James D Law

Homemade(ish), super-cheapo
macro snaps!

Kellogs Milk Bottle

For ages I've wanted to get a macro lens for my digi SLR - partly to snap the things I find during my new favourite past time (more about that later) - but mostly 'cos close up things are cool!

Problem is the real Canon lenses are very expensive and the likes of Sigma or Tamron were still pushing it for what in reality is a bit of a luxury lens for me.

So, I spied one of these on Amazon and for 11 quid inc. postage it was too much to resist - so I went ahead and ordered.

When it turned up I spent 5 mins trying to screw the lens onto my 50mm prime until I realised a mistake - it needed a 58mm thread so I need a step up ring to make it fit (52mm to 58mm if you're counting).

Instead of being patient and waiting for my next Amazon delivery, I just went ahead and tried holding it in front of the camera instead and, low and behold, it worked!

Check out those lovely blurry vignettes and crazy depth of field Lomo type pics of my kellogs milk bottle - coolio!

Want to try it yourself?

So, step 1 - If you've got a digital SLR (Canon or Nikon in particular) go get one of these: http://amzn.to/uMuyLT

Step 2 - check the thread size (or filter size) of the lens you want to use it with (see below for tips) - you may as well buy a converter at the same time such as: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B0032JIBHK 

Step 3 - wait patiently

Step 4 - when it arrives, unscrew the 'lens' (not really a lens as such, 'cos you can't attach it directly to the camera body) so you have the thinner marco part in your hand (handily, it says MACRO on it!)

Step 4 - Find a suitable subject, keep it clean...  You want loads of light 'cos you're going to be getting nice and close to it, and carefully hold the macro lens in front of lens mounted on your camera.

Step 5 - Actually, switch off auto focus first...

Step 6 - Move the camera nearer the subject until it's nice and sharp - snap!  You'll need to keep very still, I lie on my stomach in a kind of sniper pose!

TIPS:  If you have a zoom lens you can get REALLY close to the subject - but you get an hilarious amount of vignette'ing!  But that can be cool of course.

Try holding the lens at an angle for crazy depth of field effects.

Shoot things that look boring in the real world - the key pad of my house alarm system looks great!


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