Praying Mantis

Started Jul 31, 2012 | Discussions thread
Riquez Contributing Member • Posts: 923
Re: Praying Mantis

Great subject. Praying Mantis make for awesome Macro shots because they tend to stay still & look really bizarre!

Unfortunately this shot isn't quite in sharp focus. It would really be superb if it was because you could pick out the hairs & details on the body.

Macro can be tough, I love it & struggle along regardless.

A couple of tips that I use ...

Dont auto-mode on your camera - pick a mode like M or P where you can set a central focus point, then you can auto-focus on exactly what you need to - e.g., the head.

& often you are going to have to manual focus to tune it - because when you get that close, the camera can tend to focus on the grass rather than the insect.

You have to think on your feet a bit. See a wasp, butterfly. etc: you need fast shutter 1000 maybe. I quickly change to S mode & set 1000.

Macro generally has quite narrow Depth of field, so its a challenge to get everything you want in focus - Set your Aperture as high as you can to help that - f8, f12 is a good guide - f4 or f2 & its going to be really tough unless the thing is not moving & very small (like ladybird maybe, not ant too fast).

Also, actually moving back & not so close will help get everything in focus, you can crop the pic later.

If you are in Macro mode, even on a bright day, light can vary when you get in a bush or next to a wall. You need to maximise the light, so set your ISO a little higher. I find ISO 800 is a good one because quality is fine. If the insect doesnt fly away, then you have chance to change to ISO200 & perhaps get a better shot.

Afterwards, some sharpness / HDR or Contrast filter in Photoshop or other app can help a lot. I have turned "OK" looking bug pics into awesome ones with a bit of after processing.

Anyway. Im not an expert! But i do enjoy these kind of bug pic very much. Thank you for sharing - I hope these tips can help a bit.

 Riquez's gear list:Riquez's gear list
Sony Alpha NEX-6 Sony E 16mm F2.8 Pancake Sony E 30mm F3.5 Macro Sony E 55-210mm F4.5-6.3 OSS Sony E 35mm F1.8 OSS +10 more
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