Female copepod with eggs

Images made through a microscope. All subject types.

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Olympusman
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Female copepod with eggs

Post by Olympusman »

Image

The ponds here have finally thawed out. I'm pretty happy with this image from yesterday afternoon and I'd like to offer some notes on the process involved.
The first step was to get the specimen drunk to immobilize her. For one drop of pond water I add one drop of 10% grain alcohol resulting in 5% alcohol pond water. This did not kill the specimen since I could the inner organs still working, but it also did not cause the speciment to contract its extremities.
The next step was the capture. While I could get the entire copepod in the field with a 4X objective, I wasn't getting the detail I desired, so I used a 10x objective and shot three sets of image stacks of the head (58 shots), mide-section (50 shots) and gills (27 shots). To get around any movement caused by organisms swimming pst, I shot the focus stacks by using the sequntial drive mode in my DSLR and holding down the remote button while turning the fine focus dial through the depth of the stack.
I then stitched the three stacks together using Microsoft Image Composite Editor.
The last step was to clean up the dirt and diatoms in Photoshop using a Graphire Wacom tablet and various brush tools (clone, airbrush, burn and dodge).
The result was a pretty detailed image that yielded an acceptable 18.5 by 9 inch print.
Michael Reese Much FRMS EMS Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA

Sumguy01
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Post by Sumguy01 »

:smt038 :smt041 Nice.
Thanks for sharing.

carlos.uruguay
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Post by carlos.uruguay »

Interesting. Although I confess that the more I see the micromundo
more I think that there are an unknown Life and more it me hurts to kill them.
That is why I never think about dead samples
You have said that the specimen not died
I wish that we learn to look at without killing, knowing that we observe life
And that the human being is not more important than these small beings
(Small "works of art" for us, but it brings death to observe them)
Regards
carlos
Pd. for that reason I never commented post of dead beings

Marci Hess
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Post by Marci Hess »

Very nice photo! Thanks for sharing it and the process. I'm interested in your process because I like shooting aquatics and have struggled with getting them to hold still. I'm curious how long the drunk affect lasts? Do you take your camera into the field to take the shot? If so, would you be willing to post a photo of your set up?

Thanks!
Marci

rjlittlefield
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Post by rjlittlefield »

Michael, this looks great! Any chance of showing us a crop that illustrates just how much detail is in the full image?

Since carlos has raised the topic of live subjects, I will point out once again that the issues involved are quite a bit more complicated and less clear than they might seem at first glance. People who are interested in reading about them can find a discussion at http://www.photomacrography.net/forum/v ... 7818#47818 and in the surrounding thread. Feelings about such things tend to be strongly held and not subject to rationale discussion, so in general the topic is off limits for debate and certainly for proselytizing at photomacrography.net. There are other forums that are more suitable for that.

Best regards,
--Rik

carlos.uruguay
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Post by carlos.uruguay »

I am sorry Rik.
I did not want to do any "proselytism".
By no means!
Perhaps to philosophize.
I am sorry if I broke some norm of the forum
Regards
carlos

Olympusman
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Female copedpod with eggs crop

Post by Olympusman »

Image
Michael Reese Much FRMS EMS Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA

rjlittlefield
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Post by rjlittlefield »

Excellent! I think you were being modest in describing this as an "acceptable" 18.5 by 9 inch print.

--Rik

Olympusman
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Copepod

Post by Olympusman »

Thanks, Rik. My wife asked me how big this critter was and I put a dot on a piece of paper with a fine point pen.
Michael Reese Much FRMS EMS Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA

Jean-marc
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Post by Jean-marc »

Very good pics,

JM

Olympusman
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Microscope setup

Post by Olympusman »

Marci,
The drunk eventually leads to deat. I have tried a number of recommended narcotizing agents (magnesium sulfate, cupric acetate and glutaraldehyde) but these either take forever or traumatize the specimen. The alcohol comes on more slowly so that legs and antennae don't immediately contract.
No, I don't work in the field. I go out and do pond dips from various sites and keep a row of jars on the windowsill.
Here is my microscope lab:
Image
From right to left:
A Swift M-3300D trinocular microscope with an unattached Olympus E-420 suspended on a stand fabricated from an Omega D Series enlarger column. I can alternate between Olympus OM-Series 28mm and 50mm relay lenses depending on how wide a field I want.
Centrifuge.
Omano trinocular set up for cross-polarization with an Olympus E-330 mounted on the photo tube. Both DSLRs can be computer controlled using Olympus Studio 2 software for control and capture. However, I do all of my stacking on the Swift and stack with my right hand on the fine focus knob on the scope and my left hand holding a USB remote. I usually operate the E-330 with RM-1 wireless infrared remote.
Phase contrast microscope with an Olympus E-P1 on a stand fabricated from a Zeiss macrophotography stand.
On the far right you will see a state-of-the-art toilet paper holder for slide cleaning.
Michael Reese Much FRMS EMS Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA

Marci Hess
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Post by Marci Hess »

WOW! This is quite the set up. Thanks for the photo and the explanation!! I'd like to shoot in the field but struggle with a good, stable set up. I'm going out again today to try again. These aquatics are a bit tricky as they are always moving!!

But you've piqued another curiosity....I have a trinocular stereo zoom Omano and struggle to get any quality photos with my Canon T5i. I've decided it must be something I'm doing as you're the 2nd person who is getting good photos with an Omano. I'm shooting 1-5mm bugs or smaller; the other person is shooting much larger bugs. You are shooting the smaller size, right? I'm not even sure of the right question to ask...other than...how are you doing this?

Marci

Olympusman
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Stereo scopes

Post by Olympusman »

You will find that many of us on this forum have been frustrated trying to get decent images through stereo microscopes -- especially through the photo tube. I have an Amscope (Omano) stereo scope and the best images I have ever goten have been through one of the eyepieces using a compact camera. I have completely given up trying to shoot on this scope with a DSLR. I ran some more tests the other day with a DSLR -- no luck.
The trick with a compact camera is to have a front lens element smaller or the same size as the eyepiece pupil. Right now I have a compact Olympus C-7000 mounted with a digiscoping adapter on the stereo scope in my office and it is adequate (I also have an Amscope metallurgical scope in my office).
Michael Reese Much FRMS EMS Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA

Marci Hess
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Post by Marci Hess »

I'm fairly new to the forum so haven't read the frustrations. Although I'm sorry there are so many, I'm glad to hear that it's a function of the scope and not something I can't figure out!! Thanks for all you help and for sharing your experiences!!

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