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Old 01-17-2010, 11:33 AM
ShootingSight ShootingSight is offline
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 291

You are right on - there are two key aspects to macro photography:

1. Small aperture, which will give you a big depth of field. Most cameras can go into apreture priority mode ("A" on most) - even a cheap camera. In aperture priority, chose a big number = a small aperture at least greater than f/16. This gives you good depth of field, so the whole part is in focus.
2. Indirect light. A flash will produce bright spots on those parts of the subject that reflect right back into the camera lens, which will both wash out those spots, and fool the camera into thinking it is getting sufficient light, so it reduces the lens open time, underexposing the picture. Your options are to go with either continuous light (I recommend halogen lights, which are slightly more blue - incandescent lights have a brown/orange color) - and this will require a long exposure; or else use a flash, but be sure to bounce it off a wall/ceiling/or a big piece of white poster board to make it diffuse. If you have a small digital camera with a built-in flash that is pointing right at the subject, at a very minimum tape a small piece of white paper to the camera, so it is 2-3" away from the flash. Better is to tape a small piece of mirror or polished stainless or aluminum foil, so the flash is directed upward. Then get a white piece of poster board above you, so the flash hits the poster board and makes the whole thing bright white. The light coming off the white board is diffuse and will reduce the reflections off your part.


Last edited by ShootingSight; 01-17-2010 at 11:36 AM.
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