Start learning with our library of video tutorials taught by experts. Get started

The Practicing Photographer

Shooting macro bug photos with a reversed lens


From:

The Practicing Photographer

with Ben Long

Video: Shooting macro bug photos with a reversed lens

Not a lot of people know this, but Oklahoma has really great sounding bugs. so I wanted to just talk a little bit about that.
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 7m 18s
    1. Shooting a successful self portrait with a phone
      7m 18s
  2. 1m 35s
    1. Introducing The Practicing Photographer
      1m 35s
  3. 5h 10m
    1. Choosing a camera
      5m 27s
    2. Looking at light as a subject
      2m 22s
    3. Using a small reflector to add fill light
      5m 45s
    4. Editing photo metadata with PhotosInfo Pro for iPad
      6m 30s
    5. Let your lens reshape you
      7m 26s
    6. Compositing street photography images with Photoshop
      7m 44s
    7. Expand your filter options with step-up and step-down rings
      3m 56s
    8. Shooting without a memory card
      3m 6s
    9. Give yourself a year-long assignment
      5m 28s
    10. Working with reflections
      1m 26s
    11. Exploring mirrorless cameras
      7m 25s
    12. Batch processing photos with the Adobe Image Processor
      7m 30s
    13. Limiting yourself to a fixed-focal-length lens
      2m 13s
    14. Creating tiny worlds: Shooting technique
      4m 15s
    15. Creating tiny worlds: Post-processing techniques
      11m 41s
    16. Shooting macro shots on an iPhone
      3m 18s
    17. Using a tripod
      3m 33s
    18. Wildlife and staying present
      5m 58s
    19. Batch exposure adjustments on raw files
      6m 52s
    20. Why Shoot Polaroid
      11m 12s
    21. Seizing an opportunity
      4m 4s
    22. Four photographers do a light-as-subject exercise
      12m 24s
    23. Shooting macro bug photos with a reversed lens
      4m 54s
    24. Varnishing a photo for a painterly effect
      13m 36s
    25. Shooting wildlife
      7m 24s
    26. Discussion on how to shoot architecture
      12m 27s
    27. Using a lens hood
      4m 48s
    28. Working with themes
      2m 48s
    29. Setting up an HDR time lapse
      7m 55s
    30. Processing an HDR time lapse
      7m 55s
    31. Two perspectives on travel photography
      12m 28s
    32. Scanning Photos
      5m 37s
    33. Photo assignment: shooting an egg
      3m 13s
    34. Reviewing the egg shot images
      6m 47s
    35. Shooting in your own backyard
      4m 38s
    36. Jpeg iPad import process
      3m 17s
    37. Shooting a product shot in open shade
      9m 34s
    38. Reviewing the product shot images
      4m 5s
    39. Warming up
      3m 26s
    40. Taking a panning action shot
      10m 17s
    41. Scanning polaroid negatives and processing in Photoshop
      8m 17s
    42. Shooting a silhouette
      3m 9s
    43. Going with an ultra-light gear configuration
      5m 29s
    44. Working with masks and calculations in Photoshop
      12m 38s
    45. Working with flash for macro photography
      4m 55s
    46. Colorizing a black and white photo in Photoshop
      5m 10s
    47. Using duct tape and zip ties in the field
      4m 14s
    48. When the on camera flash is casting a shadow
      3m 4s
    49. Using Lightroom on the road
      6m 28s
    50. Listening to your camera to get good exposure
      2m 20s

Watch this entire course now—plus get access to every course in the library. Each course includes high-quality videos taught by expert instructors.

Become a member
Please wait...
The Practicing Photographer
5h 19m Appropriate for all May 16, 2013 Updated Apr 17, 2014

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In The Practicing Photographer, photographer and teacher Ben Long shares a weekly serving of photographic instruction and inspiration. Each installment focuses on a photographic shooting scenario, a piece of gear, or a software technique. Each installment concludes with a call to action designed to inspire you to pick up your camera (or your mouse or smartphone) to try the technique for yourself.

Subject:
Photography
Author:
Ben Long

Shooting macro bug photos with a reversed lens

Not a lot of people know this, but Oklahoma has really great sounding bugs. That may sound strange but there's just, you here all these really weird noises while we're here. and I want to shoot some of them. So this week on Practicing Photographer, I wanta talk a little bit about shooting macro-photos of bugs. And you know there's never a bug around when you need one. The hotel room's full of them, it seems like. They're, they're always biting me and things like that. But now that I'm out, looking for them I'm not finding any of them.

