Macro Photography Benefits

Posted: November 30, 2015 in Uncategorized
After a few years photography landscapes, I found my calling, passion, and career as a macro photographer. It wasn’t my intentions to shoot macro as my interest in my new hobby in the beginning was to be a landscape photographer. I had studied all the great landscape images that were printed on the pages of “Outdoor Photographer” and decided that was what I wanted to shoot. With my limited time and budget to travel to the national parks where the best landscapes were, and only two weeks a year of vacation, it didn’t satisfy my desire and left me with fifty weeks of mundane landscape opportunities in the northern suburbs of Detroit. I wanted to get outdoors and shoot something, so I decided to look into macro, which gave me more subject matter though out the year during the times I wasn’t able to travel. It didn’t take long before I realized how much fun macro was with all the great artwork that Mother Nature provided to photograph. I began to realize all of the benefits of being a macro photographer, and have since dedicated all of my time to macro, and no longer shoot landscapes.
You don’t have to travel far as macro subjects are everywhere. You can find it at the local parks, in your own yard, and even shoot inside your home. I have three great parks within twenty minutes of my home, and probably seventy percent of my best images are photographed in those parks. I also have a few of my best selling images that were shot in my backyard. Most people have flower gardens in their yard, so they can walk outside their home and shoot. This close convenience saves on the high cost of fuel and wear and tear on our vehicles, and saves on time as we can shoot when we just have an hour or two available. In the winter here in Michigan I do most of my shooting indoors, so I buy flower from the local florist, go online to websites that sell feathers, mounted butterflies, sea shells, slab agates, which all can be arranged into artistic compositions.
You can shoot with just one lens.  You don’t need a whole arsenal of lenses for macro photography, I got by with one lens for seven years before I added on to my stable of lenses. I shot for those first seven years using a macro lens in the 180mm range. If you are starting out as a macro photographer and limited on funds, a mid range focal length lens like the Tamron 90mm will work great for all purposes. If you plan to shoot live subjects such as butterflies, dragonflies, and other small critters that will flee as you approach to close, go with the longer focal length lens like Tamron’s 180mm. If you like to handhold your camera, try the light and fast shooting Tamron 60mm macro lens. For macro photography plan on shooting the majority of your shots with your camera mounted on a good study tripod and ballhead.
Subject matter changes every month. With the four seasons, we have an ever-changing environment month by month and sometimes day by day. I can revisit the same areas every couple weeks and find new subjects. It’s a constant cycle evolving from life to death. Depending on where you live, your seasons may vary and the environment may be totally different from the rest of the country. Learn about the subjects and life cycles of the plants and critters in your area, and make sure you are in the field when subjects come into season.
Shoot any time of day.  Landscape and wildlife photographers have limited control over lighting and tend to shoot early morning and late evening which offers the best light. Because of the small subjects macro photographers work with, we have the ability to control our light by using diffusers and reflectors, so we can shoot any time of the day. I carry a 12” diffuser which I use to control harsh overhead light or sunlight from hitting my subjects, and a 12” silver/gold reflector for bouncing light into shaded areas of a subject.
More Creativity.  One of the challenges as a macro photographer is working with depth of field. Because we are shooting very close to our subjects, the depth of field is very shallow causing lots of out of focus areas in our photos. The closer we get to the subject, the less that will be in focus. We can use this shallow depth of field to our advantage in creating artistic compositions. If you like soft focus dream like images, shoot in the lower f/stop range, and use this shallow depth of field to produce some beautiful artwork. If you have a subject that may have some interesting lines or textures that you may what to show off, you can set your f/stop in the highest numbers and bring everything into focus. So we have the ability to get everything in focus and also use the shallow depth of field to be more creative.
Your own personal art. Your own personal art is one of my favorite benefits. Every image that you view on my website is an original. They are subjects that were present for only a brief moment in time, until the environment erased them forever. None of the images that I have can be reproduced again because the subjects do not exists anymore. Mountains, rivers, lakes, are all there day after day and can be photographed over and over by many, many photographers, but my subjects have been eliminated by Mother Nature and are images that I can call my own originals.
Each year more and more nature photographers discover the benefits of macro.  Take some time and explore all the local parks and your own backyard and enjoy the fun of macro photography.


