Macro Exercises #3 Focus stacking

24

Comments

  • NanoNano Big grins Posts: 42Registered Users Big grins
    edited January 11, 2008
    my attempt at stacking
    Well i want to start by thanking Lord Vetenari for these wonderful macro exercises. I just found them today, and have to say im realy excited to try some of them>
    To give you an idea where i am in my photography skills, i recently just picked up my first dlsr, but have been shooting with the higher end digital sony' for the past five years. I got turned onto this macro photography from macro junkie over at http://photography-on-the.net/forum/
    So i ended up with a 40D, and the MPE 65mm as well as the mt24 ex flash.
    Quite a bit of camera for a newbie, but im ready for the challenge.
    Today i tried the stacking technique that your thread describes.
    It rained pretty hard today here so i wasnt able to go outside and realy shoot much, but i was able to get these shots of some ice crystals melting on top of pine needles.
    I know they aren't the best shots, but i am happy with the stacking attempt at opening up the depth of field.

    I also cloned the final shot as i am building up quite a bit of sensor dust. I have a kit on the way but until it gets here im not sure how i can realy clean it.

    anyway here are the photos that i took today, and stacked. Three shots and then the fourth is my stack.


    Nano
  • NanoNano Big grins Posts: 42Registered Users Big grins
    edited January 11, 2008
    second photo in the three shot series
    nano
  • NanoNano Big grins Posts: 42Registered Users Big grins
    edited January 11, 2008
    third shot
    nano
  • NanoNano Big grins Posts: 42Registered Users Big grins
    edited January 11, 2008
    and finaly the stack
    this is the three images stacked thru combinez.
    I also cloned out the sensor dust shadows that were in the image in cs3.


    Nano
  • Lord VetinariLord Vetinari Smugbug Posts: 15,021Registered Users Major grins
    edited January 11, 2008
    Nice stack - well done on trying this :)

    There is some dark haloing in the final image which you would need to clone out - this often happens along highish contrast edges.

    brian v.
  • SkippySkippy Forensic Wannabe Posts: 12,075Registered Users Major grins
    edited January 11, 2008
    Nano wrote:
    this is the three images stacked thru combinez.
    I also cloned out the sensor dust shadows that were in the image in cs3.


    Nano

    Hey great effort there Nano, your learning from the Best "Brian"
    ..... Skippy :D
    .
    .
    Skippy (Australia) - Moderator of "HOLY MACRO" and "OTHER COOL SHOTS"

    ALBUM http://ozzieskip.smugmug.com/

    :skippy Everyone has the right to be stupid, but some people just abuse the privilege :dgrin
  • NanoNano Big grins Posts: 42Registered Users Big grins
    edited January 11, 2008
    Hey thanks for the kind words guys. i am definilty eager to learn these methods. They are awesome, and im realy interested in putting them to work in my essential oil secreting gland shots.

    ANyway brian, i was wondering if you have any particular methods for cloning out that dark haloing?
    i am familiar with removing sensor dust shadows, but they are circular, this seems like it would be a little trickier, if you have any hints , i would love to hear them
    thanks in advance, i have seen you on here and flickr, and things its realy great the way you offer up help and advice. GIve thanks


    Nano
  • pankajasundipankajasundi Big grins Posts: 62Registered Users Big grins
    edited January 11, 2008
    Is there a stacking program on the Mac?

    /Pankaj
  • Lord VetinariLord Vetinari Smugbug Posts: 15,021Registered Users Major grins
    edited January 12, 2008
    Nano wrote:
    Hey thanks for the kind words guys. i am definilty eager to learn these methods. They are awesome, and im realy interested in putting them to work in my essential oil secreting gland shots.

    ANyway brian, i was wondering if you have any particular methods for cloning out that dark haloing?
    i am familiar with removing sensor dust shadows, but they are circular, this seems like it would be a little trickier, if you have any hints , i would love to hear them
    thanks in advance, i have seen you on here and flickr, and things its realy great the way you offer up help and advice. GIve thanks


    Nano

    Hi nano you can either try to use the clone tool as you suggest or a method I frequently use, is to use the healing brush tool to copy the affected part back from one of the original pics onto the stacked pic. Obviously you have to find the correct original with that part of the subject in focus.

    Brian V.
  • AhzdeeenAhzdeeen Big grins Posts: 21Registered Users Big grins
    edited February 26, 2008
    Practice
    Hey everyone, I've been lurking for a while now, while I saved up the money for a camera...now I've got a Nikon D80 with a Sigma 105mm f2.8 EX DG, and an SB-600 for a flash. Got home today and found our beta had jumped out of his bowl while we were out, and well, I had to use him to practice focus stacking, only had the camera for 6 days now, so expect to see more of me. Did a little post-proccessing, like cropping out some blur, but nothing major.
    First Image:
    2293549690_6bd5b284f6_b.jpg
    Final Product:
    2292791509_64f7d3c24c_b.jpg
  • SkippySkippy Forensic Wannabe Posts: 12,075Registered Users Major grins
    edited February 26, 2008
    Ahzdeeen wrote:
    Hey everyone, I've been lurking for a while now, while I saved up the money for a camera...now I've got a Nikon D80 with a Sigma 105mm f2.8 EX DG, and an SB-600 for a flash. Got home today and found our beta had jumped out of his bowl while we were out, and well, I had to use him to practice focus stacking, only had the camera for 6 days now, so expect to see more of me. Did a little post-proccessing, like cropping out some blur, but nothing major.
    First Image:
    Final Product:

    Wow well done Ahzdeeen, you managed to bring back heaps of detail with your stacking.

