Macro Photography from Vietnam | November 21, 2003

I really enjoy taking Macro photos, especially of exotic plants and flowers. I love the strong colours and abstract patters that emerge. Ideally I'd be using a Macro lens. However Macro lens's are pretty expensive so at the moment I'm making do with a close-up filter.

Here are a few Macro shots I took on a recent holiday to Vietnam. I hope you enjoy them.





Posted at November 21, 2003 7:46 PM


Charles Stuart said on November 21, 2003 8:44 PM

Andy -

Have you modified these at all in Photoshop? What film did you use with these? Just wondering how you got such strong saturated colors, especically on the last shot.

Nice though, very nice.

David said on November 21, 2003 9:30 PM

Like it a lot. Especially the first one. Really nice colours there.

Shaun Inman said on November 22, 2003 12:00 AM

The second screams “Make a CSS Zen Garden entry out of me!” I can’t explain why but it does. ;D Nice work Andy.

Si said on November 22, 2003 3:42 AM

Amazing shots… love them all, especially the colour of the last one, and the composition in the first. Nice work!

Andrew said on November 22, 2003 9:39 AM

You defienately have a rare and amazing talent

Andy Budd said on November 22, 2003 9:43 AM

Cheers folks.

To answer your questions, I did a couple of things in photoshop, but nothing to boost the colour. I scanned the images in at a larger size than I was going to use them and then run despekle to get rid of any artefacts. I then sized the image down and “unsharp masked” the picture to sharpen it back up after these two processes. Finally I ran Auto Contrast just to get the contrast just right.

The colours are so saturated for a couple of reasons. First off the subjects were just extremely colourful. Getting close to the subjects and cutting out any extraneous information also tends to lead to better exposure and thus stronger colours. Occasionally I deliberately underexpose a stop just to get more saturated colours.

Finally all these shots were taken on a bright, overcast day. The diffused light really helps bring out the intensity of the colours, so if you ever want to take macro shots of very colourful things, do it on a slightly cloudy day.

Oh, and scanning the images in and displaying them on a computer screen seems to makes a big difference. The prints are all pretty colourful but when viewed on a computer they act like slides and seem to have a little more light, basically because they are emitting light rather than reflecting it. One reason why slide film is generally considered better. Really must start shooting with slide film.

vcd said on November 22, 2003 10:39 AM

They are all great. I really like the last one, the way the table top colour reflects on the cobalt blue pot. Beautiful. I would like to have a print of that one. Do you make and sell prints of your work?

Andy Budd said on November 22, 2003 10:55 AM

I’d be happy to do you (and anybody else) a print if you’d like. The price would depend on the size of the print and if you want it mounted or not. I get them hand printed and mounted at a local pro lab and would mark their cost up by %100.

As an example a 20×16 inch hand printed image mounted on 12mm mdf with painted edges would cost you 80 plus postage.

If anybody is interested in buying one of these (or any of my images) please feel free to drop me an email.

Charles Stuart said on November 22, 2003 7:09 PM

“Really must start shooting with slide film.”

I would recommend Fuji Velvia (ISO 50, slide film). I would also recommend underexposing it a 1/3 stop (or whatever you can do to shoot it at 40 instead of 50).

Fuji’s 100 speed slide film is also worthwhile checking out - although not as nice as Velvia.