Take it your­self

Getaway (South Africa) - - Photography -

Use these tips to cap­ture tiny droplets af­ter rain or dew

EQUIP­MENT

DSLR A macro lens with a 1:1 mag­ni­fi­ca­tion ra­tio shows up de­tail best. Can’t af­ford a macro lens? Buy an extension tube – a lightweight, hol­low tube that fits be­tween your cam­era mount and lens, al­low­ing you to fo­cus on closer ob­jects. A tri­pod and shut­ter-re­lease ca­ble help com­bat cam­era shake. Com­pact Switch to Macro mode and use the multi-shot op­tion to in­crease your chances of get­ting a per­fectly clear im­age. Smart­phone Try out a macro lens at­tach­ment, such as the Thinker (R649, lime­lens.co.za).

SET­TINGS

Switch to man­ual fo­cus and use a nar­row aper­ture (no wider than f/16). Set your shut­ter speed to 1/250 sec and ad­just your ISO un­til you get a good ex­po­sure.

PRAC­TI­CAL

Cre­ate these pic­tures on sunny days and look for droplets hang­ing in the light. The stronger light will re­veal bet­ter con­trast and colour. Ex­per­i­ment with an­gles and dis­tance to get the whole flower re­fracted clearly in the droplet. Set your cam­era to mag­ni­fied Live View mode and man­u­ally fo­cus un­til the flower in the droplet is pin-sharp. Find sub­jects with com­ple­men­tary colours (see Know your Stuff on the next page) and iso­late these colours to in­crease vis­ual im­pact. Plant a stick in the ground and tether your plant to it. This will keep it – and the wa­ter droplet on it – as still as pos­si­ble.

STARTER TIP Prac­tise at home us­ing drops of glyc­er­ine. They last longer and al­low more time to get it right. AM­A­TEUR TIP Look for dif­fer­ent sub­jects to re­fract such as build­ings, trees or recog­nis­able land­marks. PRO TIP Look out for in­sects. The com­bi­na­tion of in­sect, wa­ter droplet and re­fracted flower within will give you in­cred­i­ble im­agery.

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