Macro Workshops click here
”Macro Online Course click here
”Creating Art With Macro E-Book click here
Macro Photo Conference click here
You can buy my images from a select group at
To save 15% on Topaz products click here
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Share through social media, click links at bottom of this article.
I will be presenting a free webinar through NPEG (National Photography Enthusiasts Group).
Open to the public, but only 100 spots so don’t wait long to sign up.
The Reality of Making Money as a Nature Photographer.
November 30th.
Check it out here.

Eliminate the Clutter

Posted: November 29, 2015 in Uncategorized


One of my favorite places to photograph this time of year is at a small pond lined with cottonwood trees. As the fall colored leaves land on the pond, it produces some nice opportunities for images. So as I was shooting yesterday I thought it was a good time to explain my process for finding the right composition to shoot in all the clutter. I use my 18-270 Tamron lens so I can reach out farther into the pond.
Here is an image of what I am dealing with when I say lots of clutter.


Here is an image that doesn’t work well because the subjects are small, and there is to much going on and your eye has a tough time finding some place to land. It’s like having a cluttered background on a flower shot and you lose the flower in the clutter.

Here’s another example of to much chaos and my eyes are wandering all over looking for something that stands out and grabs my attention.


I shot this image in this same spot but a few years ago. Here is a great example of finding a good place for your eye to land. The center leaf with the little heart shape of water acts as the main subject in the frame that catches your attention, and then the leaves around the outside frame the main subject. In the last two images there was nothing that stood out and grabbed your attention.


Here are some examples, and although they are not as interesting as the one above, I’ve tried to isolate just a few larger subjects that stand out.

Macro Workshops click here
”Macro Online Course click here
”Creating Art With Macro E-Book click here
Macro Photo Conference click here
You can buy my images from a select group at
To save 15% on Topaz products click here
Like my Facebook Page
Share through social media, click links at bottom of this article.


Sale at Hunt’s Photo from Andrea

Posted: November 28, 2015 in Uncategorized
Hi Mike,

We have some amazing Tamron lens specials to share with you and your
followers. Please feel free to share this great news anywhere and
everywhere you can.

Thru Monday 12/7
Tamron 16-300mm lens is only $499 after mail-in rebates! (originally
Tamron 150-600mm lens is only $949 after mail-in rebates! (originally

**Ask about the filter Sale too**
40% off your choice of Promaster filters when you purchase either of
these lenses.

As always there is no charge for Shipping.
No Tax (except MA, ME & RI)

Lens mounts available in Nikon, Sony, and Canon. Lowest prices of the
holiday season! Hurry-offer ends soon.
Call Andrea at 781-662-8822. If I’m not available, please leave a
message and I’ll return your call as soon as possible.

I just spoke with Gary and he wanted me to tell you that we have even
more savings for your followers regarding the Tamron special. Just make
sure they ask for me when they call and I’ll be more than glad to fill
them in on the details. Thanks again!

