Insects #198D, 181E, 159D, 194D, 195D, 157B, 178B, 196D, 206B, 202B & 203B

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July 27, 2013

Having just purchased my first new camera in thirty-three years last month, finally saving enough money to buy a Canon EOS 60D body and an adapter which allows me to use all my old FD lens, I checked out several digital photography for dummies books from my local library to get caught up on modern technology.  One such book I read was about macro photography, even though I have been shooting close-ups of flowers for several years.  Owning a 50mm, 100mm and 70-160mm zoom macro lens along with 25mm and 50mm extension tubes, I thought I had been getting extremely close to the flowers I photographed.

However, while reading the book, I learned that I was not utilizing these lens and extension tubes in the right combination in order to take full advantage of their macro capabilities.  I was truly amazed by what I had photographed the first time I went outside after reading the correct match-up of lens and tubes to get 1:1 magnification, which is considered life-size.  To see the first photos I shot after having this photographic epiphany, see my previous post Flowers #1369B, 1371B, 1387B, 1376B, 1388B, 1379D & 1390B.  This latest post was shot the following day.  That afternoon, I grabbed my camera and went outside to shoot the smallest flowers that were blooming in my front yard.  I have absolutely no idea what type of flower this is, knowing only that it grows to a height of six to eight inches.  As its bloom is maybe at most a half-inch in diameter, I sat down on the grass and started shooting away.

While shooting, an insect seeking sweet nectar landed on the flower I was focused on.  Again, I have no idea what type of insect it was, however, through the lens it looked about the size of a honey bee.  Thanks to my new digital camera, I was able to shoot many more photos than I ever would have been able to with my old film camera.  After about a dozen photos,  removing the viewfinder from my eye, I was amazed by what I saw.  This insect, which I now believe to be some sort of gnat, was much smaller than what I had expected it to be.  Needless to say, I was impressed not only with my new digital camera but also with that of my new-found knowledge of macro photography.

In the month and a half owning my new camera, I have been sticking my face in close to so many flowers that I have developed an allergy rash above my left eye, that being my non-camera focusing eye.  Shooting nearly 7,500 photos in the past six weeks, I have also strained my right triceps muscle and my carpal tunnel is flaring up rather severely whenever I hold the camera too long.  Then there’s the lower back pain I get from bending over.  However, what’s the old saying, one must suffer for his art?

Steven H. Spring

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