5 Reasons why you should do macro photography


Macro photography - shoot in miniature

Macro Photography is a very popular area of photography and if you haven't tried it yet let me give you five reasons when you should give it a go.

Discover a whole new world 

Macro Photography allows us to discover a whole new miniature world with virtually endless possibilities. Broadly speaking Macro photography is about photographing small things, close up and blowing them up larger than life. The number of subjects available are endless but bugs and flowers are very popular but as many of you know I love water drop photography. Small things such as waterdrops often go unnoticed or are taken for granted but freezing that moment in time can create spectacular images.

When you start doing macro photography a whole new creative world is opened up providing a whole new range of subjects that were under your nose the whole time.

It's cheap

Macro Photography has never been more accessible. There is gear available that is suitable for all budgets that will allow you to start capturing macro. A standard kit lens on many different types of camera's will often be an option. Look out for the small green leaf icon on your camera's mode dial. Whilst not shooting true macro, they allow you to focus in close to blow small things up large.

Additional items can be bought very cheaply like this macro reverse ring. It allows you to attach your lens on backwards and achieve a true macro magnification. We also have these extender rings that add space between your lens and the sensor again giving a better magnification. They work well with prime lenses that you may already have lying around.

The next step would be to buy a true macro lens that provides 1:1 magnification. Although this one is relatively expensive there are much cheaper versions that will still produce excellent images.

I've created a video before about shooting macro photography on a budget that explains all this in more detail so check that out.

Develop studio skills

Macro Photography is no different to other areas of photography in that composition, light, colour and tone are hugely important. By carefully considering these things in your macro photography it will ensure your images stand out. Macro photography often requires additional light. Controlling the light through the use of a couple of flashes, getting it off your camera with wireless triggers will help you to start expanding and learning your studio skills. Because you are doing it on a small scale you don't need much space making it more accessible. The principles and concepts of working with flash and other studio items such as backgrounds and reflectors simply scale up once you are working in bigger studios and shooting portraits.

Because you have total control of your environment and lighting it also gives you the opportunity and time to totally understand exposure and start shooting in manual mode. You can also take your lighting to the next level with investment in things like barn doors, flags and honeycombs like this that control the direction and amount of light that hits your subject.


If you've been watching my landscape photography vlogs you'll have seen I've been caught out by the weather on a number of occasions. The beauty of macro photography is there is so much to shoot indoors meaning when you don't want to brave the weather you can stay warm and dry.

If you are feeling the call of the great outdoors though there is plenty of macro shots to be captured when you are out and about all year round.

Food and Product Photography

The skills you develop exploring the world of macro photography act as a gateway to other forms of photography. Especially if you zoom out by a small amount. The skills you learn around composition and lighting can directly be applied to food and product photography. An area of photography where there is still money to be made. If you have been shooting studio macro work for a while then you will already have all the equipment you need. And if not at least the Instagram shots of your tasty dinner will be at the next level.

If I have done to convince you to give it a try then you check out my series of macro tutorials that will take you from the basics up the more advanced method of photo stacking - Click here.

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5 Reasons why you should do landscape photography


Pretty much everyone now has a camera in some way, shape or form. Here are 5 good reasons you should be giving landscape photography a try.

1. Get’s you into the Great Outdoors.

You can not do landscape photography sat on your couch. It gets you out of the house, into interesting locations and promotes a more active lifestyle. There is virtually no downside to this and your overall wellbeing will be increased. One of my favourite things in the world is getting home after a day out shooting landscape photography, listening to some great music, then sitting down and post processing your images. If you do this with a friend, it is even better.

2. Landscape photography is easy.

Let me explain. Anyone can give landscape photography a try. It’s just so accessible. Head out the door with your smart phone in hand and start shooting what you see. You don’t need to worry about adding light like flashes or reflectors, you don’t need tripods and filters to get great shots and cityscapes work just as well as landscapes. There are also plenty of locations where you can grab great shots just by sticking your camera out the window of your car.

3. It’s Hard

Whilst it is very accessible, mastering it can take an entire lifetime. There are technical aspects that must be learned like compositions rules, camera settings and the exposure triangle. To take your images even further you need an artistic vision to tell a story. It is all about the story. Always.

It is also really hard getting up at 4am to catch a sunrise. Plus climbing up a mountain is no picnic, although, you do often have one at the top.

However when you take on these challenges you will be rewarded with great images and a deep sense of satisfaction that will keep you wanting more. It does not hurt to be lucky either, especially when it comes to the weather.

4. Understand light

Doing landscape photography will increase your understanding of light and exposure very quickly. That will benefit your photography as a whole. It gets you thinking about sunrises, sunsets, golden hours, contrast, shadows, highlights, mid tones, backlighting and front lighting.

The light on your subject is as important as the subject itself and understanding how to best use the light to tell your story will really take your images to the next level.

