Four in a Row
The story of this photo
I have been exploring macro photography lately. You probably know me for my HDR work, and don’t worry, I will keep on creating HDRs. But I was always fascinated with macro photos. However, I was fully aware that creating stunning macros is very difficult. So I studied macro photography (without practicing it) until I had a pretty good idea of how to approach it.
A few weeks ago, I bought myself a Nikon Micro 105mm lens (also a nice portrait lens), some flash equipment and a few other thing, and I started exploring the world of the small actively. This is the very first macro shot I publish. It was set up using a blue cardboard as a background, three flashes, and a Gerbera flower (of course) on my table top.
How it was shot
- Taken with a tripod
- Single exposure
- Camera: Nikon D7000
- Lens: Nikon AF-S Micro-Nikkor 105mm 1:2,8G VR
How it was post-processed
- Post-processing was done in Photoshop
- Topaz DeNoise
- Topaz Details for bringing out the details in the petals and some basic color correction
- Topaz Infocus for sharpening
- Saturation adjustent layer (master)
- Vibrance layer (vibrance)
- All the adjustments above grouped and opacity of the group set to 60% (original exposure on background layer)
Here you see the setup on my desk.
- Three normal flash devices (1x Nikon SB-700, and 2x Yong Nuo YN460 II). Backlight, light from the side and for the background.
- A blue piece of cardboard as the background.
- A small syringe for applying the water drops
Great shot and processing!
Ah Lot of hard work done to get the wonderful shot… Congrats
Is that the order you do your procesing? I’ve been wondering when to use InFocus vs. Details. Great image by the way.
Yes, that is the order I usually use. InFocus would be right at the end of the workflow. All the other stuff is just adjustment layers.
What a spectacular picture! It is technically and artistically superb.
Hey klaus… Man, is pretty good, i like the Composition!:-O. Im in love with MAcro Photography also, I think it shows the beauty that exist but we dont look at it… Still saving money to buy that lens!
Klaus that is such an amazing photograph… goes to show that while HDR is something you are famous for, you have the eye of a true and versatile photographer… … looking forward to a lot more HDR and macro work from you….. truly wonderful…. and thanks for your insights and openness in sharing how u achieve such art!! Fond regards from New Orleans!!!
Thanks a lot everybody!
Whenever you venture into a new field of photography, you’re not quite sure about your results. It sure feels good to get some great feedback here.
I love macro photography and ‘four in a row’ is a wonderful inspiration for me to keep experimenting. Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge and talent!
Hi, Klaus. Your photo is beautiful and at this point, your technical skills, although always awesomely inspirational, no longer surprise this fan. But now I’m also impressed with your “hands on” artistic acumen. Not 3, but 4 perfect mirroring water beads perched precariously on what looks like the sloping petal of the Gerbera daisy. Well done. Keep that syringe handy, Klaus. Kudos!
not to be redundant (and repetitive, lol) but that’s truly a beautifully composed image. thanks again for the inspiration!
Merci pour tout ses truc et astuce que tu nous partage car pour des amateur s se sont des petits truc qui font la différence Merci
How do you keep the fours water drop stay on the petal?? Thanks.
it is simply adhesion. There is no trick here. The drops are just so small that the adhesion forces are much greater than the gravity pulling them down.
A wonderful “first-time” shot. On behalf of everyone in interwebland, I’d like to thank you for sharing your techniques in such a clear and concise manner. I look forward to seeing more macro photography from you, and of course more HDR.
Your work always amaze. Keep it coming.
Waoooo. realy great macro shoot… thankyou for sharing the idea and efforts realy made by you… being an amature and fan of macro photography if I may keep in touch … will you please allow me and how can I see your such great work.
Totes les seves fotografies són, les que havia vist fins ara, perfectes. Però, amb aquesta, les ha superat. Tan, aparentement, senzilla, és una meravella.
hi..I always wonder…how do you “arrange” the water drop? what is the way to create a good water drop? spray? drop? thanks for your fabulous sharing….
a syringe and a steady hand is all you need to do this. Try it! It’s fun.
This is a stunning macro photograph. I particular like the clear reflections in the water drops.
