Top tips for capturing close-up photos of butterflies, dragonflies and other insects
posted Wednesday, July 10, 2019 at 4:00 PM EDT
For those of us in the northern hemisphere, summer is in full swing. This means that there are many opportunities to photograph butterflies and other insects. Macro photography, especially of moving subjects, comes with its own set of challenges. What are the best techniques you can use to capture sharp macro shots of bugs? In the video below, which comes to us from NatureTTL, photographer and Nikon Ambassador Ross Hoddinott shares varying tips and tricks to ensure you get the best close-up shots of six-legged critters.
For gear, Hoddinott used a Nikon D850 DSLR and Nikon 105mm Micro lens (newer version seen here). When shooting bugs with a macro lens, you not only need to deal with the challenging nature of photographing small, moving subjects, but shooting at close distances means having a very narrow depth of field as well.
To increase your odds of success, you want to find an area with lots of insects. Once you've found an area, which shouldn't prove very challenging during the summer, you want to zero in on certain flowers or plants where bugs are frequenting. If you are shooting in bright light, you also want to ensure that you position yourself such that your shadow won't be in the frame or startle a potential subject. Insects are often quite wary of vibrations and noises, so patience is the name of the game. For additional technical tips and more ideas for capturing nice macro insect shots, watch the full video below.