peterbartlett_8537
peterbartlett_8537

Hover Fly on Black Eyed Susan



Sweet Arrow Reserve
Bellbrook, Ohio

Sweet Arrow Reserve
Bellbrook, Ohio
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Awards

Spring Selection Award
Top Choice
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Outstanding Creativity
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Absolute Masterpiece
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Peer Award
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Superior Skill
Bart ferlong
Superb Composition
RavenHawk58

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Behind The Lens

Location
The Bellbrook | Sugarcreek Parks open a new 200+ acre reserve in 2015 - featuring old growth forests and large tracts of farmlands converted to short grass and tall grass/wildflower prairies. This hover fly was taking advantage of the black-eyed susans in the largest prairie.
Time
The image was part a a successful lunchtime photo trip with a team from my office.
Lighting
While I prefer to do wildlife photography in the early morning or evening, the nice this about macro-photography is the fact it is independent from time of day. The lighting is mainly provided from an off-camera flash. I use a Mieke MK-910 with a DIY light diffuser/modifier.
Equipment
Nikon D7000 with a 50mm lens mounting on a reversing ring and extension tubes, off-camera flash featuring a DIY light diffuser/modifier.
Inspiration
I shot a wide variety of subjects, but the goal is to get out and shoot everyday I can. Fortunately there is a small group at my office that are equally as passionate and we try to get out most days a lunch to shoot. In regards to the subject - I love the detail you see in eyes. For me macro-photography is about capturing what you can't see with the naked eye.
Editing
While many macro-insect photos feature image stacking, this image is a single frame. The image was cropped and post-processed using Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop to correct color and remove any dust marks from the sensor.
In my camera bag
All of it! I am usually packed for bird and macro photography. Currently I now shoot with a Nikon D750 and always have the: Nikon 50mm f/1.4 w/ reversing ring, extension tubes, Nikon 85mm f/1.4, Sigma 10-20mm, Nikon 80-200mm f/2.8, all the way up to the Tamron 150-600mm. I use the Mieke MK-910 flash and a variety of store bought and DIY diffusers.
Feedback
Note that with insects - these are all handheld shots. I'd love to use a tripod, but by the time you get a tripod set up, get your lighting right, etc...that bug would be long gone. When you're working this close, the depth-of-field is very small. To solve this problem - take LOTS of pictures. I likely have 20-30 shots of this same hover fly in Lightroom and hopefully one or two are in focus. Sometimes you might even stack two, three or more of these images to get more of the insect "in-focus". No coffee - you want steady hands. Keep in mind, a good day is one or two good photos. This is not like product photography or event photography where you obviously expect more winners. It's hard to get the bugs to listen to photo directions.

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