Amazing. I haven’t been here for a while but it’s good to be back again. Thanks for sharing the setup.
Hi Grzegorz, welcome back! 🙂
Great writeup. I’m looking forward to more macro photography guides from you moving forward.
A couple of questions about your setup:
– What kind of diffusers you’ve used? I’ve researched a few.
– Have you used any remore/radio triggers with the Yongnuos? If not, I’m assuming they support iTTL?
Macro photography guides? Good idea! 🙂
I am using very simple 15x17cm diffusors that I attach to the flashes and one bigger DIY diffusor that I hold by hand depending on the situation.
The Yongnuo flash is manual. I trigger it from my D7000 with the built-in flash. So there is no extra equipment needed.
WOW, awesome and beautiful! Macro photography is a great way to reveal God’s beauty in all life forms. Now we can see it magnified and appreciate the creation of it all. Would love to see more photos of nature. Trees, flowers, stones, mushrooms, moss, grass. Keep experimenting, love your web site.
Thanks a lot, Little Fox!
I will certeinly publish more macro work in the future.
It is amazing capture!!!. Klaus I am big fan of you work unfortunately I work 7 days and very hardly get time to watch your work. your work is always amazing and It inspire me a lot so Thank you very much for sharing your talent with others.
God Bless you.
LOVE YOUR WORKS, BOSS
Very nice macro work. This is what HDR Should look like even though this isn’t HDR.
Hehehe! I like the way you put that, Mark!
Absolutely stunning image. I recently just bought a canon 100mm F2.8L macro lens and have begun entering the macro world. This truly will inspire me. What are those soft boxes on your flashes?
I use Delamax 15x17cm softboxes on my speedlights. An additional diffusor that you hand-hold can really be useful too.
I hope you’re having fun with your macro gear.
Thank you. I look forward to more macro projects as well as seeing more of you pictures.
Do you use some kind of rail to move camera back and forward for macro photography?. If yes would you please let us know what kind of ?.
Thank you very much Klaus.
It is always exciting to see your latest photos, but I thought I’d leave a comment here as I think this is the nicest macro shot I’ve ever seen. Also, it felt like Christmas day when I discovered your site, and I just wished to thank you! 🙂 So much wonderful information, and the sheer amount of work you put in is just so inspiring. The making of videos are great fun to watch…like seeing a master at work!….and give one something to aspire to.
Lastly, I put together a respectable looking panorama rig using a Sunwayfoto panning clamp and rail along with a ball head/tripod combo from Sirui, for very reasonable cost, and can’t wait to test that out!…so thanks for the very helpful info in your vertorama section!
Thanks a lot for the great feedback, Conan!
You’re welcome, and I am very glad to hear that my website has been so helpful to you. Keep coming back for more, will ya?
Oh, and I hope you will show me the panorama/vertorama photos you shot with your new rig. Have fun with it.
Great work Klaus! Thanks for sharing 🙂
Good Job. Very Informative. Keep Posting Macro. Thanks for the info.
Awesome shot! I’m looking at getting into macro soon as well, always find that the DOF is so extreme in macro, curious to hear what your aperture was for this shot?
I used f/40.0 for this shot. It was produced with a special macro lens, and one of the features of a macro lens is that you can use very small apertures to get a larger DoF.
I hope this helps!
Great work Klaus, think your work is refreshing to look at. Being a lighting designer for the performing arts your work enlightens me.
thanks a lot! You’re a lighting designer? Sounds interesting! Tell me more about it!
Esto es fantástico, excelente.
Awesome! I am just getting into macro photography and love taking photos outdoors because this is where all the insects are. Is it possible to get results similar to yours outside (but having to deal with the wind, the sun, and no flash?).
Thanks a lot, Jason!
Well, anything is possible. If you shoot outside, the timing is very important. I would not go out and shoot macros on a windy day. Go out when the light is right. Harsh mid-day light should generally be avoided. If you don’t use a flash, a reflector can help to brighten the subject, and a diffusor lets you soften the light. You don’t need to buy expensive gear for this. A white sheet of paper and a white plastic bag will do the trick as well. If you have a speedlight, it gives you more flexibility.
Just go out there and experiment. You will find out quickly what works for you and what does not work.