In this article I discuss five common mistakes made in macro photography. And I will tell you how to fix the problem.
1. Shooting in direct midday sunlightThe initial mistake often made in macro photography is heading out when the sun is saturated in the sky (midday). While the light during this time period is bright, it is also very harsh and contrasty. Images taken at the moment are difficult to expose well, and colors are far less saturated.
The angle of the sun causes additional problems. It beats directly down on your own subject, causing the underside to become shadowy.
How to fix the problem
You have several options. First, try waiting before the evening, once the light is warm and soft. This may reduce contrast and light your subject more evenly. You might like to cast a darkness on the subject yourself, or find an interest in the shade. This may reduce steadily the extent to which your subject encounters the harsh and contrasty light.
Should you choose choose to get out in midday, you could consider bringing a thumb or even a reflector to include some punch to your images and reduce midday shadows. While this won't negate the difficulties described above, it will reduce them.
2. Shooting dying or dirty subjectsA second common mistake made in macro photography is shooting subjects that are either dying or dirty.
This isn't a really trouble with insect photography, nevertheless when photographing flowers, the condition of your subject is something to view out for. If the edges of a flower are turning brown, I generally wouldn't photograph it. Same task if the guts has some fraying stamens.
Flowers may also become dirty, especially if they are low to the ground. Several small pieces of dirt isn't much to be worried about—it's nothing that cloning can't take care of—but an excessive amount of dirt, and it becomes difficult to obtain a strong image.
How to fix the problem
The initial method just involves inspecting your subject carefully before shooting. If the flower is dying or dirty, find a different flower. You could also consider wiping away small pieces of dirt with your finger or shirtsleeve.
The second method is more challenging and involves hiding the dying areas of the flower through creative compositions. For instance, you can make certain that the wrinkled areas of petals are out of focus, or obscured by another part of the flower.
3. Centering the subjectThis is a common mistake in every forms of photography – placing your subject in the dead center of the frame.
While this might make sense from a visible perspective, it generally results in an uncomfortable, less-than-desirable image. The composition feels imbalanced or boring.
How to fix the problem
In place of placing the subject in the biggest market of the image, stick it off to one side. Try using the rule of thirds. Additionally, you could add some dynamism to the composition by tilting your camera and placing the flower along a diagonal line. This may ensure a much more dynamic image that holds the viewer's eye.
4. Using busy backgrounds and foregroundsA fourth macro photography mistake often made is using foregrounds and (especially) backgrounds that are messy.
For instance, messy backgrounds might have splotches of colors, might be full of slightly out-of-focus elements, or have sudden transitions from light to dark or dark to light. Messy foregrounds, on one other hand, include branches, twigs, and other flowers that distract the viewer and get in how of the key subject.
How can this issue be fixed?
I reveal this a lot, but that's because it's such a common (and easily rectified) problem. It involves a little bit of measured consideration before shooting. Simply make sure you will find no distracting foreground or background elements. As discussed above, these generally include branches, twigs, or sticks. Additionally, it might simply be contrasting colors or dark spots.
5. Capturing a subject as the subjectThis final macro photography mistake is just a bit less straightforward: capturing a subject as that subject.
What do I am talking about by this? In fact, it's not all that complicated. Basically, macro photographers often see an appealing subject and attempt to photograph that subject efficiently. The issue is that the topic then lacks interest. It feels like it's section of a snapshot when you wish it to feel such as for instance a deliberate photograph.
If you photograph a rose, don't make an effort to just capture it as a flower. Look for interesting facets of the subject. What is it that made you intend to photograph it in the first place?
Try to go beyond that basic “it is a flower” essence, and communicate something about the flower. Does it have a photogenic center? Colorful petals? An attractive shape? Emphasize this during your photography.