Macro macro man

A couple of months ago an amazingly kind friend donated me a macro lens. It has made me happy.

Macro lenses focus at extremely short distances, and generally allow 1:1 magnification, meaning an object can be the same size on the film/CCD as it is in real life. To demonstrate how excellent this is, here is a regular-lens photo of my new chum, Colonel Frank:

Colonel Frank

Colonel Frank has taken up residence in my bathroom, and is the reason my portable radio is now misnamed. Still, he is my friend. And as with all my friends, I wanted a decent picture of him. Unfortunately Colonel Frank is pretty tiny – he’s, what, 2mm across? – so I broke out the macro lens:

Macro Spider

Hopefully you’ll agree that’s a much better shot of him. I’m quite pleased with it.

The challenge with macro lenses is the tiny depth-of-field: as you’re so close to an object, even tiny movements are a large percentage of the distance, so it’s very difficult to keep objects in focus without a tripod (or whatever). In this case the problem was compounded by the web wavering in the heat from a radiator, and I was very lucky to get this hand-held shot. Even so, if you look at the full-size version you’ll see that Colonel Frank’s back leg (you can see the hairs!) is in focus while his near-side legs are not. That’s pretty amazing.

In short: macro lenses are awesome. I like. While my friend is quite possibly sick of my saying this, I must once again thank him for the very kind gift.