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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Flower Photography Using Telephoto Lenses

To do flower photography I normally like most of us use a macro lens, like the Canon 100mm, or Lensbaby with macro accessories, but is doesn’t mean that this is the only lenses available for that kind of work.

I like to use my Canon 100-400 to compress the image and get a shallow depth of field, like I did with the first image below, one of the reason was that the flower was far away, and surrounded by other objects that I didn’t want in the picture, I had to isolate the flower, using the larger aperture f5.6 at 400mm was the only way to get the result I was looking for. The second image was done at the zoo, I couldn't get close, no choice I needed to use my big lens, at 250mm.

Canon 5D Markii, Canon 100-400 at 400mm, f5.6, 1/320sec, ISO200. added texture
Canon 5D Markii, Canon 100-400 at 250mm, f5, 1/160sec, ISO200

Another fantastic lens, is the Canon 70-200 f2.8 IS USM now replace by the Canon 70-200 f2.8 IS 11 USM and it's quite expensive, if you can find the first generation like mine you can save some cash, and it's a great lens, I used it to get a shallow depth of field, compress the image and isolate my subject,  sometimes I attached a Canon 500D, Close-up lenses/filter for quick and easy close-up photography. The first image was done at a market, I couldn’t get close to the flowers, but I was able to get the image using my Canon 70-200 at 200mm, the second image was done with the 500D attached to my 70-200 at 180mm, that was in the middle of winter, these little dead flowers were so small that it was the only way to get the shot.

Canon 5D Markii, Canon70-200 at 200mm, f9, 1/40sec, ISO200

Canon 5D Markii, Canon 70-200 at 180mm, with 500D Close up Lens/filter, f16, 1/200sec, ISO800

Another lens that I used frequently for flowers is my all times favorite my Canon 24-105, this lens is always in my bag, if I had to keep only one lens that will be it. The first image was done using my 24-105 at 75mm at the larger aperture possible f4 on that lens to get a shallow depth of field and isolate my subject. The second one was done using the same lens but adding an 25mm extension tube, I used Kenko 12, 20 & 36mm and Canon 25mm.  
Extension tubes are designed to enable a lens to focus closer than its normal minimum focusing distance. They have the effect of magnifying your subject and are useful for macro photography, allowing you to convert almost any lens into a macro lens while maintaining its original optical quality. If I don’t have the space to bring my macro lens, I bring my tube, I always have the Canon 25mm with me.

Canon 5D Markii, Canon 24-105 at 75mm, f4, 1/125sec, ISO200

Canon 5D Markii, Canon 24-105 at 105mm, f4, 1/80sec, using a Canon 25mm extension tube

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