Violet Ground Beetle (Carabus violaceus)

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georgedingwall
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Violet Ground Beetle (Carabus violaceus)

Post by georgedingwall »

Hi there,

I found this beetle in my garden yesterday. It's a stacked image, but this time I used some moss from the garden to mock up a real scenario.



D200 with Sigma 150mm macro lens + 1.4 X teleconverter
1/250 sec @ F8 Iso 100
Frames stacked in Helicon focus
Finished in Photoshop.
Last edited by georgedingwall on Sun Mar 02, 2008 2:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
George Dingwall

Invergordon, Scotland

http://www.georgedingwall.co.uk/

rjlittlefield
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Post by rjlittlefield »

George,

This is very nice! The use of moss as a background not only gives the scene a natural look, it also protects you from halo artifacts around the edge of the subject. The lighting here is very contrasty and dramatic. It seems clear from the black blacks that you've either gotten flare under control in the shooting, or you've level-adjusted it away by postprocessing. Just personally, I would rather have some detail visible in those shadow areas. Is there any way you can pull some light around to the front? Perhaps some crumpled aluminum foil surrounding the lens (but in back of it to avoid flare) would help out here.

--Rik

beetleman
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Post by beetleman »

I agree with Rik, the moss adds a lot to the picture. They are a beautiful insect up close and personal. I love the palps and the hairy sections on the antenna. great job George :smt023
Take Nothing but Pictures--Leave Nothing but Footprints.
Doug Breda

georgedingwall
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Joined: Tue Aug 01, 2006 11:15 am
Location: Invergordon, Scotland
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Post by georgedingwall »

Hi Rik,
rjlittlefield wrote:George,

This is very nice! I would rather have some detail visible in those shadow areas. Is there any way you can pull some light around to the front? Perhaps some crumpled aluminum foil surrounding the lens (but in back of it to avoid flare) would help out here.

--Rik
Thanks for the comments.

I enjoy trying to get a "realistic" feel to an image.

I've tried your suggestion and bounced some light in through the front of the diffuser. I also re-positioned one of my lights to try to force a bit more light on the underparts.

I couldn't find another sample of moss with the nice feathery feel to it but I re-shot a sequence to see the effect of the altered lighting setup.

It's had quite effect on the head area. The underparts have also got some detail on them. I think the moss in blocking too much light to overcome the power of the lights on the upper parts of the beetle. Maybe if I had a fibre optic light I could force some light into a place like this without overexposing the rest of the image. But that's for another day - maybe a Christmas present. :D

Anyway, here's the re-shot image showing the effect of the altered lighting setup.


Bye for now.
Last edited by georgedingwall on Sun Mar 02, 2008 2:19 pm, edited 2 times in total.
George Dingwall

Invergordon, Scotland

http://www.georgedingwall.co.uk/

georgedingwall
Posts: 207
Joined: Tue Aug 01, 2006 11:15 am
Location: Invergordon, Scotland
Contact:

Post by georgedingwall »

Hi Doug,
beetleman wrote:They are a beautiful insect up close and personal. I love the palps and the hairy sections on the antenna. great job George :smt023
Thanks for the comments.

The more I photograph beetles, the more I like them. They have a magic all their own.

Bye for now.
George Dingwall

Invergordon, Scotland

http://www.georgedingwall.co.uk/

rjlittlefield
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Post by rjlittlefield »

Ooo! Much improved!! It's lost that mysterious Darth Vader look, and now it strikes me more as "What an interesting and attractive beetle!".

--Rik

beetleman
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Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 4:19 am
Location: Southern New Hampshire USA

Post by beetleman »

Yep, I like the improvment on the head area with the new lighting and the Undercarriage is much improved. Looks like he just polished his exoskeleton. :shock:
Take Nothing but Pictures--Leave Nothing but Footprints.
Doug Breda

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