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Milkweed Leaf Beetle foot side profile stack
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abpho



Joined: 17 Aug 2011
Posts: 1423
Location: Earth

PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2011 8:36 pm    Post subject: Milkweed Leaf Beetle foot side profile stack Reply with quote

97 image stack with my new objective lens.


UPDATE: Crops deleted to make room on my flickr account. I attached 800x800 pixel crops at the end of this post. Thanks.

There comes a point where one must separate oneself from the box and re-evalute the situation. I have come to the realization that this is absolutely NUTS, CRAZY, INSANE, ASTOUNDING, AMAZING, STUPID™. I am loving it. I am having so much fun with this type of photography. Booyah!

All insects should run and hide. Preferably under 10 meters of concrete.

SHOT INFO:
I ran the stack through two different stacking algorithms. These were then combined in photoshop. There was some additional cleaning up done in the background. The subject was pretty clean and remains untouched 99% of what you see. The vignetting is natural and was not added by me.

FIY:
This was my first pass. I actually ran this stack a second time, grabbing 168 images. I have not processed that lot yet. For now I will admire this image.





Last edited by abpho on Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:43 pm; edited 3 times in total
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Craig Gerard



Joined: 01 May 2010
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Location: Australia

PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2011 9:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Outstanding!

Lighting, composition, detail, background and the vignette = superb!

That first one is a real 'kicker' Smile

Quote:
I ran the stack through two different stacking algorithms. These were then combined in photoshop.

Could you elaborate further regarding the "two stacking algorithms" and possibly provide a quick 'snap' of your setup?


Craig
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yeatzee



Joined: 29 Jan 2011
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2011 9:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I need an objective..... stat. how much for yours?
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abpho



Joined: 17 Aug 2011
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2011 9:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Craig Gerard wrote:
Could you elaborate further regarding the "two stacking algorithms" and possibly provide a quick 'snap' of your setup?
Thanks Craig. I used both stacking methods in Zerene. Pyramid maximum contrast algorithm, and depth map algorithm.

Here is the setup.


In the above picture of the foot I used a bright yellow piece of foam. By moving it further away from the flash I can change it's colour (brightness). I can get that yellow to come out brown.
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rjlittlefield
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Joined: 01 Aug 2006
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Location: Richland, Washington State, USA

PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2011 9:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Perfectly done! That lighting is deceptively "simple". You've done just the right placement of that one strobe to get great modeling and surface texture without blowing anything out or getting excessively dark shadows. Did you do anything explicit for fill illumination, or is that just random reflections from the environment?

--Rik
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abpho



Joined: 17 Aug 2011
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2011 10:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rjlittlefield wrote:
Perfectly done! That lighting is deceptively "simple". You've done just the right placement of that one strobe to get great modeling and surface texture without blowing anything out or getting excessively dark shadows. Did you do anything explicit for fill illumination, or is that just random reflections from the environment?
Thank you sir. I am amazed what one flash gun can do. The example setup shot above does not show my diffuser. I use white dixie cups. The bottom is cut out to allow the lens to protrude into the cup. Then I cut a slot down the side to allow my subject stand to enter the diffuser. The flash is typically almost touching the diffuser and shooting straight down. The flash is set to manual. I try to keep the flash output level to 1/8 or fast. Sometimes I have to use 1/4 power since I will not set my ISO greater than 200. For some shots this does not work. In that case I reposition the flash to a different angle, or perhaps further back. In some subjects it is a fine compromise between blown highlights and shadow detail. I am not going to entertain the idea of HDR macro stacks. Very Happy The position of the background also has an effect on the lighting within the diffuser. If I place it directly against the top of the cup, I "trap" most of the light within the diffuser. I get a small colour cast from the coloured background. But that I can clean up later. I was thinking of using custom white balance settings but I have not bothered yet.

The foam sheets have served me well. However, I have another idea for a background. It is sweet. Literally. Hahaha!

