Mayfly (and a few words about close-up/macro photography)

MayflyTo view more of my photography please click on

Mayflies are good subjects for photography; while they do fly they also have prolonged periods of being sedentary and are an easy target (albeit in the darker parts of the forest and under leaves). Mayflies have a short life span above the water and cannot eat during that period. It’s a wondrous sight to see them emerge like reverse rain from a lake. If you do try to photograph this insect you will probably need a flash, you will most likely get light fall off and as in this shot, you will want to process so that some of the background is visible. Your flash will have impact on the very translucent wings, as any dust becomes a multicolored pixel (as in this shot). It’s much easier from a depth of field perspective to shoot an insect that is parallel to your sensor, if not you have to hope your choice of aperture will accommodate the angle. I tend to aim for f11 as a good starting point. When using one flash there are two things to bear in mind: 1. at a certain point (it depends on the lens) as your aperture closes, diffraction will occur and the shot will look soft; and 2. if you keep your shutter speed low more ambient light will enter the picture. Should you do the latter the flash may not freeze action or movement. My preference is for sharpness, no diffraction and when using a single flash I can live with some light fall off.

4 responses

  1. As usual you have really captured the beauty of this minibeast


    September 1, 2015 at 11:38 am

  2. Lovely macro 😊


    September 1, 2015 at 11:28 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.