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Working with viewfinders in macro

From: Foundations of Photography: Macro and Close-Up

Video: Working with viewfinders in macro

Very often, when shooting macro, whether in the studio or in the field, you are going to have your camera in an inconvenient location. I mean, inconvenient to you. My viewfinder is way down here; my eyes are way up here. So, if I want to look through the viewfinder to frame my shot, I've got to get down here. And, I would really like to offer that if you do find yourself having to work this way, don't do what I just did. When I go like this, my eye is now sideways; it's actually more difficult for me to figure out if my shot is leveled. And, you may think, "Well, no, I'll just pay attention." And, as many times as I think I can get away with that, I still come home with crooked shots.

Working with viewfinders in macro

Very often, when shooting macro, whether in the studio or in the field, you are going to have your camera in an inconvenient location. I mean, inconvenient to you. My viewfinder is way down here; my eyes are way up here. So, if I want to look through the viewfinder to frame my shot, I've got to get down here. And, I would really like to offer that if you do find yourself having to work this way, don't do what I just did. When I go like this, my eye is now sideways; it's actually more difficult for me to figure out if my shot is leveled. And, you may think, "Well, no, I'll just pay attention." And, as many times as I think I can get away with that, I still come home with crooked shots.

Instead, you really do need to keep your eye level, and come down here, and that's really going to tire out your knees very quickly. Fortunately, there are a couple of options. You can, of course, turn on live view. With live view, even from up here, I'm still having a hard time seeing the screen. And, if I was working in bright daylight, the screen might get washed out. There is another option, and that is the right-angle viewfinder. This attaches to the viewfinder of my camera, and gives me an easier way of seeing my shot. There are a number of different brands of these. This is a third party. This is a Seagull angle finder.

Canon actually makes one, as does Nikon, so you can buy brand-specific viewfinders. And, they attach in different ways. The Canon ones, your viewfinder always has this little cover that has to come off. And, it's very easy. You just squeeze the edges, and slide it off. In the case of this viewfinder, you need a special adapter for different models of cameras, and this one ships with a whole mess of adapters. When you order it, be sure to check the list of compatible cameras, and make sure yours is on it. And, you may find that some support your cameras, and others don't. So, I slide that on there, and then I slide this on here, and now it fits real snug. Okay.

So now, I've got a nice right-angle viewfinder that I can use, and I don't have to bend over. I can even tilt it, so I can get down like this. Again, I still want to be careful about ensuring that I'm able to see an accurately-leveled view. If I'm looking at this, I'm seeing a sideways image, so I would want to come over here. A nice feature of this viewfinder is it also has magnification. I've got a little switch right here; it's set on 1X. If I move it over to here, I get a cropped 2X view of my image. Not magnifying the final image, just giving me a magnified view of the viewfinder that can make it much easier to focus.

These are very handy. Honestly, I find that I rarely use them. Live view really gets me through most of my difficult focusing situations. And the having to mess with setting it up . . . . I just find that I tend to just suffer through looking through the viewfinder. If, though, you're finding yourself craning your neck a lot, hurting your knees, or that you just can't see the live view screen, you are going to want to check into a right-angle viewfinder for your camera.

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This video is part of

Image for Foundations of Photography: Macro and Close-Up
Foundations of Photography: Macro and Close-Up

47 video lessons · 15483 viewers

Ben Long
Author

 
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  1. 3m 54s
    1. Welcome
      2m 17s
    2. What you need to know for this course
      1m 37s
  2. 20m 33s
    1. What is close up?
      2m 21s
    2. Understanding minimum focus distance
      3m 55s
    3. Comparing wide lens and telephoto
      1m 55s
    4. Understanding depth of field and focus
      2m 11s
    5. Working with extension tubes
      4m 30s
    6. Working with close-up lenses
      5m 41s
  3. 28m 7s
    1. What is a macro photo?
      4m 15s
    2. Understanding how to shoot macro with a reversed lens
      5m 37s
    3. Using a point-and-shoot camera for macro
      1m 55s
    4. Working with backdrops for macro
      3m 45s
    5. Practicing macro by shooting in the kitchen
      12m 35s
  4. 58m 38s
    1. Choosing a macro lens
      2m 4s
    2. Exploring macro lens features: Focal length
      3m 16s
    3. Understanding macro lens shutter speed
      7m 6s
    4. Shooting basics with a macro lens
      8m 24s
    5. Getting closer with macro lenses and extension tubes
      11m 13s
    6. Working with depth of field and macro
      5m 1s
    7. Understanding depth and composition in macro
      6m 43s
    8. Working with subject holders and support
      6m 36s
    9. Shooting with the Canon 65 mm
      8m 15s
  5. 13m 12s
    1. Working with macro stabilizing options
      5m 45s
    2. Working with sliders for macro
      2m 44s
    3. Working with a bellows
      1m 55s
    4. Working with viewfinders in macro
      2m 48s
  6. 52m 59s
    1. Working with direct light
      6m 13s
    2. Macro and the angle of light
      2m 24s
    3. Augmenting direct light with reflectors
      6m 42s
    4. Continuous lighting to add fill to a macro shot
      5m 55s
    5. Lighting your macro scene with continuous light
      4m 50s
    6. Lighting the macro scene with strobes
      4m 59s
    7. Setting up a macro-specific flash unit
      3m 21s
    8. Shooting with the Canon Macro Twin Lite
      7m 56s
    9. Shooting macro in a light tent
      3m 31s
    10. Shooting macro on a light table
      7m 8s
  7. 19m 44s
    1. Field shooting for macro, starting at home
      7m 5s
    2. Managing backgrounds in the field
      7m 39s
    3. Shooting macro water droplets
      5m 0s
  8. 56m 19s
    1. Creating a simple manual focus stack
      4m 40s
    2. Creating a focus stacked image with manual merge
      6m 17s
    3. Creating a focus stacked image using Helicon Remote
      11m 6s
    4. Working with a StackShot rail for focus stacking
      11m 46s
    5. Merging a focus stack with Photoshop
      11m 12s
    6. Merging photo stacks with Helicon
      6m 53s
    7. Understanding the aesthetics of depth of field
      4m 25s
  9. 1m 5s
    1. Next steps
      1m 5s

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