_Thank you,_
Andrea Cutts

Here is a quote from Pop Photo.
“The advent of digital cameras brought on a new era in photography and it’s a prolific one. The number of photos we take each year has sky rocketed. In fact, in a recent presentation by Yahoo!, it was claimed that as many as 880 BILLION photos will be taken in 2014 if we continue on the current trend. That’s a lot.”
880 Billion photos taken, wow, is it any wonder why we have a hard time selling our photos. Or if we are able to sell, it’s less then what we may have sold in the past.
Everyone has a camera or a camera phone, and with digital the ability to take better quality pictures has been possible with the easy to use equipment, and the amazing tools for processing the images.
With so many people into photography now trying to sell their images through a websites, galleries, art shows, on the walls of coffee houses, restaurants, banks, hospitals, and these are just some of the places we see people trying to sell their photos. Some use online sites, like Fine Art America, Smugmug, Etsy, and other sites that provide a place to display and sell your images.
I’ve been in the business of selling my images in many of these ways over the last nine years, and have gotten away from selling my photos as it takes a lot of effort for the little bit of sales.
I’ve always said that if you want to sell volumes of your photos, it happens best in the art show business. But my last two years that I attended art shows I had seen a big drop in sales, and dropped out because the efforts were not worth the sales I was making. Photographers in that business I know still work at it and get by, but it’s a tough business these days.
Some say it’s the economy, but I think some of it is that everyone feels they can take their own photos to hang on their walls.
It’s also supply and demand, to much supply being offered and lower demand to purchase.
In the art show business it has always been that jewelry had the most applicants applying to each art show. Photography now draws about the same applicants as jewelry, and the shows offer less spaces for photography than jewelry, so harder to get into the shows with more competition.
Selling online through a website has been a big bust. In the first few years on my website I had a cart system to sell my images and after a few years of basically no sales, I disabled the cart system, and just let people know if they wanted to buy, contact me. This year I have not sold one  photo from my website.
You hear photographers saying to hang your photos on the walls of coffee houses, restaurants, banks, hospitals, offices, in hopes of making sales. I have tried all these and the sales were pretty non existences. You might get lucky and sell a couple, but you’re not going to make big money this way.
On a daily basis someone asks me about getting into the business of selling their photos, and I tell them of my experiences and say not to get your hopes to high.
Sometimes people will think that they are not good photographers because they are not selling, and that is just not the case, as very few people I know that are great photographers are making much selling their photos.
As a pro photographer if selling my images was doing well, I would still be into it.
If you sell stock photography you have also seen your sales drastically reduced due to the lower cost micro stock sites. And why has the prices been reduced to such low costs, because everyone has a camera and can produce quality images and can easily upload them to these stock sites, and they are willing to sell at a lower cost. So as photography has become easier to do, and easier to get the images out there, the supply of images has gone way up and the prices going downward, making it harder to justify the time for the return.
Now of course as in all things in life there are exception to the rule, and I’m sure there are still a few photographers doing well selling their photos or selling in the stock photography business, but they are rare in comparison to the ones that tried and failed.
Good luck if you attempt it, but as I said, don’t get your hopes to high. Be realistic.


Macro Workshops click here
”Macro Online Course click here
”Creating Art With Macro E-Book click here
Macro Photo Conference click here
You can buy my images from a select group at
To save 15% on Topaz products click here
Like my Facebook Page
Share through social media, click links at bottom of this article.

Tamron Black Friday Sale

Posted: November 27, 2015 in Uncategorized
Black Friday Cyber Monday Rebate


Rebates valid Nov. 1 – Dec 31, 2015

Mail-In Rebate on 16-300 Di II VC PZD


Mail-In Rebate on 18-270 Di II VC PZD


Mail-In Rebate on 28-300 Di VC PZD


Mail-In Rebate on SP 70-300 Di VC USD


Mail-In Rebate on SP 24-70 F/2.8 Di VC USD


Mail-In Rebate on SP 70-200 F/2.8 Di VC USD


Mail-In Rebate on SP 150-600 Di VC USD


Mail-In Rebate on SP 90 F/2.8 Di VC USD Macro

*Bonus $50 mail-in rebates on these two select lenses are valid from 11/27/15~12/7/15 only and are good on top of regular mail-in rebates. Regular mail-in rebates ($80 on 16-300mm and $70 on 150-600mm) are valid thru 12/31/15.

Before and After

Posted: November 27, 2015 in Uncategorized


Bottles shot at a museum
The Before



The After
I ran this one through Topaz’s “Simplify4” and used the “Color Sketch 3” filter. Did a little crop.
To save 15% on Topaz products click here


Macro Workshops click here
”Macro Online Course click here
”Creating Art With Macro E-Book click here
Macro Photo Conference click here
You can buy my images from a select group at
To save 15% on Topaz products click here
Like my Facebook Page

Share through social media, click links at bottom of this article.