Macro Fly Photography - A Process

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William Anderson
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Re: Macro Fly Photography - A Process

Post by William Anderson » Tue May 19, 2015 9:48 pm

Mataura mayfly wrote:William, extension rings are good, a set of three can give some pretty interesting combinations.
But to have some real fun, you need a bellow tube. ;)
Jeff, I've looked at those and I can't imagine using it although I know a coin collector who used one. I really think I'm nearing the simplification I'm looking for. I have the extension rings on the way and would like to try a ring light, but my current lighting is working out. This is the fun part.
"A man should not try to eliminate his complexes, but rather come into accord with them. They are ultimately what directs his conduct in the world." Sigmund Freud.
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Re: Macro Fly Photography - A Process

Post by William Anderson » Tue May 19, 2015 9:49 pm

DOUGSDEN wrote:William,
I have been following your thread and reading with great interest.
A photographer wanna be,
Doug
Doug, your thoughtfulness and encouragement are always very much appreciated. We've all made strides in the quality of our pics since this site started. I've really enjoyed seeing your recent contributions.
"A man should not try to eliminate his complexes, but rather come into accord with them. They are ultimately what directs his conduct in the world." Sigmund Freud.
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Re: Macro Fly Photography - A Process

Post by William Anderson » Tue May 19, 2015 10:01 pm

Carl, your comments were very helpful. I was hoping to get that kind of information from the likes of you. Your camera/lens set up sounds great. I'll be curious to see if my 40mm Macro lens with an extension tube will work, or if the tube will be best attached to the 55mm prime lens. I just learned my local camera shop will rent a Nikon N 100mm Macro lens to me for the weekend for $50. Once I get a solid feel for the camera and what I'm really looking to do, i will definitely take a look at that. Spending $300-$900 bucks on a bigger lens isn't in the cards and I don't see it happening but I have no doubt I can make this current arrangement work.

I struggled quite a bit on the consistency issue and I was using the same rig. It only takes a minor adjustment to gum up the works. I do fear that I'll have a problem with content for my own site if I never land on a style or intent. I don't mind the flux, but resolution is nice too. Maybe I'll keep trying to achieve shots like Hans for the site but I'm enjoying the slate poses and may go that route from here on. Hopefully in the process of working out the technical capacity, I'll gravitate toward a photographic style.

Thanks for the recommendation on the books. I did see that set but I haven't heard anything about them. I'll have to put them on a birthday gift list.
"A man should not try to eliminate his complexes, but rather come into accord with them. They are ultimately what directs his conduct in the world." Sigmund Freud.
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Re: Macro Fly Photography - A Process

Post by William Anderson » Tue May 19, 2015 10:29 pm

This is always a surprise and maybe something to be cautious of. This is the same fly and in each context it leaves a very different impression to my eye. I think I'm most comfortable "reading" a fly in the same orientation as it's constructed in the vise. The final frame of an SBS. For certain the shots against the blue are clearer and make it much easier to imagine constructing the fly. More about documentation and describing how to reproduce the thing.

Original 2011
Image

Slate 2015
Image

White 2015
Image

I'll have to keep playing with the overall impression. Working out the best presentation and legibility for soft-hackles is going to be a real challenge.
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Re: Macro Fly Photography - A Process

Post by William Anderson » Tue May 19, 2015 11:02 pm

I took some time today sitting indoors by a south facing window on an overcast day and got some pics without any other light source. The results were amazing, I never achieved that kind of result with my older compact. I shot about 75 shots of a single fly just testing the potential. This is another fly from Nemes' fly box. A quick note, I actually turned down the vibrancy and the saturation on this fly in most images, it's just so bright it looks like photo editing shenanigans, but it's quite the opposite.


This was shot indoors under the two Ott lights I've always used.
Image


This was shot next to the window using only the natural light with an aluminum foil card opposite the window.
Image

Speaking of the aluminum reflector, Because I moved one of the Ott lights from below the fly as in the old set up, it's now placed to the right and I've covered a small greeting card with aluminum foil as a reflector to brighten the other shade side of the fly. Below are some shots where I've simply moved the reflector around the fly. I see professional photographers using silver, gold and white reflectors for portrait work. A gold reflector might cast a warmer tone on the flies.


Card sitting to the left of the lens, at an angle in front of the fly
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Card sitting directly opposite the window and perpendicular to the fly
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Card sitting back to the left and behind the fly
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Reflector replaced with a sheet of white paper rather close and concave enveloping the fly
Image


I was hoping to replace a light source with a mirror, but I never made it work. The aluminum foil on the card is exactly what I was trying to achieve. Go figure.
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Re: Macro Fly Photography - A Process

Post by Old Hat » Tue May 19, 2015 11:29 pm

I love working with natural light. I have a south facing window that I often shoot by that has wooden blinds so I can adjust the amount of light coming in.

I also use a lot of different colored scrap book paper for backgrounds and fill in areas. I found one that is metallic and works great for light reflection and can be bent around the subject as well. I use all the time under my flies when just taking vise shots as well.

That second shot of the yellow fly with the card to the left of the lens is spot on to my eye. The shadow, color richness and contrast is awesome.
I hate it when I think I'm buying organic vegetables, and when I get home I discover they are just regular donuts.
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Re: Macro Fly Photography - A Process

Post by fly_fischa » Thu May 21, 2015 7:51 pm

Heya Will, interesting thread buddy, I love photography. Without boring everyone to death by getting über technical I thought I'd touch on the lens sweet spot and sharpness mentioned by a few people including Lance (his experiment with stamps is a good way of learning for a visual person). Everyone has their theories about the sweet spot wether they read it somewhere or someone told someone...
In terms of loss of sharpness it's all about diffraction pure and simple. There's no point me elaborating, google was my friend and I think Ken Rockwell has put it nicely in this article. You can get a rough idea after reading the introductory paragraphs or delve deeper if you wish.
http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/lens-sharpness.htm

The reviews he has listed on most lenses are also quite helpful and worth reading if you don't intend to do the leg work yourself. Giving an indication of distortion, fall off and photoshop lens correction filter details where required.

My 2cents worth :ugeek:
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Re: Macro Fly Photography - A Process

Post by daringduffer » Fri May 22, 2015 10:15 am

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Re: Macro Fly Photography - A Process

Post by Old Hat » Fri May 22, 2015 6:50 pm

The second one down on the far left column is going to be eaten in any moment!
I hate it when I think I'm buying organic vegetables, and when I get home I discover they are just regular donuts.
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Re: Macro Fly Photography - A Process

Post by fly_fischa » Fri May 22, 2015 8:22 pm

Oops although an interesting read I think I posted the wrong link, my bad.
Here's the one I originally intended :oops:
http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/diffraction.htm

Interesting link dd, very different approach...
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