Shooting Challenge: 14 Fascinating Close-Ups

Shooting Challenge: 14 Fascinating Close-Ups

I love macro photography – I just happen to not be that great at it. I always put the blame on my camera, but it’s not true that you need to have a fancy-shmancy DSLR to pull off a cool shot. This week’s shots include point-and-shoots – and even a cameraphone.


Joseph Poole

Pentax *ist DL2
Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 DG Macro at 300mm
F8.0 1/125 ISO800

I thought this Cherry Shrimp would make a good subject but of course it kept moving around. I shone a bright torch on it and like how the light goes through making the shadow orange. Using a big lens wasn’t ideal as I was shooting from halfway across the room and I would’ve liked to zoom in further.


Marcus Cher

At last a photography challange I could sink my teeth into.

As you can see it’s a half eaten nectarine. I love the subtle imperfections in the skin and the tonal variance in the flesh.

I shot it as a 9 frame HDR on my Canon 7D and combined them together to get this detailed image. YUM!

Photos exposed from 1/125 – 1/2 second
ISO 125
55 MM
Daylight White Balance

Jonathan Ward

Taken with an Olympus E-500 40-150mm, f3.5-5.6. Shutter speed 1/160 ISO160 f4.5. Hoya +2 Close-up filter. light editing in picasa.

Went for a trip to Balls Head this weekend and decided that it would be a perfect spot for some macro photos! this photo was taken pretty soon after we turned up. i basically just went point and shoot 😛 the hoya filter provides some very soft blurring in macro shots, and even the focussed part of the image is quite diffuse, lending a dreamy effect to the photo! enjoy!


Daina Peet

I took this photo with a Canon EOS 400D DIGITAL. The Exposure time was 1/100 second and the ISO speed was ISO-800. The Focal Length was 55 mm and I didn’t use a flash.

The object in my photograph is a little beaded ball, that was bought for a cause in Africa. It is a beautiful little keychain, that symbolises the connection between countries.


Ben White

Equipment: Canon 60D with EF-S 15-85mm
Settings: 1/50s, ISO 100, f 5.6
Technique: Used boardroom table for stability and used flip out screen/magnify to check focus. Graded in post with photoshop/plugins.
Story: Plan was to get outside in the park for this one, but it was rainy today. Looking forward to more challenges, great excuse to learn and just get shooting!


Craig Coley

The attached photo was taken with my trusty Nikon D40 with a Nikkor 35m F1.8 Prime with a 10x Macro attachment screwed onto the end.

The screw on Macro attachments are abit tricky to get focus with, but can produce some good shots.

I have increased the saturation of the image slightly to bring the blue eye of the little furr balls out, otherwise its as shot.


Ben Foster

Camera: Canon 7D
Lens: 25y/o Panagor 28mm f/2.8 + 65mm extension tube (13mm+21mm+31mm tubes)
Aperture: f/16
Exp: 8sec
ISO: 100

I had been experimenting with macro photography quite a bit lately using some old lenses and extension tubes that used to belong to my grandpa. I hadn’t tried with all extension tubes added together so this challenge gave me an excuse to get out the tripod and an LED torch to try and shoot as close as I possibly could! This shot is of green sprinkles, on green icing on a green cup cake. The sprinkles are about 1mm on the short side.
I took about 20 shots to get one I liked, and it was super hard getting the focus with a fully manual lens as well as hand holding a torch up to a ~5mm gap between the subject and lens. I go too close at one point and ended up with icing all over the lens.


Jason Round

Similar to some recent shots I did for my ‘Plastic Soldier Project’ ( ), I decided to slap this one together just for Gizmodo. The project’s just for a laugh, but I’ve become quite addicted to it. It’s almost like being a kid again. The soldiers themselves are in an aquarium with mud and debris thrown against the walls for a little more in-your-teeth grit. Everything here is in the shot. It is not composited together. I lit the soldiers with a $2 LED torch during the exposure. Processing was simply adding a vignette and a high-pass filter for a bit more ‘pop’. As I don’t own a dedicated macro lens, I used my 28-70mm f2.8 at 70mm in as close as it would go against the glass. I shot using a Canon 1D MkII in manual at 100 ISO, f13 and just over a second worth of exposure.


Art Ushenin

Iso 200 f4 40,nikon d700 with Tamron 90mm
Shot with tripod and small led flashlight, Photo looks very colorful and sharp, however some of it lost in a compression 🙁
Most of the light from the window


Matthew Predny

Camera: Canon 550D, Lens: Canon 18-55mm IS Kit Lens, Shutter speed: 1/50, ISO: 800, Aperture: f/5.6, Focal Length: 55mm
I’m only new to photography, but I had it set to Manual for this shot.

We just had some new baby lizards hatch after a couple of months of incubation. This is the second to hatch of a group of 7 eggs.
The shot was taken handheld with me standing over their little fast-food-container-incubation-box, zoomed in. Lizards are odd animals to have as pets and usually i find it embarrassing that my mother and brother both have such a strong fascination with them, but they can make for some great photo opportunities. Hopefully next time we have hatchlings i’ll have a more appropriate lens to capture it with.

Oh and by the way: I’m not sure if this counts as a macro shot or not considering the lens I used? Haha, thanks anyway.


Stephen Manning

My image was shot with an Olympus u1030SW point & shoot camera. Using the camera’s SuperMacro function with the camera upside down to get the lens close to the ground. The camera was positioned about 30-40cm away from my 22mm high R2D2 figure with my 80mm high Gundam F91 figure further behind

Auto SuperMacro mode, ISO 80, f5.6 and 1/80 exposure

Editing was done in GIMP 2.6.10
R2D2 meets Gundam F91…

R2D2 is caught off guard by the Gundam F91 unit sneaking up behind him. As he spins around and comes face to face he is blasted out of existence…


Samuel Hoare

I was out for lunch today with friends; my camera was in my bag. looked down at the side plate, and thought “hey, that looks nice”, so doing what anyone with a camera in their bag would do, I snapped a quick shot.

Taken with a Canon 550D (with Magic Lantern hack installed) and Canon 17-40mm f/4 L. The photo was shot at 40mm, ISO 100, f5.6 (for just a little more depth of field), and 1/80 exposure.


Leo Cadle

I missed out on last weeks challenge so I combined the two. My little RC Helicopter at work against LCD Monitor.

Camera: HTC Desire 2.2 Froyo
ISO: 100
Brightness: +2
Saturation: +1
Effect: None
Flash: None
Resolution: 5MP
Quality: High
Metering: Spot
Flicker Adjustment: ON
Auto Focus: ON
White Balance: Flourescent


Sam Reynolds

I shot this picture on my trusty old Canon EOS 30D. ISO was set to 100, shutter speed at 1/400 and the F-stop to f/4.5.

What’s particularly interesting about this photo is that it was taken guerrilla style with two lenses. I had my 50mm f/1.8 on the body which was all hanging delicately upside down from my tripod. I then grabbed my 17-85mm f/4-f/5.6 zoom lens and turned it around backwards. Through the viewfinder you’re only privy to a very small piece of the picture. If you’ve ever looked backwards through a set of binoculars you’ll have an idea of how it looks. Then there’s the issue of finding your subject. A steady hand is the next battle, any minute movement translates as an out of focus blob, or the loss of the subject entirely…After a good hour or so of playing around with this setup, I managed to snag about 3 useful photos.

The one I’ve decided to share with you today is the wing of a humble house fly. I do hope you enjoy!