Some spiders
  • old4570
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    Some spiders

    by old4570 » Tue Dec 30, 2014 11:24 pm

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    Busiboy
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    Re: Some spiders

    by Busiboy » Wed Dec 31, 2014 6:58 am

    Love the creepy crawlies, might just be me, but is the flash a bit hot in these?

    Any particular reason for the 50mm macro and not something longer?
    *PPOK*
    C&C always welcome

    Scott
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    Re: Some spiders

    by old4570 » Wed Dec 31, 2014 9:26 am

    Aaargh ! The 50mm was cheap !

    And I have a 55mm AIS f2.8 micro , but was waiting on some teleconverters ( Which came just this moment ) for some 110mm Goodness .

    Yes , flash is a little hot , but its a very old one and putting on a diffuser is difficult due to the design ...
    + At night time the flash has a little more oomph
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    Re: Some spiders

    by beeb » Wed Dec 31, 2014 4:49 pm

    Firstly, I like this batch of shots. I'm going to offer a fair bit of critique here, but I'm not trying to be down on your images, just trying to present some different creative options or things to play around with... Hopefully that's ok! :) For starters the green leaf behind the spider in #1 is a bit of a distraction (for me), not so much that it's in the image but that it cuts through the subject. But otherwise the "poses" and compositions are quite nice. On a creative option note: Maybe a slightly more open aperture could creater softer backgrounds? Especially as you seem to have plenty of DOF for the subject, it could be something to try playing around with just for some different effects...

    I will also "+1" Scott's (Busiboy) comments on the flash being a bit "hot". Out of curiousity - What's different with the design of your flash compared to the conventional Nikon/Canon hot-shoe mount flash units?

    If it all possible, it's really worthwhile trying to adapt even a small diffuser onto the flash for a few of reasons:

    1) (While not always desirable) You can create a softer light on the subjects with less contrast, which can actually help reveal some of the finer details in darker areas in some subjects.
    2) Light fall off. (If I remember the theory correctly) With a diffuser in use, the light will fall away (loose intensity) more quickly over the same distance when compared to the light fall off from a bare flash. The means near-distance background objects are less brightly lit helping to seperate the subject out from the background.
    3) Easier to blend with natural light if you choose to mix in that to your shots.
    4) Creates a broader area to reflect. With the third shot you've posted in this thread for example, more of the web would be visible, due to having a larger lightsource lighting it, as the broader area of the diffuser helps "wrap" the light around the subject. In this shot it'd possibly also help to light the outer extremities of the spider too.

    Again, just little things to toy with if you can make it work for your flash. Even a home-made one made out of cereal-box cardboard, sticky-tape and some tracking paper will be enough just to trial some of the different techniques or "feels" available with a diffuser. It doesn't have to be pretty after all - It's not in the picture! :wink:

    While the longer focal length macros are handy for creating tighter focus/compositions of the subject and "flattening" perspectives, the 50mm/55mm macros are great for adding in a little extra context to the scene, or playing with the apparent scale of near and far objects thanks to being a bit of a wider angle. And they certainly look to be sharp judging from these examples!
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    Re: Some spiders

    by Busiboy » Wed Dec 31, 2014 8:52 pm

    To the above, off camera and a soft box for thesae subjects could be created with a cardbord box acquired from the front of bunnings, some alfoil for extra internal reflection and some cheap cloth from a material wholesaler.

    The most expensive part would be the off camera lead or trigger, you could get a c heap softbox on fleabay as well.
    *PPOK*
    C&C always welcome

    Scott
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    Re: Some spiders

    by old4570 » Wed Dec 31, 2014 8:56 pm

    Flash is a very old SUNPAK auto124 ...
    Its not meant to be a dedicated macro flash - merely a flash of convenience ..
    It works extremely well in daylight , but at night it has a little too much oomph
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    Re: Some spiders

    by beeb » Wed Dec 31, 2014 10:07 pm

    old4570 wrote:Flash is a very old SUNPAK auto124 ...
    Its not meant to be a dedicated macro flash - merely a flash of convenience ..
    It works extremely well in daylight , but at night it has a little too much oomph


    Won't really matter how old it is or what make/model it is, as long as it still fires it should do the trick. It's just a matter of adapting something onto it (that's why I was wondering what it was, I didn't know if it was some weird shape or something).

    For reference, these are the components I used when I was doing a lot of macro shots.

    (These links are from an American site, just used to show the products, prices here will vary wildly...)

    I used one of these: - It's a velcro strap with a slighty rubberised inside that grips the outside of the flash unit (I used/use it with Canon speedlights, but would work with most flashes with a similar sized head)
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/search?N= ... yes&sts=pi

    And combined it with one of these: - It's probably slightly too large for macro realistically, something around 6" should be ample at a guess...
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/search?N= ... yes&sts=pi

    And one of these to get it off camera and easily positionable (though you may not need the TTL flash-metering capability? I know I used to set mine manually whenever I was doing macros anyway...)
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/search?N= ... yes&sts=pi

    It's a very effective setup, and with a bit of DIY you could make a basic equivelant for a lot less money IMO. Basically just needs to be a cardboard housing (almost funnel shaped), either white paper or aluminium foil inside so the colour of the light isn't altered (and helps keep the light output up), plus some material that will diffuse the light (tracing paper or thin white cloth) over the wide opening, and a whole lot of tape to hold it together. Off camera flash cord is about the only thing that would cost you more than pocket change and time.
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    Re: Some spiders

    by old4570 » Wed Dec 31, 2014 11:28 pm

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    Sometimes I use a diffuser , some times I don't ...

    In 2015 I will be looking into using diffusers more , I know what your saying .
    But your ignoring what Im saying , that particular flash is not a Macro flash ...
    Its a flash of convenience .. Im not looking for it to be more ...
    Its simply a flash I throw on , especially for shorter lenses , when I need a flash for a non dedicated Macro camera .
    My macro cameras have dedicated flash set ups ( which could use diffusers at times ) and I will explore this more in 2015 .
    I have used diffusers , and found the ones I have tried lacking .. So more experimenting needed .

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    Image White is always hard ...

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  • old4570
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    Re: Some spiders

    by old4570 » Thu Jan 01, 2015 12:36 am

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