Butterflies Make Excellent Macro-Photography Subjects

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If you’re interested in macro photography, you may want to try taking a few shots of some colorful butterflies to add to your portfolio or collection. These beautiful creatures are quite sensitive and fragile and you’ll need to make sure you don’t get too close or they’ll simply fly sway.

They can also be a little difficult to capture on camera since they like to constantly float around as they gather up nectar from flowers.

tripod doesn’t always help since the butterflies move around pretty quickly. However, you can still utilize one to stabilize your camera and if you keep the tripod head loose you’ll be able to move the camera quickly. The best time to take butterfly shots is usually in cooler weather as they’re less active due to the lack of heat. You can usually get closer to them earlier and later in the day.

Butterflies Make Excellent Macro-Photography Subjects

It’s a good idea to let the butterflies come to you instead of chasing them around. This means you’ll need to be pretty patient. If you hang around the flowers in your backyard they should eventually make their way over to you. If you approach a butterfly there’s a good chance it’s going to take off simply because it’s frightened. However, they aren’t as scared if you’re sitting still.

In addition, these lovable little creatures absolutely love being in the sun and if you wait in a sunny area you’ll have a better chance of taking the photo. If you happen to cast a shadow when trying to take the shot the butterfly might decide to fly away at that point and seek out a sunnier and warmer spot.

When taking photos of butterflies it’s a good idea to position the sensor of the camera so that it’s more or less parallel to the wings of the butterfly. You really want to make sure the wings and body of the butterfly are sharply in focus and positioning the sensor parallel should help you achieve this. If you use side lighting you may find there will be harsh shadows over the wings of the butterfly.

In addition, if you use backlighting there could be flares. The best way to capture a butterfly is to take your shots when its front is lit with the sun. Since it may be floating around in the air and moving from flower to flower you’ll need to use a fast shutter speed to capture a sharp, clear image. You may also want to adjust your ISO to about 400 as it will help you to freeze the action.

Another tip would be to take the shots in the JPEG mode instead of in RAW. Shooting in JPEG will enable you to take a burst of photos, which will increase your chances of getting some sharp shots if the butterfly won’t stay still for you. You can also use RAW if you don’t need to take continuous photos, and it’s a personal preference.

Butterflies are ideal subjects for macro photography and you’ll be surprised at how enjoyable it can be to spend a sunny afternoon capturing them on camera.

Posted in: Types Of Photography

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