Notes from my recent experience of teaching simple coding to my 9 year old daughter. These are compilation of thoughts and steps. Hopefully they will be useful to others.Read More
Hey Guys.. happy to announce (thought a bit later already) that the above photo from Antelope Canyon (Grand Canyon) which i had taken in Apr-2017 was awarded with a certificate and cash prize at DJMPC Annual competition and exhibition at Coimbatore.
There were two other images on display, both from Grand Canyon as well!
A small compilation of Asian Paradise Flycatcher family in few outings at Sinhagad Valley, Pune, India.
Here is a small tutorial on how to remove small branches / twigs from an otherwise very good bird photograph to give a much cleaner look.
Recently published an travelogue in Marathi newspaper (Loksatta).
Here is the image version of the same
and here is the direct link to the article. : http://tiny.cc/ynj_loksatta_moscow
Had a wonderful Macro workshop on 13th August. 9 dedicated participants eager to learn new things.. what more can a teacher expect.
Here are few glimpses and moments capture by Rohit Chaudhari during the workshop.
When Rahul Bulbule (https://www.facebook.com/bababhatkanti) introduced me to this wonder tool called HTC RE, I was amazed at what it can do. Rahul has created true magic with HTC RE in last one year with his BackPack project, Dindi video and timelapses.
Here is my first attempt at using this wonder-tool for sunset timelapse!
Thanks Rahul for introducing me to the world of HTC RE.
So many times we face an issue in macro that the subject is dark and the background is either of same color or since flash does not reach distant background, it is rendered as black.
You would agree that the photo on left is not that great since the black caterpillar is getting mixed with the background.
There is simple fix to the issue.. just pick up a leaf (or a flower if you fancy bg color) and hold it in the background with one hand. If you have a friend with you.. even better as you can ask him/her to hold the leaf for you (and return the favor by holding it when they are taking the photo). In my case I was lucky to have my friend Gauri Joshi to help with the leaf background.
Just a simple trick, nothing fancy.. but makes world of a difference.. do you agree?
I am always in the quest of making simple, interesting and effective macro diffusers for many years.
I created this design with plastic paper on 17th May 2016 and been using it for past 1.5 months and just wanted to report back.. it JUST WORKS GREAT!
I have made some minor modifications to this design so that it can work for dedicated flash as well as for popup flash.
Join me on 13th Aug or 17th Sep in Pune for Macro Photography workshop to know more and for guidance on creating your own diffusers that just WORK!.
Here are some select results from varied magnification levels :).
Link to the Workshop: http://thephotographersblog.com/macro-photography-workshop-aug-2016/
Would like to invite everyone to come and learn some skills I have acquired over last few years.
Watch the first video tutorial which introduces Macro Photography.
We are glad to announce a new section in our workshops. Join us for a Macro Photography Workshop.
Explore the macro world with YOGENDRA JOSHI's expert vision.
Start: 0700 hrs on 13th Aug 2016
End: 1100 hrs on 13th Aug 2016
ABOUT THE WORKSHOP :
4 hours outdoor session @ Pashan Lake from 7 am to 11 am
1. Introduction to Macro Photography
2. Various equipment and lights used in macro Photography
3. Technical details and hands on explanation of each equipment
4. Individual on-field guidance for taking great macro shots (Background, Composition, Magic Angle, Magnification)
5. Basic knowledge of Stacking techniques
Things to carry with you
1. Your Camera (DSLR Preferred)
2. Macro Lens / Extension Tubes / Adopters (At least one to allow macro photography)
3. External Flash / strobe (if your camera does not have pop-up flash)
4. Simple thremocol plate (to use as diffuser)
5. Recommended to watch Yogendra's Macro Tutorials here before you attend the session
For More Details & Registrations please call us
The Photographers Blog .com Team : +91 9028260750
To know more about the workshop visit :
Few weeks back I was casually searching for something on Amazon.com and I stumbled upon a Auto Focus Macro Extension tube at under $9... Nope.. price bumped to $43 now. (Link)
At first it was hard to believe considering most of the manual focus extension tubes are trading at this cost and the best ones are well above $125-$150.
So I quickly searched for someone who was going to travel from US to India in next couple of weeks (which was not too difficult since school holidays in US). I got this lens in my hands on Saturday (10th June) and put it to test straight away on the same day evening.. and boy.. I was pleasantly surprised with the results.
Let's see the Results:
Note: All results with Canon 550D + camera mounted flash and a DIY diffuser. You could pretty much achieve same results with the pop-up flash and thermocol (Polystyrene) plate diffuser.