I am also going to try the Jensjo lights that Ikea sells. I don't want to kill my flash just yet. Lately I am taking close to 1,000 shots in a day.
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Craig Gerard



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PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2011 11:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ab,

Thanks for the details Smile

The dixie cups and a single flash, that explains the bounced light illuminating the underside of the foot.

Quote:
In the above picture of the foot I used a bright yellow piece of foam. By moving it further away from the flash I can change it's colour (brightness). I can get that yellow to come out brown.

That is in reference to the background. I was briefly confused until I read your latest response.

Quote:
The foam sheets have served me well. However, I have another idea for a background. It is sweet. Literally. Hahaha!


Enjoy that 'sweet', I have really enjoyed this thread Surprised

I don't have any of the Ikea JANSJÖ LED lamps. They are still $29.99 in Australia. I've read there may be some variation in the output of individual lamps and long exposures are required.

A fiber optic illuminator (with internal IR filter) and a set of triple or quad branch light guides might prove more effective and economical.....can't see many options on eBay at the moment. Schott-Fostec and Volpi are two good brands. Bargains do present themselves Cool

Using a continous light source does offer additional benefits in some situations, especially when using a Canon DSLR. I'm not sure if your are aware of the EFSC (Electronic First Shutter Curtain):
http://krebsmicro.com/Canon_EFSC/index.html




Craig
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abpho



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PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2011 11:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Craig Gerard wrote:
A fiber optic illuminator (with internal IR filter) and a set of triple or quad branch light guides might prove more effective and economical.....can't see many options on eBay at the moment. Schott-Fostec and Volpi are two good brands. Bargains do present themselves Cool

Using a continous light source does offer additional benefits in some situations, especially when using a Canon DSLR. I'm not sure if your are aware of the EFSC (Electronic First Shutter Curtain)
Do tell me more about these illuminators. Perhaps some pictures. Pricing would be nice as well.

I was going to grab 4 of the Ikea lamps this weekend. If you get back to me soon enough I might save $45.

I have seem the article on EFSC but have not studied it yet.
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Craig Gerard



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 1:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ab,

The price of a good fiber optic illuminator and light guides would be considerably more than the $45.00 for 4 X Ikea JANSJÖ LED lamps.

I have seen good results with the Ikea JANSJÖ LED lamps. I mentioned the fiber optic illuminator because many members use them and such a unit is a worthwhile consideration.

It is difficult to put an exact figure on such a unit as prices are all over the place at the moment; but a rough estimate would be USD $120.00 and upwards for a used Schott-Fostec or Volpi FO illuminator. There are many types of light guides and again prices vary; but as I indicated, bargains do present themselves; but you would still be looking at somewhere around $250.00 for the illuminator and a good set of light guides (that's on a good day)

I have triple and quad branch light guides; but I also have a couple of FO ringlights and another piece designed for darkfield illumination. These were all collected over a period of time, and each one is used for various projects. They are extremely versatile and not too expensive if you keep an eye on the listings.

I'll find some links or post some images....but at the present moment I have guests for dinner.


Craig
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abpho



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 1:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Craig. I hope your guests are delicious.

CheerS!
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qanunji



Joined: 29 May 2011
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Location: Haifa, Israel

PostPosted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 8:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Superb!
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lauriek
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 12:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Really very very nice! Smile

The vignette works fine on that shot, sometimes they detract but not in this case...
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DQE



Joined: 08 Jul 2008
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 4:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Such interesting details, anatomical structures, and textures!

Excellent lighting and composition, too!
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Craig Gerard



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 6:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

abpho wrote:
Do tell me more about these illuminators. Perhaps some pictures.

Usual ouput of the units is 3200K, halogen bulb.

Here is a start.....regarding images and setups.
http://www.photomacrography.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=9243


Craig
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abpho



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 7:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That is one elegant setup. Makes mine look very sad.

Is it possible to get a micrometer on a linear stage with a resolution of 1µm? Or would I be better of getting the Stack Shot? With the stack shot a lot of the personal nature of the work is taken away. It gets too automated.
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