    The comparison shots really speak for themselves.
    You'll be hooking on this technique before ya know it clap.gif
    Thanks for sharing .... Skippy :D
    .
    .
    Skippy (Australia) - Moderator of "HOLY MACRO" and "OTHER COOL SHOTS"

    ALBUM http://ozzieskip.smugmug.com/

    :skippy Everyone has the right to be stupid, but some people just abuse the privilege :dgrin
  • Lord VetinariLord Vetinari Smugbug Posts: 15,021Registered Users Major grins
    edited February 26, 2008
  • Unbrok3nUnbrok3n Major grins Posts: 444Registered Users Major grins
    edited July 30, 2008
    I dont shoot RAW, but im thinking about starting. When doing focus stacking does it make sense to shoot RAW? It doesnt seem like it would...
    Thanks! I cant wait to try out this technique!
    graphic designer/photographer
  • Unbrok3nUnbrok3n Major grins Posts: 444Registered Users Major grins
    edited August 3, 2008
    Im having a little trouble with the process (sorry if this thread is too old...)
    But when I try to combine images I get a final result of like the second image overlapping the first. Im guessing this is because they werent taken in exactly the same spot? Is that the case? Do you need a tripod and have the images taken in exactly the same spot without moving? Sometimes I use a monopod...
    Thanks, I appreciate any help.
    graphic designer/photographer
  • Lord VetinariLord Vetinari Smugbug Posts: 15,021Registered Users Major grins
    edited August 4, 2008
    Hi, Unbroken.

    Not necessary to shoot RAW for any pics but I just find the exposure latitude useful for macro shooting even if I'm focus stacking.

    As far as it not working, it does sound as if the shots have too much movement between them. I don't use a tripod for mine, but often I'm resting the lens on the same surface as the bug which helps keep the POV constant.

    Brian V.
  • Unbrok3nUnbrok3n Major grins Posts: 444Registered Users Major grins
    edited August 4, 2008
    Ya, I figured that was my problem. I just got extension tubes for my tokina 100mm macro, so Im definitely going to have to start learning focus stacking :)
    Is the program you recommended in this thread still what you would recommend?
    Thanks.
    graphic designer/photographer
  • AlexrexAlexrex Beginner grinner Posts: 1Registered Users Beginner grinner
    edited September 15, 2008
    Hi everyone,Im having a few stacked macroshots,for example:
    first shot 34897315vb6.th.jpg second shot 74865036ha9.th.jpg third shot 28322304vm4.th.jpg fourth shot 38328227lz5.th.jpg
    Final resultktirnb5.th.jpg
  • TechsnapTechsnap Beginner grinner Posts: 2Registered Users Beginner grinner
    edited October 20, 2008
    Thanks!
    Brian, thanks for a great tutorial - I work with your son and he gave me the link to them.

    Tried this out over the weekend with some coins and got some good results. It'll certainly help with my photography evening class project on details in nature - I'm getting a lot of inspiration from your fantastic images.

    Just got to find a willing subject to do something 'real-life' now like your insects.

    Thanks again!
    Chris
  • Lord VetinariLord Vetinari Smugbug Posts: 15,021Registered Users Major grins
    edited October 21, 2008
    Good one Alexrex :)

    Hi Chris- Yes Robert mentioned you were getting interested in macro :)- amazing coincidence!

    If you haven't seen them there's lots of hints and tips etc in the discussion points here http://www.flickr.com/groups/macroviewers/

    Brian V.
  • Unbrok3nUnbrok3n Major grins Posts: 444Registered Users Major grins
    edited December 30, 2008
    I know im kind of bringing this thread up from the grave, but im starting to do a lot of serious stacking, and I have some questions. When I try to do a stack with like 5 or 6 frames, even after doing it manually, there seems to be a lot of overlapping on the outside of the image. You can see it towards the top of the frog by the eye...i dont know if youd call this halos...
    SHould I be doing something more specific when I choose the points? Also, this wasnt taken with a tripod so each pic could be a little off. Any help is appreciated...i have dozens of groups of pics I want to stack...and I want to make sure im doing it right! Thanks

    http://provethesunshine.smugmug.com/photos/445640147_aXjwP-M.jpg
    graphic designer/photographer
  • CoreheadCorehead Strange Steve Posts: 210Registered Users Major grins
    edited December 30, 2008
    I SECOND the motion--I mean, I heartily support Andy's kind request here!

