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Tips And Tricks For Capturing Macro Wildlife

Macro photography involves shooting small subjects at high magnification. This presents two challenges. First, as well as the subject being magnified, so are its movements, which will blur the image unless everything can be kept still or fast shutter speeds can be used. Then there is the depth of field, which will be shallow, so the point of focus must be precisely controlled. Here are some handy tips.

Keep stable – Whenever possible, mount the camera on a tripod to minimise camera shake, if a tripod is impractical – perhaps because you are tracking a moving subject – then try to stabilise your own position by leaning into a solid support such as a tree or wall.

Calliphora Portrait
Calliphora Portrait

Stay focused – If your camera is set to auto-focus it’s likely to focus on the wrong part. It’s often best to switch the camera to manual focus and to use live-view on the screen to observe focus in fine detail. If photographing a small creature, then the point of focus should be on the eye closest to the camera.

Create good lighting – To obtain the ideal combination of a small aperture (to give best depth of field) and a fast shutter speed (to freeze movement), you will need a lot of light. Ideal lighting for macro work is a ring flash. This uniformly lights the subject and provides high levels of subject illumination.

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