Weevil portrait

DavidRGillespieDavidRGillespie Chilliwack, British Columbia, CanadaRegistered Users Posts: 548 Many Grins

I have been working over the past couple of months to build a kit that will get me into the extreme macrophotography range, and think I might have something. My eventual objective is to be able to make images of live predatory mites on leaves under natural conditions. This was shot with a Nikon D80, a Nikon 105 mm lens with an old Nikon 35-70mm zoom reverse mounted on the front. The 105 was at minimum focus distance and, for this shot, an effective f57. The zoom was at 70 mm zoom, and was stopped down one, so I guess f5.6 and infinity focus. I used two Nikon SB 700 flashes, mounted on either side of the lens, with the light filtered through inverted styrofoam coffee cups. I processed the image in Lightroom, did some sharpening then finished sharpening in Photoshop with a high pass filter and a linear light overlay. I cropped this by about 10%, as there was a bit of vignetting (but nothing I can't live with). I would really appreciate thoughts on equipment, technique, etc. In case you are wondering why I used the 35-70 mm zoom, its probably the worst lens Nikon has ever made, and I am willing to risk the rear element in testing.

Comments

  • Lord VetinariLord Vetinari Smugbug Registered Users Posts: 15,520 Major grins
    edited January 11, 2020

    Came out well. It would probably be a bit easier to reverse a smaller lens onto the front of the 105mm, say a 50mm. As this is reversed it can be an old manual lens off ebay but a prime will give better image quality. An alternative would be an add on diopter such as a Raynox MSN 202.

    Brian V.

  • e6filmusere6filmuser e6filmuser Registered Users Posts: 2,755 Major grins

    David,

    Nice work. The eyes of weevils tend to come out dead-looking.

    If you are nervous about the rear of your lens get a filter protection ring, sometimes know as a reverse macro adapter.

    Not all legacy primes will have aperture control function when reversed. Nikon F or AI are a good choice.

    It is the quality of the glass nearest the subject which determines that of the images.

    For the magnification you have in mind I use my Laowa 25mm.

    http://www.venuslens.net/product/laowa-25mm-f-2-8-2-5-5x-ultra-macro-2/ref/140/

    I purchase my Laowa lenses direct from Laowa (Venus Lens)

    Harold

  • DavidRGillespieDavidRGillespie Chilliwack, British Columbia, CanadaRegistered Users Posts: 548 Many Grins

    @Lord Vetinari and @e6filmuser Thanks Brian and Harold for the comments and suggestions. I did some further experimenting last night and discovered that my Nikon enlarger lens (Nikkor EI 50mm f2.8) performs admirably as a diopter on front of the 105 mm. As a bonus, the setup tolerates having extension tubes between the camera and the 105 mm, which gets me into the 5x range. There is no vignetting at the minimum focus distance of the 105 mm so I think this will work for the tiny subjects I have in mind. I hope to some time to process an image or two today to share. Harold, I am curious about your experience with the Laowa 25 mm. I seriously considered purchasing this lens, but it was outside of my current price range. Maybe later this year...

  • e6filmusere6filmuser e6filmuser Registered Users Posts: 2,755 Major grins

    @DavidRGillespie said:
    @Lord Vetinari and @e6filmuser Harold, I am curious about your experience with the Laowa 25 mm. I seriously considered purchasing this lens, but it was outside of my current price range. Maybe later this year...

    David,

    I have images from the lens (always specified) posted here.

    I have previously used diopters or reversed lenses, of which the best reversed was a Schneider HM40, but have never used one lens reversed on another.

    At one stage I was seeking out lenses of longer and longer FL but, at high magnification, there is so little DOF that a short FL often makes a better image.

    Harold

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