I (Erica) am the photographer at Nature Visions' Boutique, and love nature photography. In particular, I love discovering the tiny world all around us. Chasing bugs has become a passion! Pretty good, since I’ve spent most of my life terrified of spiders - well, some spiders still have the power to make me jump.
However, I discovered that meeting a Jumping Spider up close and personal is a treat! They are so much fun, and so interesting through a macro lens. Did you know they even have their own group of over 6,000 admirers on Facebook? If you’re a fan, too, you can join here https://www.facebook.com/JumpingSpiderSalticidae
Macro photography affords a new appreciation of so many things. From insects to plant life, and beyond. I even use my macro lens for some of my mom Nancy’s artwork now.
Long before I was fortunate enough to get a macro lens, I was using my regular lenses for insect photography. You can still achieve pretty good detail with most lenses. Even iPhones and the like offer amazing macro opportunities nowadays. These days, though, I use a 100mm f/2.8 Canon Lens for my macro photos.
I usually just do things the way I find they work for me. I hand hold my camera, and my lenses don’t have IS (Image Stabilization). I recommend a shutter speed of at least 500, but if you want to capture bee’s wings, you’ll need to go 1000+ (at least in my experience). Your ISO is going to depend on your lighting, and how well your camera handles faster shutter speeds / how much noise it produces at a higher ISO.
My best advice when photographing insects is to take as many photos as you can while the insect is around you. Most bugs are in constant motion, and even when you think you’ve nailed the shot, you can wind up with blur. Of course, Image Stabilization might help with that, but still - keep shooting! You may have a butterfly that’s opening and closing its wings over and over, and just the right snap will capture them open in all their glory.
I don’t chill, capture or move bugs. With the exception of the Jumping Spider who was on our car, I chase them around where I see them. Heck, I need the exercise! Plus, they have their own little worlds that they live in, and I don’t want to disrupt that.
You may think, “Well, it’s just a bug.” Start taking photos, and when you see the pictures enlarged on your screen, you’ll gain a new appreciation for all that goes into the making of a bug:-)