sobota, 25 lutego 2012

Canon 60mm f/2.8 Macro - Photos & Videos (Canon 60D)

Canon 60D (previously Canon 1100D - note will be placed under the photos);
Sigma 610 DG-ST with diffuser-softbox (but I prefer natural light);
Optionally - extension tubes (65mm) for higher magnification than 1:1 and Kenko 1.4x extender;
No stacking.

NOTE - some shots I took with reversed Exakta 24mm f/2.8 lens (there will be info about this under the photos). It's cheap method for high magnification macro (with only one or two extension tubes).

You don't have to be registered to add comment (I will be grateful for your opinions and critique).


Macro scale from 1:3 to about 4:1 (first photo is in 1:1 and it's dragonfly called Migrant Hawker. It is one from my first photos which I took with Canon 60mm lens and mounted flash without any diffuser):

 Aperture - f/6.3; shutter speed - 1/200; iso 800 (taken with 1100D)


Aperture - f/11.0; shutter speed - 1/25; iso 100 (taken with 1100D & with the extension tubes)

Big spider in the basement:

Aperture - f/8.0; shutter speed - 5s; iso 100 (taken with 1100D & with the extension tubes)


Aperture - f/16.0; shutter speed - 1/125; iso 400 (with the extension tubes & Kenko 1.4x extender)

 Migrant Hawker (male):

Aperture - f/4.0; shutter speed - 1/200; iso 100 (taken with 1100D)

 Aperture - f/5.6; shutter speed - 1/200; iso 320

 Aperture - f/6.3; shutter speed - 1/125; iso 400


 Aperture - f/5.6; shutter speed - 1/125; iso 160

Aperture - f/4.5; shutter speed - 1/400; iso 100


 Aperture - f/4.0; shutter speed - 1/200; iso 200

Vagrant Darter:

 Aperture - f/8.0; shutter speed - 1/200; iso 250

Aperture - f/8.0; shutter speed - 1/125; iso 500

Aperture - f/8.0; shutter speed - 1/125; iso 500

Black-veined White:

Aperture - f/5.6; shutter speed - 1/125; iso 100


Aperture - f/8.0; shutter speed - 1/50; iso 400

Crab Spider:

Aperture - f/8.0; shutter speed - 1/160; iso 250

Four-Spotted Chaser:

  Aperture - f/5.0; shutter speed - 1/50; iso 200

Banded Demoiselle:

 Aperture - f/13.0; shutter speed - 1/250; iso 100 (with the extension tubes)

Great Tiger Moth:

  Aperture - f/9.0; shutter speed - 1/250; iso 250

The Common Blue:

Aperture - f/11.0; shutter speed - 1/100; iso 400

The Sooty Copper:

Aperture - f/6.3; shutter speed - 1/160; iso 500


 Aperture - f/16.0; shutter speed - 1/160; iso 500 (taken with reversed Exakta 24mm lens)

  Aperture - f/16.0; shutter speed - 1/200; iso 400 (taken with reversed Exakta 24mm lens)


 Aperture - f/16.0; shutter speed - 1/200; iso 100 (taken with reversed Exakta 24mm lens)

Eye of Green-Eyed Hawker:

 Aperture - f/16.0; shutter speed - 1/160; iso 500 (taken with reversed Exakta 24mm lens)

Aperture - f/16.0; shutter speed - 1/250; iso 100 (with the extension tubes & Kenko 1.4x extender)

Azure Damselfly:

 Aperture - f/4.0; shutter speed - 1/500; iso 320

 Aperture - f/13.0; shutter speed - 1/160; iso 250

Aperture - f/14.0; shutter speed - 1/125; iso 200 (with the extension tubes & Kenko 1.4x extender)


Aperture - f/10.0; shutter speed - 1/160; iso 500

Green Forester:

Aperture - f/4.5; shutter speed - 1/125; iso 200


 Aperture - f/13.0; shutter speed - 1/125; iso 100

Spider and his victim:

