Hawaii in January

posted on 2012.01.14, under insects, Macro, Uncategorized

Hawaii in January at Waimea Valley.  I was happy to find a tree covered in hoppers inside the botanical gardens.

I did have problems getting in super close with the Canon MR 14.  The front ring made 4 and 5 X, shots (with the 65mm MP-E) impossible.  Next week I am going to Dubai and Kenya and I will take the MT 24EX.  This will allow me to get in closer to my subjects.

CANON 5D, CANON 65mm MP-E Lens, CANON MR14EX Flash

Lady Bug, Rose Bud and Aphids

posted on 2011.11.18, under bugs, Canon 5D Mark II, insects, Macro

The Canon 65mm MP-E is a remarkable lens.

This is as wide as this lens shoots.  Without a flash or some additional light it would be nearly impossible to get
this photo without the ISO being 2500 to 6400.

This was captured using the Canon 5D at ISO 100, f13, 1/200 using a the canon Twin Lite MT-24EX.

Ambush Bugs in Arizona

posted on 2011.10.29, under bugs, insects, Macro, Photos

The tiny hunter.  The ambush bug was plentiful in Prescott, Arizona.  8 of these little guys could fit on a thumb nail.

Canon 5D
Canon 65mm MP-E
Canon Macro Flash MT-24ex

who is the fittest

posted on 2011.10.09, under bugs, Canon 7D, insects, Lens, Macro

We would need to decide on a criteria, a set of guidelines, a set of observable, measurable and repeatable data points, to decide what species is the fittest.

There are 10 quintillion insects on the planet earth at any given moment.  That is a “1″ with 19 zeros following.  That is 1 billion insects for every human being.

These flies were enjoying some feces (unknown animal) in the San Diego desert.

Canon 7D
Canon Macro lens 65 MP-E
Canon MT 24 EX flash

gas station bugs

posted on 2011.08.07, under Canon 5D Mark II, Canon 7D, Flash, Macro, Photos

Driving home from San Diego last night was memorable.  100 miles north of Los Angles on interstate 5, I stopped in at a gas station and found this awesome swarm of insects.  There were about 4-6 separate swarms.   The insects were harmles and were dying by the hundreds per second.  I don’t know why they were dying, I assume it was the end of their life cycle.  I am not sure if there were 5,000 or 50,000 insects, but there were a lot.  Although the swarms were huge, they were quiet.  I asked Hayley to get into the center of a swarm for a picture.

Equipment used – Canon 5D, 7D, Canon 24mm, Canon 100mm macro, Canon 65mm MP-E, MT 24-EX flash

Bug week

posted on 2011.07.26, under Canon 5D Mark II, Macro, Photos

Ants with stolen booty

5X using the Canon MP-E

Bugs, insects, invertebrates, and creepy crawlies along with other beautiful bodies coming to this blog soon.

I was at a gas station in middle america, I think it was Kentucky, and I spotted these ants stealing a hornet larva, or bee pupa, or whatever you want to call it, from a nest and carrying it away to their ant hill.

The Canon macro lens has introduced an entire new world to me!

More bodies coming soon!

Zeiss 50mm Makro from Duclos Lens


Yes, this lens is good.  Yes, it has a look that is obviously different from the Canon glass.  Click here to see the price list from Duclos.  This is a Zeiss, lens made for Nikon cameras that has been modified for Canon EOS.

The lens has no auto focus, and at f/2.0 getting sharp focus is lucky, I mean a skill that needs to be worked on.  I have been shooting in AV mode 50% of the time (aperture priority mode) when using this lens.  Normally, I shoot all manual exposure settings and auto focus when using Canon lens.  But, I wanted to free mind up from exposure concerns and give the focus ring my complete attention.

Video is coming very soon.

I shot these three people on the streets of Vancouver, Canada.

photo stats
Canon 5D
Zeiss ZF Nikon Mount 50mm 2.0
I don’t know what the f-stop was when I shot these.  I am going to guess around 4 – 5.6

A bit of history on the subjects.

The guy on the left was sitting at Starbucks on Robson in Vancouver.  Actually, there was a beautiful woman sitting in a chair and I started to snap some photos of her, then this guy rolled up and sat with her.  So, I snapped a few photos of him too.  He was a bit shy, yet photogenic.  He is a filmmaker/animator in Vancouver.

The guy in the middle was sitting at a Tim Horton’s next to three police officers and still offered to sell me hash or marijuana in 10 dollar increments, “really good stuff”.  He was a nice guy, a bit difficult to understand.  The police seemed to be aware that he was peddling produce, but were non-reactive.  I did not buy any weed, but I snapped a few great photos of the lad.

The lady on the far right, was watching a giant monitor on a Vancouver street.  The screen was being watched by thousands of Vancouverians as they watched their beloved Canucks get whooped in game 6 of the Stanley Cup.  I asked her if I could snap a few photos and she graciously accepted.



Macro vs Macro – the 100mm vs the MP-E

posted on 2011.06.02, under Macro, Photos

This is not really a “versus”, it is more of a comparison or description of the  differences between these two lens.

The MP-E is only a Macro lens.  It can get very close to your subject.  There is no wide shot using this lens.   The field of view on this lens while at its widest point is probably that of a 50 cent piece (1-2 inches).   If you want to take a picture of something bigger than your thumb, this is not the lens to use.

The 100mm Macro lens can focus into infinity.  You can stand anywhere, point the lens at anything, and this lens will bring it into focus.  The 100mm lens is not limited like the MP-E.  This is a great portrait lens and b-roll lens for shooting video.  The 100mm Macro lens has much more functionality than the MP-E.

The MP-E is strictly an amazing Macro lens.  When this lens is on your camera, you are severely restricted to shooting things that you would otherwise rarely notice – the world of minutiae.  The MP-E has a learning curve and a flash is vital to utilize and dip into the incredible potential this lens offers.

Which one should you buy ?   You should get both if you love photography and want to feed your inner child.  The 100mm offers endless potential with depth of field (video) shots and beautiful rack focuses in video mode.  The MP-E with MT-24EX flash is the dream kit for macro shooting.













Video with Canon 65mm MP-E lens

posted on 2011.05.22, under Macro, Photos, Video

The MP-E macro lens with the MT-24EX flash is a child’s dream.  If I would have had this lens/flash combo as a child I would have never put it down.

Walking home from the French Hotel, one of my favorite hangouts, I stopped and took some photos with a 24mm lens on a 5D and I shot some video with the 7D and the Canon Macro Lens, 65mm MP-E.   I shot this footage at 30p, ISO 5000, shutter speed 60 and F/16.

This is just a quick glimpse a 2 minute handheld session.

More reviews of this lens flash combo to come!

And if you are ever in Berkeley, California, the French Hotel is a must stop for coffee-house lovers.  I have been to 1000 coffee houses around the world, this place is numero uno.