Reverse Manual Lens Macros

by Laurie Madsen February. 28, 2019 561 views
Bumble Bee on Autumn Glory Blossoms

Bumble Bee on Autumn Glory Blossoms

Autumn Glory Sedum Extreme Macro

Autumn Glory Sedum Extreme Macro

Johnny Jump Up Extreme Macro

Johnny Jump Up Extreme Macro

Heidi Egerman in her Macro Romanesco Study blog

asked if anyone used reverse manual lenses to take macro pictures. I am posting these pictures to illustrate a comment I made to her about how one can achieve very high magnification using this method, but it generally gives one a VERY shallow focal plane and softly diffuses the rest of the image. I personally like the results it can achieve, especially where flowers and insects are subjects. The above images taken with my pentax asahi manual 200mm prime with a 50mm manual prime reversed in front.

Heidi, I hope this illustrates my comment for you....

Interesting stuff...

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Vivienne Albiston 2 years, 3 months ago

very interesting, tried free lensing with this?

2 years, 3 months ago Edited
Laurie Madsen Replied to Vivienne Albiston 2 years, 3 months ago

Vivienne,
I am VERY interested in hearing more about your free lens technique!
I want to make sure I understand your experiment and try it myself!
Can you elaborate?

2 years, 3 months ago Edited
Vivienne Albiston Replied to Laurie Madsen 2 years, 3 months ago

I found it works best into the sun slightly, I would focus with say my macro lens, then disconnect it and take the image. Sometimes you get crazy abstracts sometimes rubbish. Most photographers won`t do it in case dust and stuff gets into their camera...Take care.

2 years, 3 months ago Edited
Berckmans Peter 2 years, 3 months ago

Very good results. However it can not be done with every lens. It has to be completly manual .

2 years, 3 months ago Edited
Laurie Madsen Replied to Berckmans Peter 2 years, 3 months ago

Well, mostly true, I have done it with af lenses before but it's an extreme challenge!
The interesting thing about the ones above, the 200mm has a long minimal focus distance (somewhere around 6' if I remember correctly). But slap that 50mm on front and I'm practically next to the bee. That's a huge change, and also a huge challenge, as I'm rocking back and forth the bee is in constant motion, so I feel lucky to get one slice in focus!
I also wondered if this bee actually is missing an antennae or did the shallow focus just lose it? What do you think?

2 years, 3 months ago Edited
Heidi Egerman 2 years, 3 months ago

Totally. Wonderful images. I haven’t been shooting macro in awhile, but these motivate me. Thanks for taking the time to post these.

2 years, 3 months ago Edited
Laurie Madsen Replied to Heidi Egerman 2 years, 3 months ago

You're welcome Heidi,
Your posts inspire me and provoke thought, I like that.
I feel posting images to illustrate, sometimes clarifies my point (picture paints a thousand words-better than I can)
Keep up the wonderful pictures and dialogue! I'm hooked!

2 years, 3 months ago Edited
Pete 2 years, 3 months ago

This is something I have never tried. Well done.
I enjoy Macro photography and have seriously considered getting a Macro lens.

2 years, 3 months ago Edited
Laurie Madsen Replied to Pete 2 years, 3 months ago

Pete,
You will NOT regret getting a macro lens!
If you do, PLEASE get a lens capable of 1:1 and it opens up a WORLD of WONDERS!
The manual lens thing is fun but very tricky and can be a bit cumbersome too. I'm wanting to have less gadgets, so finally broke down and got a real macro lens! I'm going to have so much fun with this thing it will pay for itself in cheap entertainment!

2 years, 3 months ago Edited
Vivienne Albiston Replied to Laurie Madsen 2 years, 3 months ago

I add the tubes in front of macro lens and it makes for interesting results. Very shallow depth of field but work round it, have fun.

2 years, 3 months ago Edited
Laurie Madsen Replied to Vivienne Albiston 2 years, 3 months ago

Can you give me more details of what you mean?
Do you use a manual lens, then add tubes and a macro lens or what?
Sounds very interesting!

2 years, 3 months ago Edited
Vivienne Albiston Replied to Laurie Madsen 2 years, 3 months ago

I had extension tubes which fitted onto an adaptor to the front of my olympus. Then I would use a 50mm prime lens (not digital) onto the tubes. Or a macro lens and work round the depth of field problem. Move camera to focus it, support it on a bean bag, set timer to 2s away you go.Tomorrow I`ll find a post one of these for you. viv

2 years, 3 months ago Edited
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