Try macro photography ideas at home

In the past year, most of us have become accustomed to our homes. As a result, most photographers, myself included, struggle to find interesting subjects and inspiration. But one of the best things about macro photography is that you can do it anywhere, including indoors, with a little creativity. Try macro photography ideas at home, I’m not the first photographer to come up with these ideas, and I wouldn’t be surprised if you’d seen some of them before. This article has rounded up some of my favorite DIY ideas for macro photography at home!

1. Make your own background

The first step is to find a good background, so you can take these photos more easily.

If you are a portrait photographer, maybe you already have some nice backgrounds in different colors, you can choose these macro shots. If not, don’t worry. Simply wrap a shirt, tablecloth, or sheet over a cardboard box to create a background suitable for macro photography.

Try macro photography ideas at home

2. CD and water drops

One of the classic themes of this “homemade” macro photography is CDS. You might need to search for some cupboards, but I think most photographers have some old CDS somewhere. If possible, try to use a product that doesn’t have too many scratches.

To add interest, spray the CD with water drops and adjust the depth of the field. Try supporting the CD and shooting from a tripod so you can use longer exposure times and capture higher-quality images.

3. A splash of water

Another idea is to photograph water droplets directly (no CD required). Chances are, you’ve seen some photos of splashes and how much fun they are to observe up close. Some photographers have even built custom droplet settings that can produce fascinating patterns of water splash interactions.

Using a flash is critical for camera settings, otherwise, it’s almost impossible to freeze water droplets in mid-air. I also recommend using an aperture of F/8 or narrower to get more depth of field — and thus more room for error. You’ll get the best light by reflecting the flash off a large surface such as an umbrella, wall, or ceiling.

Experiment with different backgrounds, food colors, and ingredients to get some interesting results.

water drop

4. Oil and water

This is another question involving water, and one of my favorite ideas on the list, because the results you can get are beautiful and varied. All you need to do is drop some oil on a pan of water and photograph the settings from above.

Here are the steps:

  • Find a baking pan or some other wide container with a transparent bottom
  • Place the baking sheet on some tall objects, so there is an empty space underneath. (I used two paint tins, one on either side of the baking tray)
  • Midway through, adding water
  • Add about a tablespoon of oil
  • Gently stir the oil around the surface of the water
  • Place the camera directly over the baking tray and frame directly down
  • Experiment with the color and direction of light, as well as sliding colored objects on the baking tray

I found that I got the best light by shining the flash on the tablecloth and making it reflect off the bottom of the baking tray. I also like sliding magazines in settings and bright plastic covers that give me some interesting color patterns.

5. Other ideas

For this type of close-up, you can really capture an infinite number of subjects, so I’m going to quickly cover some of my favorite topics.

(1) The folding of paper

Depending on your lighting settings, you can get some great close-up shots of ordinary printer paper. Set your camera on a timer, use the back LCD to compose, then fold/curl it into different shapes.

paper plane

(2) Put the object into the water

Another water! This time, if you have a big vase or empty aquarium — something with big sides made of glass — you can try to catch objects directly underwater after dropping them. This is the opposite of drip photography.

(3) The otherworldly sponge

It sounds like the stuff of science fiction, but you can also photograph a sponge and make it look like the surface of another planet. Try side lighting, backlighting, and long exposures and you’ll be surprised at how interesting results you have can get. It just goes to show that any subject can be photographed with some thinking outside the box.

(4) Fabrics, shells, etc

My final piece of advice is to look around your home and try to take a “big view” of things. You can take great photos of all kinds of strange subjects, and the ideas in this article are just scratching the surface.

6. Conclusion

Hopefully, this article will give you some ideas and inspiration for your own photography! Even if we stay indoors, it’s always good to exercise our photographic muscles, and the theme here is a good place to start.

You need some creative thinking and flexibility. All of these themes were created by the photographer from the comfort of his home. So you can set up your camera, look for some interesting subjects, and have fun.



Is macro photography difficult?

Macro photography is a difficult genre — you’re pushing up against the physical limits of depth of field, diffraction, and motion blur. Naturally, focusing on macro photography isn’t an easy task, but it’s a crucial one.

Can you do macro photography with a 50mm lens?

50mm lenses work best in capturing typical macro shots. However, these types of macro lenses have their drawbacks. 50mm lenses make subjects appear half “life-size” since they usually feature a 1:2 ratio, and require shooting at a much closer distance. But a 50mm lens is a must if you want a general walk-around lens.

What shutter speed should I use for macro?

If you want to make sharp macro images, the shutter speed must at least be 1/100th of a second or faster. If you have your camera mounted on a tripod, you will also be able to set even faster shutter speeds, which can be helpful when you have subjects that are moving or partially moving.

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