Needed: cheap and cheerful macro lens

It’s three and a half weeks until my photo projects are due in, and I’m currently flailing in PrePanic, hoping to avoid a full-on FreakOut. My abstract photos aren’t going well. I wanted to do camera-tossing, but the results weren’t all that great. There’s literally one good shot, with another that’s ok, and I really need 3 excellent / 5 not-bad. If I want to progress I need to throw the camera higher, so it can spin more during exposure, on scenes other than my computer monitor. But with only 3.5 weeks, slide film being expensive to buy/develop and slow to process, plus the possibility of wrecking my film camera, I can’t justify continuing with that one. I took way too long to decide this, hence today’s flailing.

So this afternoon I set up an idea I had last night. Here’s how it turned out on digital, and I haven’t processed the results beyond converting them from RAW. In theory, the developed slide film should look the same:

Abstract test shot 2 (unprocessed) Abstract test shot 1 (unprocessed)

I was really happy with this. It’s basically a straw in a cup of lemonade, backlit by a coloured flash. This was perfect. Pretty, detailed and definitely abstract, I could easily come up with a few variations. So I switched to my film camera.


None of my film lenses will focus close enough. If I back off I get un-abstract-background in the frame, and obviously slide film can’t be cropped in post-production. Even my cheap-and-cheerful 300mm zoom, once I was standing across the room, couldn’t handle it. My digital lens can presumably focus on objects closer to the lens because of some smaller-frame-optics thing I haven’t figured out yet. Dammit! It’s so frustrating to have the setup in place and be able to get good results, yet not on the medium required.

</damian>damned old technology. Who uses slide film anyway? What’s the point? Grumble grumble.<damian>

I need a macro lens, or maybe some extension tubes…It’d be cheapest to hire the former, I think. The university may be able to give me one, but that’ll take some time. Hmmm. Shall figure something out.