And if you've tried any macro bug, photography, that may be what you've found also. I did not, come here, expecting, to shoot macro. So I didn't bring a macro lens. I did though, bring my, macro lens reversal ring. So, what I've got here, is my normal 24 to 105 millimeter lens flipped around backwards, which turns it into a very capable macro lens. If this is all news to you, if it's a complete mystery that you can do this, check out my Lens-Reversal Macro course. It explains this whole thing that I'm doing.

And I've set up my camera right now with my lens reversed at f16, trying to get as much depth of field as possible. So my hope has been to find some bugs. I can hear them all around me. As I take a step, I'm kind of aware of them jumping away from me, but as I'm stopping and looking around, I'm, I'm not finding any. So, if you've gone out macro shooting, you may have encountered this same thing. Although there's a bee on this flower right now. so I wanted to just talk a little bit about that. You go online and you see these, beautiful macro bug pictures. How do people get them? Do they have special equipment and or special techniques or anything like that? Certainly.

a really nice macro lens can be a great advantage. Although lens reversal ring, is a very effective way, of shooting macro shots. The biggest thing that people who get those great, macro bug shots have is patience. Just extreme, extreme patience. and a lot of time on their hands. It is hard oh, he's back, and he's covered with pollen. It is hard finding bugs to shoot. Now, there are some things you can do to improve your chances of finding some. I'm out here at about three in the afternoon.

It's pretty much the hottest part of the day and a lot of the bugs just left. The went to, I don't know, somewhere air conditioned. And so, they're just not around. A lot of the bugs go dormant during the hot part of the day. The best time to find bugs in the summer time is going to be in the early morning and late evening. A lot of them come out to hunt or to feed, It's cooler, so they're a little more active. So if you really want to do some bug shooting, you should try getting up very early in the morning. Some bugs, particularly in the spring and fall, will really slow down in the colder parts of the day. Bees, especially, you have an easier time shooting.

If you get out when it's still cool. of course the other problem with bugs is they move all the time. Just when you get your shot ready, they take off and leave. There's no trick to that. You've got to learn to work quickly and you've got to have a whole lot of patience. The other problem is simply finding them, particularly if you're interested in spiders. There are, spiders will hide under bits of grass and things like that. You've really, it's like hunting mushrooms. You've just got to really stay focused on the ground and wait. Til you see something. Very often you might see a spider but it's not actually in a good configuration for shooting. It's underneath something, things like that.

Lay down on the ground. Line up your shot and wait. You may be laying there for 15 minutes before it actually moves into some position where you can get a good shot of it. If you've been doing that and going. Wow, this is tedious and boring and really difficult, there's got to be a better way. If you want to shoot a bug in it's natural environment, that's just what you gotta do, you're not doing anything wrong. You might also give up on the idea of going out to shoot a very particular kind of insect. it might be that you've gotta just shoot what you can find. As I'm walking around here, in fact even just as I.

I move grass around, grasshoppers are taking off in all directions. And the grasshoppers seem to be a little bit slower moving than some of the other things that are out here. So I switched to shooting grasshoppers. I really wanted to find some cool spiders because this place is filthy with all sorts of different spiders. But Grasshoppers were all I could find while I was out so I've been changing my focus to those. Oh, here's a butterfly. Butterflies are also going to be moving much slower in the morning as they try to dry out their wings and things like that. So if you are curious about macro bug shooting, but you've never tried it and you don't have a macro lens.

First get yourself a lens reversal ring, it's only 10 or 15 bucks. You'll need to find the right one for your lens, that's all explained my lens reversal class. But then be ready. It's going to be a lot of time. You're going to have to go out and spend a lot of time laying in the mud, just looking around. You're going to be frustrated by bugs flying off just before you take your shot. Remember, you can't focus when you're working with lens reversal. You're moving in and out, so it can take a while to. Get the shot lined up, the bug's probably not going to cooperate. If you're having that frustration, you're not doing anything wrong. It just takes a lot of time and patience to get those really cool macro insect shots.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about The Practicing Photographer.


Expand all | Collapse all
Please wait...
Q: Why can't I earn a Certificate of Completion for this course?
A: We publish a new tutorial or tutorials for this course on a regular basis. We are unable to offer a Certificate of Completion because it is an ever-evolving course that is not designed to be completed. Check back often for new movies.
Share a link to this course
Please wait... Please wait...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.
Upgrade now


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ.

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Upgrade now

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed The Practicing Photographer.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferencesfrom the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Welcome to the redesigned course page.

We’ve moved some things around, and now you can



Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked