From My Garden – Day 41 – Rose Bud

From My Garden – Day 41 – Rose Bud

I love my roses and this plant has got a new bud, follow the adventures of my rose here.



From My Garden – Day 40 – Succulents

From My Garden – Day 40 – Succulents

Although we live in a dry area there are a few succulents growing on a few cut down trees.


From My Garden – Day 37 – Red

From My Garden – Day 37 – Red

As I don´t know the names of the majority of the flowers in my garden I am calling them colours, heheday-37

From My Garden – Day 36 – Fig

From My Garden – Day 36 – Fig

We have one solitary fig in the garden and although it is not an ideal environment for it we have high hopes. day-36


From My Garden – Day 32 – Grasshopper

From My Garden –  Day 32 – Grasshopper

This little grasshopper was relaxing in the sun on a stone, he has great patience and let me get really close up with the camera before hopping away. day-32



From My Garden – Day 31 – Alfalfa

Day 31 Alfalfa

Alfalfa is very popular in Ecuador as feed for the cows so there is loads of it.



From My Garden – Day 28 – Strawberry Flower

Day 28 – Strawberry Flower
Our strawberry plants are a little sad and sorry for themselves, they don´t die but they don´t prosper either. Hopefully this is a good sign.



From My Garden – Day 26 – Capulí

Day 26 Capulí

A short while ago I posted a photo of a capuli flower, this is the fruit that the tree produces, and it changes colour over time to black. They are out early this year as the rains came early.

#macro #inmygarden #frommygarden #coophshoutout #visualsoflife #visualsofearth #my_365 #capuli


From My Garden – Day 23 – Purple

Day 23 – I took a photo of this flower a while back, there were three buds, click on this link to see the photo. Here we have the next stage, the petals are coming out of the bud. This is the closest bud from the previous photo.


From My Garden – Day 22 – Just a cute little flower

Day 22 Just a cute little flower.

We have some of these flowers out front, they are very cute and make great macros. They are some of my favourite flowers that we have.

#inmygarden #frommygarden #gardener #mygarden #naturelovers #growsomethinggreen #landscape #garden #flowers #nature #flower #plants #organic #green #gardens #plant


From My Garden – Day 16 – Seeds

Day 16


These are possibly the most annoying seeds ever, they stick to everything, including the dogs, they are ugly plants, skeleton like and we have them all over, they grow so quickly we have trouble controlling them.

#macro #inmygarden #frommygarden #photooftheday  #coophshoutout #visualsoflife #visualsofearth #my_365 #365 #seeds #justgoshoot


From My Garden – Day 14 – Detail of a Tocte

Day 14

Detail of a Tocte

These trees are similar to walnuts but local to South America, we have two of them bu they are still very small.

#macro #inmygarden #frommygarden #photooftheday #trees #tocte #coophshoutout #visualsoflife #visualsofearth #my_365 #justgoshoot






From My Garden – Day 11 – Bud 3

Day 11

Have you been following the progress with the unidentified bud? The first of the flowers came out today, so cool, there are still more of the buds to flower so over the next few days there will be more updates.

Nikon D7100 toina macro lens 100mm,  1/3200, f/13,  ISO 1000.

#macro #flowers #inmygarden #frommygarden  #365


Blossom – Flor


Different types of lenses

Different types of lenses

Prime, zoom, tilt and shift, standard, close, up, macro, fisheye, kit lenses, fast lenses,  lens babies, fixed, wide angle, telephoto, I am sure you have heard all about them, but you may not understand the lingo.

A prime lens has a fixed focal length, to for example there is no zoom, you need to use for feet to move yourself closer or further away to achieve the desired composition, the advantages of these lenses is that they are very affordable, are fast, and as they have less glass than a zoom, give excellent quality photo.  50mm, 35mm, 85mm, 200mm are prime lenses.

Zoom lens is the type of lens that has a variety of focal lengths. They range from 55-200mm, 70-300mm, and of course there are different focal lengths.  They are excellent for those you require more distance between the camera and their subject, for example for animal/wildlife photography,, some zoom lens are excellent for portrait photography. You have a variety of different focal lengths without moving yourself.

Tilt and shift lens: Architectural photographers use tilt-shift lenses to eliminate the perspective distortions that sometimes give buildings the appearance of falling over. Aerial photographers use them to make large cities look like toy models. Art and portrait photographers use them to control exactly where the focus falls. They are expensive for the majority of us common people.

Standard lens: this is usually referred as a 50mm lens, although this term is not as widely used as before, see prime lens (above) for further explanation.

Close up lens: Close-up lenses are special lenses that screw onto the front of your lens like an ordinary camera lens filter. They’re basically just a sophisticated magnifying glass that’s placed between your lens and the subject. It’s for this reason that they’re also often called “close-up filters.”

Macro Lens: this is a dedicated lens to photograph 1:1 ratio. They produce images that are life sized, you will find some zoom lenses have a “macro “ setting but these are not true 1:1 magnification. Used for bugs, flowers and other small objects.

Fisheye. Where the lens does not attempt to draw the light in a rectilinear fashion, but rather a curved one. It has a high amount of distortion, but also brings in a larger field of view than a rectilinear lens with the same focal length. You might find the camera will give you an option to convert a photo and create a pseudo fisheye photo.

Kit lenses: Is generally a lens included with a body of a camera, a starter lens. It is generally an inexpensive lens priced at the lowest end of the manufacturer’s range so as to not add much to a camera kit’s price. Most kit lenses that will suit the average amateur photographer but if you are interested in selling or improving your photography a better lens will be required.

Fast lenses: these lenses have wider apertures, for example a 55-200mm f/2.8. The prime lenses, mentioned above are fast lenses, some of them with apertures of f/1.4.

Lens babies:a simple lens with a bellows or ball and socket mechanism for use in special-effect photography. The lenses are popular with photographers for the creative possibilities of the selective focus and bokeh effects.

Fixed: see prime lenses above.

Wide angle: They allow photos with a very wide perspective, useful for landscapes

Telephoto lenses: see zoom, above

ultrawide (~10-20mm)
wide angle (~17-35mm)
normal or standard (~30-50mm, depending on crop factor of sensor)
telephoto (~70-300mm)
supertelephoto (~>300mm).

Macro Photography on the Cheap

All lenses have a limit on how close they can focus. This is because as objects move closer to the lens, the focal point moves further back, eventually beyond the plane of the film or sensor. An obvious way around this problem is to move the lens further away from the camera. That’s what macro extension tubes do.

For those who cannot afford a dedicated macro lens there are other options, just as good, but that require a little patience, for macro photography.

Extension Tubes or a Reverse lens ring.

The macro extension tubes that I use are very cheap and simple. As you can see from the second photo, it comes in five sections. At each end is a bayonet ring for mounting the tube to the lens and camera body (in this case Nikon). In between those any combination of three threaded tubes of varying length can be used to change the extension by varying degrees. That’s all there is to these tubes, nothing more.

Pros and cons

Here’s the costs/benefits of tubes like mine:

-You need to manual focus, my moving the lens/camera closer or nearer to the object, the same result is achieved by moving the object you are taking a photo of.

-You have no auto control on the camera, you need to put it in Manual to be able to take any photos. You have no aperture on some lenses, the 50mm on the other hand is great for macros as it allows you to change the aperture manually on the lens.

-You could overtighten the threads on the extension tubes making them difficult to unscrew.

-You need to be careful with the lens on a tripod as the centre of gravity changes putting greater stress on the cameras body´s lens mount.

-You need plenty of light. As the objects are closer to the lens, the light is blocked by the lens, so you need a side, overhead, backlighting source of light. Not a problem in a studio of course.

-As there is no data connection between the camera and the lens so the EXIF data will not be complete.


-Photographic opportunities otherwise unavailable (without very expensive specialist lenses) are possible.

-Economical.  I got mine from

– They have them for various makes of camera. There are others that cost more. Kenko for example.

-A light and compact addition to your gear. I carry mine with me everywhere.

-Useful even with telephoto lenses. A long lens is great for making things bigger, but they can’t focus very close at all. An extension tube can allow you to enlarge with the telephoto but still maintain a good working distance.

-Mechanically simple. There’s not much that can go wrong with these.

-They’ll get you thinking about new ways to take photos. Extension tubes make your lenses a whole lot more flexible, and don’t just have to be for photos of insects or flowers.

A macro reverse ring.

You need to make sure to buy one the correct size for your lens. I have two one for 67mm and one for 52mm.

The reverse ring focuses closer than the extension tubes. And they work like this:

Take the lens off the camera, place the reverse ring onto the camera in the same way as you would attach a lens, turn the lens around, back to front and attach to the reverse ring. You attach the side that the filter goes.

The strengths and weaknesses match above, but with the lens in the reverse position you need to take care of the electronics of the lens against damage.

A tripod is highly recommended.

The extensions tubes and reverse ring have opened up a whole new world for my photography without the expensive of a dedicated macro lens. They are great fun.

Macro Photography by Tracie Kaska (Guest post)

Macro Photography – What Is It?

What is macro photography? It is close-up photography that produces a digital or film image that is life size or larger than life. With this type of photography you can see texture and detail that the human eye cannot easily detect.

I have been fascinated by this type of photography for as long as I’ve had a camera, so you can imagine my excitement when I recently got my first macro lens. When I first attached it to my camera I expected to go out immediately and take amazing pictures that would wow anyone who saw them. Well, guess what? Macro photography is not as easy as it looks. Macro lenses have a very shallow depth of field, so even the slightest movement can completely throw your focus off. Trust me—I have hundreds of blurry photos to prove it!

So what can you do to improve your chances of getting a decent shot? Here are a few tips that I have found helpful:

1)  If you have one, use a tripod! (I had a choice between getting a tripod or a macro lens and I opted for the lens, not realizing just how important a tripod would be to this kind of photography).

2)  If you don’t have one, all is not lost. Learn to rest your lens in your hand and rest your elbow on a nearby object. Hold your lens firmly, but don’t grip it too hard—your camera will feel the vibrations your tightened muscles make even if you can’t feel it yourself.

3)  Hold your breath. Breathe in, get your focus, and click. There is a word of warning in using this technique, however. If you take to many shots in a row, holding your breath every time, you will make yourself very lightheaded. Take a moment to breathe normally between shots.

4)  Since macro lenses have such a shallow depth-of-field you can increase your shutter speed and still have a nicely blurred background. If the light is good enough, I like to use 1/100th of a second or faster.

5)  Don’t get overly close to your subject. Getting too close to your subject will often cause the foreground to blur. In a landscape photograph this can be fine, even desired, but when you are doing close-ups, your foreground is generally part of the subject you are trying to capture. If you want a tighter shot, it is better to do a little cropping in your photo editing program that to another photo to clutter your recycle bin.

6)  And lastly, if your subject is flat enough and you want the whole thing in focus, make sure your lens is parallel to your subject.

There is much more to mastering the art of macro photography, but these tips are some that I’ve picked up through trial and error. The very best advice I can give is: Practice! Get your camera out every day and just keep snapping. Before you know it, you’ll have a portfolio you’ll be excited to share with others.

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