The Ultimate Guide To Macro (Part 3) - Find your subject

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Find your subject

Macro-shooting opportunities are all around you- here’s where to find a few.

Searching for subject

Description: great macro image

To take great macro images, you must first be able to find great subject. Even when not searching for photos, it pays to be aware of the miniature life all around you in the form or nature, mechanics, food or even abstracts.

Look close to home

Magnificent macro landscapes can be found in your lawn, your fruit bowl or even contained inside the watch on your wrist. You can find beauty in the faces of insects and intricate perfection in the inner workings of a flower.


Description: Nature image

If you’re particularly interested in macro images found in nature, then do your research first. Just like flowers, insects are more prominent at certain times of the year and are often attracted to certain foliage or climates. Visit your local wildlife reserve and talk to the rangers about when you can expect certain species of plants and   insects to crop up.


Typically, many insects are easier to spot at daybreak as the cold night air renders them lethargic. Head out early in the day to capture shots of sleepy subjects who are less likely to fly away at the sight of your camera gear.


Description: Texture plays a key role in the success of macro shots – the ‘touchable’ factor draws the viewer in

Texture plays a key role in the success of macro shots

Great macro shots rely heavily on repeating patterns, symmetry, spirals and geometric shapes. Pay particular attention to good composition and move your lens around the scene until you find what it is that you are looking for. Composition should be as important in this genre as it is for landscape, with the rule of thirds and the golden spiral coming into play frequently. Moving the frame a few milimetres left or right is often enough to make or break an image.

It’s not all about nature

The great thing about macro photography is that there are limitless subject within your reach, no matter where you live. Look out for snowflakes, frost on a window, beehives, patterns on a plant, flower petals, food or the intricate technicalities of gadgets such as the cogs in a watch or the springs in a lock.

Subject within subject

Often a large subject is comprised of close-up elements that make great abstract macro photos. Think about the feathers of a bird or the skin texture of a lizard. Animal eyes are arresting, as are flower stamens or the gills of a mushroom. Abstract shots create intrigue and hold people’s gaze, which equals success. You’ll be amazed how many subjects are lurking within just a few feet of you.

Description: Repetition of shapes can catch interest and engage the observer

Repetition of shapes can catch interest and engage the observer

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