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Western Wild Petunia

This is one of those posts that is more technical in nature than artistic. I recently purchased some new equipment for my white box so I decided to use it to create some very detailed images of flowers. I plucked a Western Wild Petunia from my front yard and created three focus-stacked images of the flower from different angles and varying lighting conditions. The piece of equipment I was using is called a bellows. It is an accordion-like, pleated expandable device that attaches between the camera body and the lens.

Macro photographers often use bellows or extension tubes to obtain higher magnification. Extension tubes are a fixed length (e.g. 12mm, 20mm, 35mm, etc.) while bellows allow for small incremental adjustments. The one I was using was a 130mm model. The minimum distance is 50mm while the maximum distance is 130mm. This means that I can adjust the range from 50-130mm in very small increments. Using extension tubes would require me to change out tubes manually versus turning a knob. In addition, the bellows model that I chose also serves as a focus rail. A very versatile piece of equipment.

Western Wild Petunia
Western Wild Petunia

The images in this composite were taken with my Canon EOS 5D Mark III using my Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro Lens attached to the Novoflex Auto Bellows. The camera was set on Manual mode with the aperture set at f/11 shutter speed at 1/6th of a second and the ISO set at 100. I captured 110 images in three sets in my white box. I lit the subject with three LED lights. I brought the images together using Helicon Focus (Method C – Pyramid). I used Lightroom, Photoshop and Nik Color Efex Pro to finalize the image.

You can see the profile for this plant by clicking here.  Please use the section below to post your comments, questions or suggestions.

T. Kahler Photography
© 2016 T. Kahler Photography

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