 Aperture - f/8.0; shutter speed - 1/250; iso 100 (with the extension tubes)

 Cabbage Butterfly:

Aperture - f/4.0; shutter speed - 1/160; iso 250

Damselflies (different spieces):

Aperture - f/8.0; shutter speed - 1/125; iso 800

Aperture - f/5.0; shutter speed - 1/50; iso 100

 Aperture - f/2.8; shutter speed - 1/250; iso 200

Aperture - f/2.8; shutter speed - 1/200; iso 250

  Aperture - f/4.0; shutter speed - 1/100; iso 200

Aperture - f/8.0; shutter speed - 1/80; iso 400

Aperture - f/13.0; shutter speed - 1/100; iso 2000


 Aperture - f/7.1; shutter speed - 1/200; iso 200

My cat Bobo:

Aperture - f/7.1; shutter speed - 1/250; iso 100

...and Nikita:

 Aperture - f/6.3; shutter speed - 1/200; iso 100

Aperture - f/6.3; shutter speed - 1/200; iso 100

48 komentarzy:

  1. Those are some awesome images! I especially like the video.

  2. Beautiful photos! I love your cat and the soundtrack in the ant video was very pretty, all these birds.

    1. Thanks.
      I appreciate that You spent some time here :]

  3. Love your website, just amazing work. This is THIRDSTONE by the way

  4. Really great shots- they look quite scary when you get that close- you might want to think about selling some of these as stock images.

    1. Hello, thanks for Your opinion.
      Maybe I will try my luck on those sites. Now I am trying my luck with AdSense and still I need one step to get perfect shots on high magnification macro.

  5. Nice collection.

  6. Great close ups- and clever use of flash

  7. Great pictures! Were all of these handheld? Or did you use a tripod?

    From what I understand about reverse macro photography...I can just purchase any ol' FD vintage lens and get the reverse ring off eBay and then be ready to roll?

    I'd also be very interested to know how far you had to be away from your subject in each of these photos - I know some critters are much more 'flighty' than others, so it would make sense to be farther away from the subject. Can you give me an idea of the distance?

    Thanks in advance! And again, awesome photos!!!

    1. Thanks!
      All these photos I took without tripod (except little grasshopper because I record video too).
      If You like to take shots with reversed lens - read my post here:

      Minimal distance was about 4cm as I remember (when I took those high magnification shots like eyes of damselflies), everything depends on scale (1:1 - about 9cm with 60mm for macro - example in first photo with migrant hawker).

    2. Thanks for the extra info. I have the set of 3 Kenko extension tubes, which seem to be what you were using in your Canon 60D setup. Looks like you had all 3 on there (equaling 65mm), then your 60mm lens. Is that all? Or did you have something on the front of the 60mm?

      But you said that you used an Exacta 24mm f/2.8 lens REVERSED for most of these, correct? Do you have a picture of your set up for this? and the equipment used? I'm guessing you had a reverse ring that you purchased off eBay in order to attach the lens backward. And then I could just use any old/vintage FD lens with manual aperture (you lose this feature when you do reverse, right)? Did you also combine the Kenko with the reverse ring? Just very curious how you did this, and what your setup was like.

      Your pics are amazing and so inspiring, so I thank you for any help you can be so I can try this myself. Just need to get the correct equipment, and hopefully not spend an arm & a leg. And what patience you must have had - especially having to get that close to your subject (4-9 cm!!!) I'm guessing the bigger the lens you reverse, the farther away you could potentially be, right?

      Sorry for so many questions all at once...

    3. You will find info under the each of photo when I used reversed lens and when I used 60mm with extension tubes and the same set up with 1.4x extender. If You see only *exif info it means that I used only 60mm lens (minimal distance is 9cm for 1:1 as You know).
      Yes - You can use any lens with this ring (You can buy this ring also in typical shop with photo accesories too), but as I know, the best results gives wideangle lenses. I didn't tried reversed lens with the 1.4x extender, but maybe I will in the next season ;) Of course for high magnification macro You will need flash and diffuser too.
      Set up with reversed lens looks very simple - camera + extension tubes (one, two or all) + ring + reversed lens.

