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Monday, December 20, 2010

Macro shots of products with a Fisheye lens

I’ve been thinking for a while about doing some macro stuff with the fisheye, and today I finally gave it a try. I have a Nikkor 10.fmm f2.8 fisheye lens that I really love. I don’t use it as much as I would because it the pictures tend to get tiring, but every once in a while it comes handy when doing some fishing portraits or landscapes.

This is quite an interesting result.
Not many people know that this lens can focus at a distance of…. I don’t know exactly but basically, you can rub the lens against the subject, as I proved once again today. You can then imagine how special of a macro lens can be. Everything is dramatically distorted; distance between foreground and background absolutely exaggerated, and quite some problems not get in between the light and what you are shooting

Still something that at least will make you smile
Well, if I can be let's say at 2cm from the subject, and have a softbox on top of me or slightly facing towards me, I will have to do some magic trick not to have the shadow of the camera, or my head, covering half of my product. Another issue is how to trigger the flash with the CLS. If I’m under the softbox, it is quite difficult that the sparkle of the pop up on my Nikon can be seen by the SB800 remote unit that is covered by the softbox itself. I leant it today the hard way.

Here we are getting worst, nothing really interesting about it
To find a solution I had to pull the good old’ remote cable and trigger the flash with that one, while putting the other flash in slave. Too bad my chord is so short that the softbox, most of the times, was falling on top of myself and the product. 
Anyway, when I started shooting the lure I had the confirmation that another of my fear was being confirmed. The background, for as wide and tall as it could be, was not enough to cover the 180º vision of the lens. Fortunately is not big deal because the light was quite dim and at 1/200sec and f9 everything turned almost dark (and I had room to further darken it in Lightroom).

Help me say: UGLY!
So I had my happy shooting with the 10.5mm Fisheye, and the results can be seen here, some fun even interesting, some plain awful. I will give it a try again in the future, but I have to work a bit on some details, especially lighting, which can be tricky. For these shots I had my two SB800 through a Lastolite Softbox III on camera left, and an Orbis Ring Flash on camera right

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