One Subject, Eight Legs, Eight Ways
October 11, 2011  Author:   (2)

One exercise that had a lasting effect on me in Elizabeth Stone’s and Doug Johnson’s Intermediate Photography Workshop four years ago was how to work a scene. We learned to shoot from the same spot or shoot a single subject at least eight different ways. In the macro world having the mindset to find eight […]

Shooting Damsels and Dragons – Flies, That Is
September 20, 2011  Author:  

  Damselflies and Dragonflies are some of the most curious, colorful, and strangest looking creatures I’ve run across in my quest for macro subjects, and also some of the most challenging and rewarding to shoot. I stumbled upon a popular roost for Damselflies in the park earlier this summer and shot them for at least […]

The Joys of Using Canon’s Macro Twin Lite (MT-24EX) Flash
July 25, 2011  Author:  

Following my adventure with bees, I put away the Speedlite, screwed on Canon’s dual macro flash (with diffusers), and haven’t looked back. The versatility of being able to so easily adjust the intensity (exposure compensation) and direction of light along an arc has opened up new possibilities for lighting and clarity in my macro images. […]

8 Great Tips For Photographing Bees
June 22, 2011  Author:   (8)

For the macrophile in search of fascinating subjects, colorful backgrounds, and technically challenging photography, look no further than the nearest stand of pollinating flowers. There you will invariably find buzzing, herky-jerky bumblebees bouncing from one flower to the next collecting pollen. How do you shoot something that is so small and in perpetual motion? After […]

Spring Babies: The Good, The Bad, and The Creepy
June 2, 2011  Author:  

Spring finally arrived in the Northwest and new life popped up in familiar places. The Mallards and Canada Geese babies showed up at the local park and in the macro world, hundreds of tiny orb weaver spiders emerged from their nest in the eave of the roof over my deck. The subjects were a study […]

The Dockyard Derby Dames: Photographing Roller Derby
April 11, 2011  Author:   (1)

(Note: I decided to forego my scheduled installment of the Nicaragua series in lieu of the latest and greatest opportunity that has come my way.) Rrrrrrrrroller derby! The words evoke names of stars like Joannnnnnn Weston of the Bay City Bombers when I was a kid. Now the names have morphed into monikers like Farrah […]

Documentary Photography: Nicaragua
January 24, 2011  Author:   (2)

I attended Billy Howard’s Documentary Photography workshop at RMSP in 2009 with the hope that one day I’d have the opportunity to put what I learned into practice. That day came this past December as I joined a team of researchers from the state of Washington and the University of Nicaragua (UNAN) to photograph and […]

Being Candid
December 22, 2010  Author:  

Being Candid I don’t do so well taking posed portraits whether it’s in a studio or not. Directing people, choosing backdrops, controlling lighting – not my strengths. But shooting candid shots, well, THAT gets my blood flowing. What could be better than capturing a spontaneous, unselfconscious look that tells a great story in and of […]

Macro Mating
November 11, 2010  Author:  

I’m pretty sure Henri Cartier-Bresson didn’t have insect mating in mind when he coined the photographic term “decisive moment,” but I can’t think of a phrase that better describes these momentary opportunities that often happen by surprise.  More often than not catching insects mating at the decisive moment is just dumb luck, although it helps […]

Little Miss Muffet…
October 11, 2010  Author:   (3)

Spiders. Few things are more unnerving. When I was six years old I freaked out and crashed my bike when one crawled onto my wrist. I’ve had a love-hate (mostly hate) relationship with them ever since. And, as accustomed to them as I’ve become since shooting them up-close (as in photography, not guns), I still […]

Lights! Camera! Action!- Using a Ring Flash
September 10, 2010  Author:   (5)

In my last blog I had just begun to shoot bees hand holding my camera in natural light. This month I’ve experimented with my ring flash, shooting bees and bugs during the harsher mid-day light, and intentionally finding the most colorful natural backdrops possible. The result is that I’ve experienced a much higher shot-failure rate, […]

Not For The Faint of Heart
July 12, 2010  Author:  

One of the consequences of “Going Back, Digging Deeper” (last month’s blog entry), was getting attached to the wildlife I was photographing; in this case, a family of Canada geese. I discovered my growing attachment to the geese when I began to feel protective of them when dogs or children approached early on in my […]

Going Back, Digging Deeper
June 14, 2010  Author:   (1)

Sometimes photography is a one-time opportunity that comes and goes in a flash. Other times it’s like mining for gold – you return to the same spot over and over again to dig for every gold nugget photo you can possibly get. The latter was the case for me recently as I photographed a family […]

Wildlife Safari – Macro Style
May 17, 2010  Author:   (1)

My dream photo-adventure is an African wildlife safari complete with exotic animals and landscapes. Not gonna happen any time soon for me, but I’ve found something equally thrilling (okay, that’s a stretch), and it’s as close as your back yard or nearby park – insect photography or “bug art.” The subjects you’ll encounter are as […]