Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Macro Photography ... on the road to taking better photos of miniatures

Any miniature painter worth his (or her) salt would recognise the icon below instantly. Yes, the all too familiar macro setting that can be found from the simplest camera phones to high-end Digital Single-Lens Reflex cameras or better known as DSLRs. When I first started out in the hobby I didn't really bother with the hows-and-whys. All I did was put the settings at macro, point and shoot. If the photos didn't come out right, I usually just shrugged my shoulders and snapped away hoping that somehow, magically, a good photo would emerge. Well, they sometimes did but that's not the point. 

As fate would have it, my camera phone decided to die on me right about the time I was thinking of getting a good camera-and-lens-combo to take better pictures of the miniatures that I was painting. So about 9 months ago, me and the missus decided to invest in a DSLR camera (her for the family photos, me for the miniatures) which resulted in us getting the Canon EOS 650D and the Tamron SP AF 90mm F/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 lens. It's a pricey investment but think of it as money saved which would otherwise be spent on models that will never see the light of day. You know what I mean.

Canon EOS 650D and the Tamron Macro Lens

One thing the DSLR has done is force me to try ever harder to paint better because the level of detail that can be captured in photos has ratcheted up tremendously compared to my old camera phone. The ability to capture fine details can expose a badly painted miniature in all its ugly glory. Having had the DSLR camera for sometime, I have picked up some knowledge (and am still learning) which I hope to share in later blog posts. As the saying goes "If you want to learn something teach it". 

What are the settings I need for my camera?
So going forward, I hope to share what I know on macro photography (not necessarily in that order):
1. Aperture versus Shutter Speed
2. Depth of field
3. Lighting (something simple that continues to be a huge challenge to master, for me anyway)
4. ISO settings
5. Photo taking techniques
6. In-camera effects
7. Flash - to use or not to use
8. Backgrounds
9. Post-editing on the cheap
10. Making your own light box
11. Other fun stuff


  1. Looking forward to what you share.
    I recently got a cannon 550D and have done well photographing people but not delved past the auto settings yet.
    I hope to learn something along with you :)


  2. The Canon 550D is a nice camera too. =) Yep ... it would be great if we can learn from each other as we use our cameras.

  3. Cool post dude. Nice camera there, very good investment methinks. Looking forward to more post on this subject. I'll be the first to sign up to your class :)

    1. Heh heh ... dude you take much better pictures than me ... way better. =) But trying to put up posts on photo-taking tutorials will at least allow me to share what I know as well as force me to learn/master what I was too lazy to look up previously.


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