1/640 f4 ISO 100 hand heldSame subject 1/640 f3.2 ISO 100 hand heldSame subject 1/1600 f3.2 ISO 320 hand heldSame subject 1/1600 f2.8 ISO 600 hand held

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