Macro Photography

Macro photography is photographing very close up, and it opens up a whole new world. It’s a world of fine details and very shallow depth of field that often goes unnoticed, even though it might be an image of something ordinary. For example, a $1 coin is more interesting when photographed using a macro lens, as shown in Figure 8.13.


8.13 Using a 105mm macro lens allowed me to get really close to this coin. The light was coming in from the left highlighting the edges. Exposure: ISO 6400, f/5.6, 1/40 second.

Specialized lenses are used in true macro photography. They produce a 1:1 view (this is the reproduction ratio, which is the subject size on the camera’s sensor in relation to the actual size of the subject) of the subject, but they are often expensive. There are other options, including close-up filters that screw onto the front of your lens, or you can crop using software in postproduction. When using a macro lens (Nikon calls them Micro lenses), you usually photograph very close to the subject. That means that even at f/5.6 or f/8.0, there is a very shallow depth of field. The small distance between the lens and the subject also means that keeping the camera locked into place is critical, which means using a tripod.


Some of the best subjects for macro photography occur in nature, especially flowers and insects. Take a closer look at the parts of ...

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