      About patience - yes, sometimes You will need to spend hours to take some shots, but sometimes You will be lucky and insects will ignore You (especially in the early morning or when they're eating). I started one year ago with little idiot-cam and I had to be very close to take macro shots (5 cm for about 1:3 macro).

      Thanks for Your opinion, I am glad if someone likes my work :)

  8. Great info! You mentioned wide angles work the best...but you have to get really close to the subject as a result...would a 100mm or 135mm old FD lens (or newer) work well for being a little further away from the subject? Have you tried this? Also, I'm guessing the f stop isn't as important since you used flash and will stop down anyway to open things this correct? For example.. 135mm f/4... Do you recommend using a prime lens on the end, or have you ever used a zoom lens to cover more range when doing macro either with extension tubes or reverse ring or both...? I have my eye on a canon 35-105 f/ 3.5 lens...would this work well? Thought it would be nice to cover a range, although I hear you can lose some quality..

    Also, you mentioned a flash and diffuser. Is there a cheaper route to go with a flash? I just don't know that much about flash and the functions needed, but would be interested if there is a more moderate way to go.

    1. First thing - wideangle lens like old Takumar or mine Exakta are sharp lenses for this "super macro" shots. As I know the best results will give You other, sharp prime lenses too (there's info why, just search in google about it). It's a little hard for me to describe why and I don't want to write here those technical aspects of this, because I am not a master of english language ;)
      I think that 100mm in "reverse mode" will give you more vignetting and worst quality and distance to the object will be very similar like with 50mm or 24mm. With reversed lens You will need to use aperture at f/11-f/16 because DO is very low (I think that the best combination with reversed lens is one-two extension tubes, not a full set).

      Flash and diffuser are very important, without it forget about macro in high magnification. You don't need to buy flash like Canon EX series, search those for 100-200$ (Sigma, Metz). Diffuser and short distance between it and the object is important to avoid "burned eyes" effect (big white spots from the flash on the eyes).

      If You have cash You can always buy good prime lens for macro like Canon macro 50mm (max 1:2) or 60/100mm (1:1), next experiment with all those things like extension tubes etc - like me ;] Macro with reveresed lens is a good way to reach 3:1 magnification or higher, but prime lens for macro is more "universal".

    2. Thanks once again for your advice and information. I've ordered a Vivitar 28mm f/2.8 FD lens for reverse macro, as well as a reverse adapter ring to fit the lens. And I already have the extension tubes, so I think I'm good to go as far as lenses are concerned.

      My next issue is about the flash. I think that I will go with the Canon Speedlight 420ex - it's a little smaller than the Sigma flash you use (and I've heard that the Sigma is a little slow between flash loads, is this accurate?) but about the same size. Then, I need to get a flash diffuser similar to what you have ( Now, I also saw that you had some TTL cord attached as well. What exactly does this do? Does it just allow you to take the flash off and extend the flash out farther than the camera, or to put it on a stand away from the camera - is that all? And do you find yourself using it often, or just keeping it on the shoe of your camera? If you suggest I get one, I've found the canon version ( and an off brand version ( - would the off brand work just fine you think?

      I've also seen some setups where brackets are involved...but not sure if this is better than what you have - just having the diffuser kind of sitting on/in front of/above the lens glass. I think your setup looks pretty good in your picture at the top, unless you've found a better one since this post.

      Do the items I've listed seem like a good approach to get me what I need?

      Thanks again!

