Bees on flowers (close-ups)

December 24, 2023  •  Leave a Comment

I have not ventured into the small world of macro photography. Close-ups are close enough for me. This is a genre I would like to get involved in a bit more in the future. All that is needed is a close focusing lens. When dealing with close-ups of plants, the focal length of the lens may not be that important. When shooting insects close-up, I prefer a slightly longer lens between 150 and 200mm on a full frame camera. This puts a bit of distance between me and the insects so that I do not bother them. And, if I have to be honest, puts me a bit more at ease that my chances of being stung by a bee or a wasp is much less.

It is a pity that there is a flower behind the flower the bee is on because I find it distracting. So picking the right flower is important. Backgrounds need to be in the background, meaning that they should not intrude or compete for attention with the main attraction of the image.

It helps to pick a flower and a background that make for a pleasing image all by itself. The insect is just the cherry on top. Remember, we are not taking macro images here where it is all about the insect or a fraction of the flower. We are just taking close-up images. The better the image can stand on its own without the insect the better the image will be with the insect.

With close-ups we can go in quite closely, thus making the insect more important and central to the success of the image. This means that we will have to cut parts of the flower off. There is no problem in doing so but remember the rule of thumb. We cut, we never nick. Cuts are deliberate while nicks seem like mistakes, as if they should not have been made. So cut boldly, don't cut near the edge of something.

This beetle also appeared. In this case, the flower in the background does not bother me as much as the one if the first image because there is separation between the two flowers. The one in the back is not causing confusion leaving the viewer to wonder what is going on. As the beetle moves around, wait for that perfect pose, the perfect position.

          As with any movement or of something that lives, always leave more room in front of it than behind it. If your garden is not that nice, just drive around and find someone else's garden that is beautiful. Be respectful and kindly request permission before you start photographing in their garden. But someone mostly seem to have a great garden somewhere. We just need to find them and spend some time there to see what we can find to photograph. Give close-ups a try.


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