Here are some results with 50mm (with one ore two or all three extension tube elements attached). These results are with "Auto-Focus" turned on.
The Auto focus seemed to work fine with lower magnification with one or two elements attached.
Then it was time to UP the game.. so I stacked all the 3 elements and also slapped my raynox on top of the 50mm. That gave good magnification but made it increasingly difficult to use auto-focus, which was expected. But hey, the power of auto-focus lens is not just the auto-focus but more importantly the auto-aperture which you won't get with manual extension tubes.
Here are some results with auto focus turned off and going for really tiny subjects. Check the details on the ant and the fly-eye it could give.
Then comes the ultimate test... how does it perform with the kit lens, the standard 18-55? If that gives good results, then this can be a boon for people just getting started with DSLR into their adventures with macro. And well.. it DOES give great results with 18-55 too.
So to net-out.. the results were great.. better than I expected.
How does it compare with other equipment?
If you compare with a manual extension tube (that's the price-point), it is thousand times better.
Nope: Price now bumped to $43 which makes it half of other Auto Focus Extension Tubes. I would then recommend manual extension tubes :).
You can use any lens with this and don't have to pre-set the aperture. You can even take advantage of the auto focus at lower magnification. Lastly, if you use Magic Lantern, since the electronics are connected, you can even use "trap focus" feature even when auto-focus is turned off.. which makes it ideal for even tiny subjects.
More about "trap focus" feature in later tutorials.
If you have to compare this with dedicated macro lens, well don't since at $9 (Edit: $43 now!!) you won't get any macro lens... but wait.. there is more to it. With standard macro lens you can reach only 1:1 (barring the 5:1 lens like MPE65), where as you can reach 1:1 and beyond easily with this inexpensive hack while maintaining the clarity of a 50mm lens.. that's awesome when you count that even auto-focus works.
I am going to definitely recommend this one to anyone who is starting off into macro.
Does that mean I will shift to this from my 70-300 + Raynox combination?
Well, NO. For one simple reason, for changing magnification, I still need to add / remove the extension tubes which is not very convenient on the field. That said, I will start using it more often than my manual extension tubes / bellows for sure.
I will leave you with two more Images which are my favorites from the shoot on Saturday. Note that I got more magnification at lesser focal length (most probably since the minimal focal distance is lower at lower focal length.. something to ponder on in another tutorial)
Many of you would have heard of or seen Macro Stacking.. its about getting more and more details from the same subject area by shifting the plane of focus.
But what if you need to cover more of the subject area keeping the plane of focus same? Why do you need that.... well sometimes your subject is too big... like this Owlfly which was about 3-4 centimeters long and with my macro gear (Sigma 70-300 + Raynox) I could only cover about 2 centimeters at a time.
Also its not just about going wide.. you still would like to go close and capture the details of each area separately than going wide and taking a shot from the distance.
So this is what I did.. I took 11 separate shots trying to keep the same plane of focus and each time trying to capture one part of the insect in perfect focus. So at the end its a combination of focus stacking as well as panorama.
Here are the 7 pictures I finally ended up using for this final image.
Once I had that, all I had to do was to bring them in Lightroom, apply my standard macro preset, then take them to Photoshop as layers.
Once I was in Photoshop, I had to Auto Align the photos and then Auto Blend them. Well there were a few challenges with the wing shot and I had to position that shot manually and also recover the focus areas manually.. but well that's an exception. Otherwise in normal cases, Photoshop does a very good job anyway.
Here are a couple of more shots using the same technique.
So, go out there and find the "long tailed" insects or any other long subject and try your own macro panorama.
Feel free to drop in your comments / questions / suggestions.
See how Spiders mimic Ants to stay aliveRead More
Hope you like the video version of my workshop presentation on Macro Photography. It just has music for now, not my voice.. that's on the TO-DO List :).
I would like to extend my sincere thanks to Ritesh Nagre and his team (Prasanna and Megh) for publishing my full length article in the March-April 2016 Magazine.
It was a great honor to be recognized for my hard work over past many years and also giving exposure to the idea that you don't need super-expensive equipment to get great results in Macro Photography.
If you are interested only in my section of the magazine, you can download it from here
I would strongly recommend subscribing to the freely available great nature and photography related content on Wild Sojourns: https://wildsojourns.com/
Recently Sanctuary Asia, the oldest and largest wildlife magazine house in India published some of my best work as a permanent gallery on their website.
This was a great honor for me and my dedication for making "great macro images with budget equipment"
I invite all of you to review the online gallery and also share your feedback.