5. Attention

Creating landscape photographs is an excellent way to draw attention to yourself and build a social media following around your work. Pretty much everyone loves to look at a beautiful landscape and quality images quickly gain attention. This is particularly true if you focus down onto capturing great images of your local area. People will quickly identify with the subjects in your pictures which can create an opportunity to sell your work and gain commissions if you are good enough.

Finally, a warning:

If you catch the bug you will never be able to look at a nice landscape again without thinking about how you could capture it in an image. You will permanently be looking at weather forecasts, cloud cover, tidal times, sunset times and your desire for gear will be unlikely to reduce.

Also, stay safe, apply some common sense to the places you visit and remember there is no photograph worth risking your life for.

For me landscape photography makes me so happy that, if it went unchecked, I would spend all my time doing it and would probably forget to speak to anyone ever again in my life.

Please subscribe to the YouTube channel and leave a comment down below and let me know what you love about landscape photography.

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5 Reasons to Take on a Photography Project


Start a photography project today.

Whether you are starting out or a seasoned shooter, everyone should take on a photography project at some stage in their lives. Here are 5 reasons why:

1. Find some direction.

Photographers of any level know it is easy to get stuck in a rut where you feel uninspired with the photographs you are creating. There are a couple of sure fire ways to break free of this. Firstly, look at other peoples work. This is easy to do but may only have short term effects. The second more effective option, albeit more difficult, is to take on a photography project. The theme and content of your project is entirely up to you but starting with a clear and defined focus will give you the direction you need to break free of the rut. Your project could be a 365 project with a common theme running through it, a 50 in 50 project where you take 50 portraits of strangers using a 50mm lens, you could shoot a landscapes in every county in your country. The options are endless and you can go as big or as small as you see fit. Going small is particularly good if you are armed with a macro lens. Check out Eddie the Bugman. My current photography project is called Water Drop Wednesday. Check it out here -

2. Improve your photography.

Use the opportunity of shooting your project to improve your skills. If you are just starting out then aim to get out of auto mode and capture proper exposure. Check out my free eBook Understanding Exposure that will help you along with this - Get used to visualising a shot before looking through the viewfinder and think about the composition. Before pressing the shutter button, take notice of the edge of your frame and the background behind your subject. As your project continues try to apply lessons you have learned from previous shots and apply them to your latest picture. Try to make every photograph better than the one before. Throughout the project, look back over your previous images; you are bound to see an improvement as the project has progressed, this serves as a very good motivator along the way.

3. Build a social media following.

When I embarked on my first 365 project it was purely a personal project but many photographers will use a photography project to help build a following on social media. In this age where everyone is shooting pictures, creating something special to stand out is a must and a focused photography project can very much fit the bill. My 365 was a family project so I originally only shared it with family and friends through Flickr. The project very quickly became a documentary of the year with a short description that accompanied each shot detailing a notable or amusing part of the day. Family and friends became avid followers and quickly began adding to the comments enhancing the overall documentary aspect of the project. Admittedly my family and friends were a biased audience but they came back day after day; the same principle applies to building a public following. If you have a clear idea that people can understand they will soon begin to engage. They will feed into the work, enhancing the project and your experience of it. High quality images, posted on a regular basis are key alongside some good quality engagement. For example, if someone leaves a comment like 'Awesome shot', do not just reply 'thanks'. This effectively ends the conversation so instead, share a little piece of info, show some insight or ask that person a question. You might be surprised just how many people respond to this positively. Follow me on Instagram.

4. To Challenge yourself.

This is an important one that should have veins running through everything  you do. When things get to the point of being easy it is likely that your learning will have ceased and real progress will have halted. It is not always immediately obvious when we get to this point as it often creeps up on us silently when we become more comfortable. If you have time to watch 10 episodes of Breaking Bad back to back, I would suggest you might be there. You can avoid this plateau though by continually pushing yourself out of your comfort zone and driving your own progress and growth. Get up out of your chair right now and go and capture an image. I guarantee there is a good shot within two minutes of where you are right now.

5. It is Fun.

Depending on the challenge you have set yourself a photography project can often be tough, but it will also be fun. I often think, when I am shooting, is there anything else I would rather be doing right now? The answer is always no. Especially when i am shooting with friends or collaborating with interesting people. Taking on a photo project is a lot like playing a video game (when I had time to play video games). You progress through many levels and pick up skills and knowledge along the way as you get better and better. Sometimes you might falter and have to re-do a level which will be frustrating and challenging. Eventually you fight through and get to end where you will feel a massive sense of achievement for what you have completed. Unlike a video game though you will be left with something to hold on to and you will have created some art that you will be proud of. The boost to your portfolio will be proof that you have not wasted your time and you will know the well constructed and thought out project was all worth it. Like a video game though, the sense of achievement will last for about two minutes; you will immediately starting thinking about the next one. Start a photography project today and you'll be hooked.