Andy Hawthorne

Thoughts, stories and ideas

Photos That Bug You

Having an interest in nature means insects or a bug fit the bill for subjects to photograph.

A bug, many bugs, creepy-crawlies or whatever you want to call them make tough subjects. For a start, they are small and second, the move quick. But here’s a few tips to photograph them.

I got lucky with the photo above. Butterflies must be some of the trickiest insects to capture.

They move fast and when they settle it is for the briefest moment. This one landed on a shrub not far from my home office window. But it took my 75-300 mm lens to its absolute limit.

The exposure for it was f/13 at 1/500 sec and ISO 800. I would have liked to have kept the ISO lower. But the light was flat and I needed a fast shutter speed to be sure of getting the photo.

Bug 2

This next bug flew in through my window and annoyed the hell out of me before settling back on the window. I took this one with my iPhone. My phone was the nearest camera I had and something told me my subject wasn’t going to wait around for long. I like the fact that I managed to catch the reflection in the shot, too.

bug 3

I also took this one with my iPhone. It looks enormous but I used the macro tool available in the Camera+ 2 app. It worked a treat. The flat light outside meant I could adjust the exposure to show off the translucent back-end. I like the framing in this shot, there are enough elements in the photo to keep you looking at the size of the bug.

bug 4

This one is another I caught with my iPhone. The Camera +2 app did a nice job of catching this colourful little critter. I waited for it to crawl into a position so I could use depth of field to show some of my back garden. It adds to the scaling for the photo.

bug 1

Yet another iPhone photo. It was a good thing the insect didn’t fly off. I wanted to capture the vibrant colours in the body and those translucent wings. It took care not to take the shot with the subject dead centre. To me, the photo would have lost some of it’s dynamism.

Do these photos bug you? I had fun and it became a project in it’s own right. I failed to get all the photos because I wasn’t quick enough. But the ones I did get show what you can do with a smartphone camera.

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