Macro photography: Photographing the wonderful world of insects

Insects can be found almost everywhere on trees in forests, in vast grasslands, in noisy cities, in streets and parks, in urban rivers, in water systems in residential areas, and even in grass and wall roots in gardens.  As a result, insects have become the most accessible subjects for photographers.  Some of the insects may be intimidating, but if you get close enough to the subject and the insects are very photogenic, you may be able to see very clear colors and structures as well.  Those active insects have also been a source of fun for many photographers.  

1. Photograph insect equipment  

(1) Macro lens  

Using a macro lens, you can take pictures of insects to highlight their charm by showing off their dazzling shells and strange shapes.  Take interesting photos that are new and creative.  When choosing a macro lens, you must first choose a lens with high magnification.  I recommend choosing a macro lens of at least 90mm.  There should be enough space between you and the insects so as not to scare them away.  For example, Apexel 100mm HD mobile phone camera super macro lens.  


The APEXEL macro lens captures life-size images of the smallest objects.  Unlike traditional macro photography, the lens is less than an inch from the subject and can capture rich textures, materials, and creatures that our phones haven’t been able to see before.  

(2) Tripod  

The main reason for using a tripod is to avoid camera shake during exposure.  It is also useful for insect macro photography when you are very close and the depth of field is shallow.  Shooting with a handheld camera may not be too successful.  Using a tripod can also help you release your hands when you’re tired of holding up your camera.  It also prevents your tired hands from shaking as you hold the camera up all the time.  

2. Insect photography skills  

(1) Don’t chase insects  

There is no need to chase insects, let them come to you.  Spray some sugar water on your plants and you’ll be surprised at how many insects you attract.  

(2) Move slowly  

This is the golden rule when photographing insects.  Some insects are more tolerant than others but always move slowly.  Avoid fast or busy movements, as this will scare off bugs.  


(3) Light shooting  

Macro photography must use soft light, that is, scattered light to produce the best results so that the entire picture is evenly lit.  

Front-light photography is the most common method, using direct light on the insect.  It has also been mentioned before that we should pay attention to the hardness of the light. If the light is very strong, we can put a soft light cloth in front of the insects to achieve the effect of scattering light. Ordinary printing paper can also be used to replace the sulfate paper used in art.  Of course, you can also choose the soft light in the morning and afternoon.  

Shooting can mainly show the grain, texture, and color of the insect surface, so the insects with rich color and beautiful grain are more suitable for light shooting.  

(4) Backlight shooting  

To highlight the crystal clear feeling of insect wings, the backlight is the best choice.  Using light that shines through the subject in front of the camera, the insect’s edges become brighter.  

Backlight is usually taken against a dark background to highlight the details of the insects.  The hairs on a bee’s body, for example, are delineated by light when backlit.  In the case of a scene with a large light ratio, small reflectors should be used to fill the light for the front of the main insect, and the selection of reflectors of different colors will also change the local tone, such as golden color will produce a warm tone.  In terms of exposure selection, it is suggested to appropriately reduce exposure compensation when backlight shooting, if the background is very dark, to avoid the problem of over-exposure of the whole picture.  


3. Conclusion  

Bugs are exciting subjects to photograph because they can be so diverse.  A variety of sizes, shapes, colors, and textures.  They also behave differently when you photograph them – some bugs will stay still as long as you don’t touch them, while others will fly away when your hand gets close!  Insect photography requires much more skill and involvement and is much more fun.  

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