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Discussion in 'Nature' started by Tecpatl4, Aug 28, 2011.
20mm Panny on E-P1. Manual Focus
I really like the composition and the colours. And I find bees difficult to photograph because they seem to be constantly on the move, and by the time I've got myself organised they have gone. So well done with this capture.
I'm not sure about the focus though. The flower looks ok, but not the bee. Perhaps it was moving? If it was, then 1/40 second is quite slow. I wonder if using a higher ISO might in cases like this give a better result despite the downsides of using higher ISOs. With a higher ISO you could use a faster shutter speed.
I did also wonder about the aperture. f/5 gives rather narrow DOF and I'm wondering how much of the bee was actually within the DOF. Raising the ISO would let you reduce the aperture to get more DOF for close-ups like this. I don't know what the higher ISO characteristics of your camera are like, or how good the image stabilisation is (and btw image stabilisation is often reckoned to not help much with close-ups), but if you could for example use ISO 800 rather than ISO 100 then you could have used 1/80 sec and f/10, or 1/160 sec and f/7.1 (or 1/40 sec and f/14 which FWIW is more like what I would probably have used).
Another thing that comes to mind is where the focus point was placed. With insects on flowers I tend to concentrate on getting the insect in focus, and I often place the focus point on the insect's "neck" (so as to try to get the head and at least some of the body in focus). For some reason (it's a taste thing I suppose) if there is an insect involved I tend not be be too concerned about the flower, leaf or whatever being out of focus.
Of course, adding some more light by using flash is another possibility, but if you don't do a lot of close-up work you might not want to go there.
You must be coming from full-frame land. Diffraction becomes a problem in m43 about f/8, so for maximum sharpness, you want to stay faster than that. But the DOF is doubled for full frame, so that f/8 on m43 is like f/16 for full frame, but with an obvious exposure/shutter speed advantage as you are exposing f/8 instead of f/16.
With the not-so close focusing of the 20, that bee must have been HUGE!
I'm coming from bridge/superzoom, where I would normally use f/8, which is equivalent [EDIT: in terms of DOF] to about f/22 on m43 I believe. With my new G3 I am now using f/22 for macros.
There is a trade-off between loss of sharpness through diffraction and gain of DOF from smaller apertures. It is discussed in this thread, which includes a practical example which shows the impact on a macro image of changing the aperture one stop at a time from f/5.6 to f/22.