    3. Sigma is ok, it's slow in one mode - when it gives most powerful light, but I am not using this mode in macro (it's too strong and as I said - diffuser have to be very close to the object).
      There's many diffusers, so You can take similar to mine or bigger :) You can also put something inside to soften the light more (I put plastic diffuser from led light good thing is also material from the medical apron or thin tissue).
      TTL cord is very useful in super macro - point about diffuser near the eyes of insects ;] Off brand works fine.
      Bracket is a good thing too, but I didn't saw those "special" for high magnification macro. Many people are creating those things like here:

  9. Completely inspiring...
    Just got one question hope i can find an answer for it, what kind of ttl cord or bracket are u using, could u post a link in ebay or amazon for it ;)
    thanks ;)

    1. Hello.
      I am using non-original ttl cord (1,5 m). Unfortunately I can't find this on amazon or ebay, but I think that all those are the same - made in China, You know... ;) It works fine, but there's one issuse - sometimes if I am using live view, my flash will do weird things ("self-flash" on highest power mode or highest power flash on low power mode).

  10. i see, so are u using any kind of bracket, if not how could hold the flash like that ;o?
    thanks for the previous explanation btw ;)

    1. Yes, Sometimes I am using bracket, but usually I prefer "configuration" from the second photo :)

    2. if you explain configuration setup that would be grateful ;)

    3. What do You want to know? ;) I think that everything about my equipment is on this post with 2 photos, so I don't know what else I can write here...

  11. Pozdrowienia z Białorusi. Dziękujemy za skrupulatnej pracy. Makrofotagrafiya, to jest hobby, które wymaga dużego talentu i dokładność! Bardzo zadowolony, że na swoim blogu. Powodzenia w pracy.

    1. Dzięki serdeczne :)
      Pozdrawiam również.

  12. so cool;)
    did you use Canon 1100d for all of them?

    1. upss sorry i read it:)

  13. beautiful work and great share! Still I don't get the distance between your camera (sensor) and the subject, in case dragon fly and butterfly you can't stay closer to the subject, how did you make it? I'm planing to get either extension tube or close-up lens but I don't know which one gives better working distance. thanks

    1. Thanks :)
      Min. distance (for 1:1) is 9 cm. With extension tubes it will be about 6 cm.
      About staying close to them - it's a matter of practice and knowledge of behaviour of those insects. My first camera was a little idiot-cam with macro (about 1:3) where I needed to be very close to the subjects - about 5 cm.
      Good luck!

  14. Hi, first of all the 'wow' images that inspiring me for macro photography. May I know what is that flash holder you are using between the flash and the hot-shoe of your camera? I have already the extension tubes but sometimes am suffering for enough lights. The gear you are using seems very flexible to me and really thinking of getting one. Thanks you very much in advance. Regards, Sid

    1. Hello.
      I am using only ettl cord (delta) for flash :)

    2. Dzień dobry,

      moge sie spytać, gdzie pan kupil ten " ettl cord (delta)"? Szukalem na eBay, ale
      nie znalazlem czegoś takego. [prepraszam za zly jezyk polski].

      Dzienkuje bardzo i pozdrawiam!
      Vít Hotárek

    3. Witam.
      Kupiłem w jednym z polskich sklepów internetowych, ale myślę, że można dostać coś podobnego na, jak na przykład to:

    4. Dziękuje bardzo panu za odpowiedź. Kabel ten jest łatwo kupić, ale źaden nie ma te glowe obrotowa
      (by ja moglem zgiąć lampe błyskowa przed/nad obiektiw). Ten pan zakupil oddzielnie?

      Vit Hotarek,Czechy

    5. Szukałem tego modelu kabla i wygląda na to, że już go nie produkują. Znalazłem tylko takie modele (z obrotową głowicą):
      Nie wiem czy są one wciąż dostępne. Ten mój ma długoś max 1,5 metra i jest firmy delta.

    6. Takze szukalem i taki sam kabel niemozliwo znaleźć :-)
      I tak dziękuje za checi. Zycze dobrego swiatla!

      Vit Hotarek

  15. Fantastic macro photos. How did you managed to get close to the subject and not scare them away and did you use a tripod?

    1. Thanks.
      I started with a little compact camera with macro function. 5 cm to the object for about 1:3 macro. One year of experience with this + 1 with my first dslr was enough ;) Sometimes I am using tripod (especially for videos).

  16. Superbly awesome captures and videos, adorable little furbabies as well. =0)