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  1. #1
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    Photo Equipment for Fly Tying

    I was trying last night to take some digital pics of the flies I am tying to start a "catalog of flies that work and I actually use". However, I had huge difficulties with sharpnes, focus etc. I was using a Canon A710 and set it on the highest resolution settings and then cropped the pix to get a somewhat good close-up.

    What cameras do you guys use and are there some tricks how to take good pictures?

    Thanks, Karel

    Live long and fly fish
    Visit my blog Tenkara On The Fly

  2. #2
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    Re: Photo Equipment for Fly Tying

    I do not tie, but someone gave me some flies that had come from the UK and they were so different from anything else I'd ever seen, I wanted to take pics of all of them. It was quite a learning experience.

    This is what I learned: Start with good lighting. Best option is to set your camera up on a tripod very close to your vice - we're talking inches, not feet. Make sure you have a solid color background behind the fly. Light or dark, depending on the colors in your fly. Take photo in macro mode, which may take some playing around with and is, in fact the hardest part. I am only just learning to get the hang of this myself, so I am looking forward to seeing some other replies to your question.

    Oh, and I have a Pentax Optio WP.


  3. #3
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    Re: Photo Equipment for Fly Tying

    Learn the macro settings, if your camera has them. Most digitals do now. You need macro if you want those close-up shots. It allows the focal point to be much closer to the lens, which in turns allows you to shoot much closer to the fly.

    I had a Nikon Coolpix 5700 that had the option of using additional filters or lenses on an optional tube sort of thing that went over the lens. Some digital point-n-clicks have this option, though most don't. If yours does, then great. Get yourself some diopter lenses (they are pretty cheap on eBay). They will allow you to put the fly right up to the glass, and it adds a magnification factor as well. You can get shots like this no problem:







    The only problem with "fake" macro photography with point-n-shoots like this is the depth of field is extremely shallow. The f-stop doesn't go down far enough. With flies it's really no big deal, you're only normally shooting on one plane anyway. With more 3D objects, it's a much bigger problem. True SLR cameras with very large apertures will solve this problem for you. You can see how shallow it is in this pic:



    The more magnification you use, the shallower the DOF gets.

    Make sure to use a good flash, too. Normally the built in flash of the camera sucks. If you can, get a remote flash of some kind, or just light the fly with some very bright lights. A fash shutter and a large aperture will give you very crisp close-ups.


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    Re: Photo Equipment for Fly Tying

    Interesting reading...


    Winter 2005

    How the Pros Grade Hackle
    Readers' Favorite Flies Uncorked
    A. K. Best on Photographing Flies
    Guide Flies for Florida's Backcountry
    Tie a Realistic Hare's-Ear Nymph
    Plus: Lovable Leeches, Beadhead Basics, New Saltwater Shrimp, Matching Western Stoneflies






  5. #5
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    Re: Photo Equipment for Fly Tying

    Thanks for the great feed back, I will be playing with the camera over the next couple days/evenings. Of course, the camera is my wife's (I believe it's the first gadget that was not a hand-"her"-down...) since she was complaining about our old digital camera. If I figure it out, I will some pix on the forum.

    Karel

    Live long and fly fish
    Visit my blog Tenkara On The Fly

  6. #6
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    Re: Photo Equipment for Fly Tying

    Fly Ty R pretty much hit in on the head with his post. Number one thing in my opinion is bright lighting for sure. Even if you can't figure it out, post some pics and then we can tell you where to go from there.


  7. #7
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    Re: Photo Equipment for Fly Tying

    Definitely make sure you're not shooting in low light. This will force the camera's metering system to decrease your shutter speed and consequently introduce blur (unless you're shooting with a tripod). If you have an SLR, stop it down to f/22 at least for the superb DOF. I sometimes go down even more. Just know that the more you stop down with an SLR, the greater chance that you'll notice specks and dust bunnies in your image. That's the dust that collects on your sensor from changing lenses. You can always Photoshop those out.

    On a side note, I recently sold my Sigma 105mm macro and replaced it w/ a Canon 100mm macro. It is sooooooo sweet. So much better and quieter than the Siggy. Worth every penny (if you're into photography that is). Its the kind of feeling when you buy a brand spanking new rod. Costs as much as one too. I'll post pics of random flies that I'll be tying later this week.


  8. #8
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    Re: Photo Equipment for Fly Tying

    Quote Originally Posted by C&R View Post

    On a side note, I recently sold my Sigma 105mm macro and replaced it w/ a Canon 100mm macro. It is sooooooo sweet. So much better and quieter than the Siggy. Worth every penny (if you're into photography that is). Its the kind of feeling when you buy a brand spanking new rod. Costs as much as one too. I'll post pics of random flies that I'll be tying later this week.
    I plan to order a macro lens next week. I looking at getting a Canon EF 50mm EF f/2.5 Lens. Although I would like a 100mm its just out of my price range. This lens goes for $230 which is too cheap to resist

    My camra: Canon 10d


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    Re: Photo Equipment for Fly Tying

    Quote Originally Posted by NJDrew View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by C&R View Post

    On a side note, I recently sold my Sigma 105mm macro and replaced it w/ a Canon 100mm macro. It is sooooooo sweet. So much better and quieter than the Siggy. Worth every penny (if you're into photography that is). Its the kind of feeling when you buy a brand spanking new rod. Costs as much as one too. I'll post pics of random flies that I'll be tying later this week.
    I plan to order a macro lens next week. I looking at getting a Canon EF 50mm EF f/2.5 Lens. Although I would like a 100mm its just out of my price range. This lens goes for $230 which is too cheap to resist

    My camra: Canon 10d
    Just in case you weren't aware of it, the 50mm is not 1:1 macro. Its 1:2. Let me know how you like it...post pics if you can.


  10. #10
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    Re: Photo Equipment for Fly Tying

    Quote Originally Posted by C&R View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NJDrew View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by C&R View Post

    On a side note, I recently sold my Sigma 105mm macro and replaced it w/ a Canon 100mm macro. It is sooooooo sweet. So much better and quieter than the Siggy. Worth every penny (if you're into photography that is). Its the kind of feeling when you buy a brand spanking new rod. Costs as much as one too. I'll post pics of random flies that I'll be tying later this week.
    I plan to order a macro lens next week. I looking at getting a Canon EF 50mm EF f/2.5 Lens. Although I would like a 100mm its just out of my price range. This lens goes for $230 which is too cheap to resist

    My camra: Canon 10d
    Just in case you weren't aware of it, the 50mm is not 1:1 macro. Its 1:2. Let me know how you like it...post pics if you can.
    Yea, I saw that. Im going to try it out and see. If I need a true 1:1 I could always buy a 100mm 2.8L 1:1 later and use both.


  11. #11
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    Re: Photo Equipment for Fly Tying

    So, I haven taken all the advise of you guys and did what I think resulted in the best picx of the flies tied the last few nights with the camera at hand. Let me know what you think!
    Thanks, Karel

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    Live long and fly fish
    Visit my blog Tenkara On The Fly

  12. #12
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    Re: Photo Equipment for Fly Tying

    Not bad. They are a little on the dark site, but not bad for you first time out.


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