Harder than it Looks

June 5, 2009

A butterfly rests in front of a palm frond

A butterfly rests in front of a palm frond

You’d think this was a pretty simple picture.  And in some ways it is.  But I have to say that photographing butterflies is much more challenging than you’d think.  It really requires you bring your full mental toolbox to bear.  There are issues with “posing” the subject of course.  Then finding an attractive background.  Making the light interesting is…interesting.  Controling the depth of field at high mags is tough, as is balancing fill flash. Motion blur is almost always possible.  I’ve found my rejects far outstrip the number of keepers I get from a session.  Canon 20D with 100mm macro and Canon ring flash. Shot at the Butterfly Rainforest at the University of Florida’s Museum of Natural History.  No tripods allowed (except for some special occasions) so pretty much everything is handheld.

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