It’s Time to Choose…


Yesterday I shared some thoughts on the quagmire of problems we face as photographers – copyright and small business issues run the gamut, and it’s not an easy decision.  I’ve made my decision though and am heading to the voting booth today to cast my ballot.  Neither candidate really represents me, but I do have to make a decision on who I think is better suited to address the myriad of issues we face in the coming years.

Regardless of your thoughts about politics in general (my wife can’t stand politics period), or if you lean to the left or the right, getting out and voting is the only way we can make sure that the officials know we still care, and that they’d better be respectful of that.  We are the ones that put them in office, and we have the power to remove them from office if they don’t respect our goals as a society.

Make sure you vote today – now, more than ever, it’s important to make sure those who are elected know that they must represent us!  If anything, it helps to know that after today, the ads, campaigns, and such can stop for at least a little bit.  It’ll be back to the usual rhetoric! 🙂

Getting Started in Macro Photography

Guest post by Joe Farace

The classic definition of macro photography is that the image projected onto the digital sensor or film plane should be the same size as the subject. At a 1:1 ratio, a digital SLR with a full-sized chip should have the ability to produce life-size magnification and focus on an area as small as 24—36 mm. On the other hand, lens manufacturers sometimes describe a lens’s close-focusing capabilities as “macro” even if it doesn’t quite meet that definition and it’s gradually come to mean being able to focus close enough so the image is life-size or larger when viewing a 4—6 inch print. This only requires a magnification ratio of approximately 1:4.

Conventional wisdom is that close-up photography requires lots of expensive, specialized equipment and while it’s true you can spend lots of money in order to make macro shots, you don’t have to break your piggy bank to shoot macro, no matter how you choose to define it. Here’s why:

Most filter and camera manufacturers offer what are sometimes called close-up “filters” Although not filters in the traditional sense, they look like filters, work like filters and act like filters, so I’ll call ’em filters like everybody else. Close-up filters are really supplementary lenses that shorten your camera lens’ close-focusing distance allowing you to get closer to the subject.

Close-up filters are available in different strengths (or diopters) as a set usually includes versions labeled Close-up +1, Close-up +2, and Close-up +4. A diopter is a unit of measurement used to describe the power of a lens and is expressed as the reciprocal of the focal length in meters. For macro shooters on a budget, a complete set of really good close-up filters in 52mm threads should cost about $50.

Tip: Close-up lenses are double-threaded so they can be used in combination with one another but to get the sharpest results it’s a good idea to place the strongest filter closest to the lens’s front element.

You can follow Joe on his own blog, Changing the World, One Pixel at a Time