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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Hall, Georgia, USA
    Posts
    120

    Default Ok. So you folks with great pictures, what are your secrets?

    I'm a pretty good photographer with normal subjects. I'm new to photographing bees.

    So, I tried a really big lens on a tripod today, and was unhappy with the results.

    Specifically, I was using a 100-200 mm lens, but a fairly cheap one at 4.5. I had the lens at 200, so the F-stop was at 4.5. Tripod, and the fastest exposure I could get. Looking at a rosemary bush in full bloom with 5 or 6 foragers on it.

    I just couldn't get anything special. The autofocus on the camera was wonky (rosemary sprawls, there this lens has an incredibly shallow depth of field). Manual focus was a real challenge. Even with normal sunlight I didn't feel my exposures were fast enough. (that's the 4.5 biting me... I know I can buy a $2000 lens to fix this problem, but I hope you guys give me another way).

    Anthecologist: I would love to hear your setup. Your pictures rule.

    I've got a 50 mm fast lens. Is this what I should be using right up in the bee's faces? I was using a telephoto because I had heard that would eliminate distortions.

    Generally: what is your go-to setup for action bee photography? Tell about lenses, shooting strategy, tripods, accessories and the like.

    Thanks!

    Attached: my best version of today's best photo. Cropped and color balanced. 85% JPEG quality. rosemary for upload.jpg I'm wanting a lot better than this.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    6,386

    Default Re: Ok. So you folks with great pictures, what are your secrets?

    It is hard to say. Sometimes it is the angle of the lights.
    I just put my 7.1 MP digi cam on Macro auto focus mode. It will
    automatically adjust to the bee surrounding all on still pics anyways.
    Does it has auto focus on yours too?
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Hall, Georgia, USA
    Posts
    120

    Default Re: Ok. So you folks with great pictures, what are your secrets?

    My camera has pretty good autofocus, but this particular lens was a real challenge. I had the same issue photographing bees on the landing board... the camera would get the hive in focus, but the bee would be a blur. I ended up focusing manually a few inches in front of the hive, and then shot 100 pictures hoping to get lucky. I didn't... they all stunk.

    I think more light (to solve the shutter speed issue) and a smaller F-stop (to fix depth of field). I'll have to figure how to do that.

    When you guys shoot a bee on a flower, how close are you? A foot? 3 feet?. My 200mm lens has a minimum of 1.4 meters, which was keeping me pretty far away.

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