    Steve-o
    Andy wrote:
    clap.gif Brian :D

    May we have your permission to have this live permanently on our Tutes site at http://dgrin.smugmug.com ?
  • rnicklrnickl Big grins Posts: 56Registered Users Big grins
    edited December 30, 2008
    Losing a bit from the edge of the frame is inevitable. As you move closer to the subject to change your focal point you'll lose edge of the frame you had in the first shot.

    You can minimize it with a steady hand but you'll still need some cropping with even a perfectly aligned set of shots. The only time I've been able to avoid crop is with a solid color background that meats all the sides of the frame.

    Rick
  • Unbrok3nUnbrok3n Major grins Posts: 444Registered Users Major grins
    edited December 31, 2008
    rnickl wrote:
    Losing a bit from the edge of the frame is inevitable. As you move closer to the subject to change your focal point you'll lose edge of the frame you had in the first shot.

    You can minimize it with a steady hand but you'll still need some cropping with even a perfectly aligned set of shots. The only time I've been able to avoid crop is with a solid color background that meats all the sides of the frame.

    Rick


    I dont mean the edges, I know cropping is inevitable. I mean on the edges of the actually subject (in this case the frog)
    In ever stack with 3 or more frames ive done, every thing seems like its off...like the edges of things inside the picture are doubles, or tripled, etc.

    Is there something im missing maybe??
    graphic designer/photographer
  • Lord VetinariLord Vetinari Smugbug Posts: 15,021Registered Users Major grins
    edited December 31, 2008
    Unbrok3n wrote:
    I know im kind of bringing this thread up from the grave, but im starting to do a lot of serious stacking, and I have some questions. When I try to do a stack with like 5 or 6 frames, even after doing it manually, there seems to be a lot of overlapping on the outside of the image. You can see it towards the top of the frog by the eye...i dont know if youd call this halos...
    SHould I be doing something more specific when I choose the points? Also, this wasnt taken with a tripod so each pic could be a little off. Any help is appreciated...i have dozens of groups of pics I want to stack...and I want to make sure im doing it right! Thanks

    http://provethesunshine.smugmug.com/photos/445640147_aXjwP-M.jpg

    Hi - yes they are what I call halos - you tend to get them on high contrast edges. Whilst they can be reduced by better alignment when taking and processing the stack I often still get them in my stacks.

    You either have to manually clone the halos out or you can use the healing brush tool in PS to paint the same in focus part from the original stack slice onto the stacked picture.

    Brian V.
  • Unbrok3nUnbrok3n Major grins Posts: 444Registered Users Major grins
    edited December 31, 2008
    OK, I will try that. I havnt done a lot of cloning or healing, but I will experiment.
    Is there a way to improve processing the stack? Like when you choose the points or something?
    I really appreciate your help!
    graphic designer/photographer
  • GOLDENORFEGOLDENORFE Super Moderator Posts: 4,602Super Moderators moderator
    edited December 31, 2008
    Unbrok3n wrote:
    OK, I will try that. I havnt done a lot of cloning or healing, but I will experiment.
    Is there a way to improve processing the stack? Like when you choose the points or something?
    I really appreciate your help!


    it just takes practise to get the frames better aligned when taking them.
    czp aligns alot better than older version czm by the way.
    you can also take a frame with good sharp outline and use layer mask to show good edge through over stacked image, easyer than clone ing sometimes.
    phil
  • rnicklrnickl Big grins Posts: 56Registered Users Big grins
    edited December 31, 2008
    Pardon my poor reading comprehension skills, you did say around the subjects eye :)

    Like Brian said you end up with these on occasion and you need to clone them out. I have been getting decent results using auto align. I did download the newer CombineZP software and there is a stacking macro called "Pyramid Stack" which seems to do a better job with halos than the other methods.

    For me it just seems to be a bit of a crap shoot when these halos come up. I've had a couple shots aligned very well off tripod but needed a lot of work after stacking. Then again I've had bad hand held shots where the subject even moved and had to do very little touch up work.headscratch.gif I have noticed deeper stacks seem to be a bit more prone to halos.

    Rick
  • Unbrok3nUnbrok3n Major grins Posts: 444Registered Users Major grins
    edited January 1, 2009
    Thank you everyone! I am going to see what results I can get
    graphic designer/photographer
  • Unbrok3nUnbrok3n Major grins Posts: 444Registered Users Major grins
    edited January 2, 2009
    For some reason I just cant get a decent stack.
    Ive tried dozens of times, and with different sets. I downloaded combinezp, and even tried the pyramid stack, and still get these results. I am doing it in manual mode the way that is described at the beginning of this thread...Id appreciate any help.
    Heres was happens every time:

    http://provethesunshine.smugmug.com/photos/446954590_vtgA7-L.jpg

    and the images were shot on a tripod..
    Thanks!
    graphic designer/photographer
  • Unbrok3nUnbrok3n Major grins Posts: 444Registered Users Major grins
    edited January 2, 2009
    Heres another example...this is a little more obvious. This one was on auto.
    I just dont understand how it could be this bad...

    http://provethesunshine.smugmug.com/photos/446976363_j4FML-XL.jpg
    graphic designer/photographer
Sign In or Register to comment.