Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Helicon Soft and Image Stacking

While I wait for certain bits of hardware to arrive so that I may carry on with my jumping spider project, I thought it would be interesting to supplement the action images of the jumpers with some static images. Like it or not, shallow depth of field is something that must be endured and managed in macro or close-up photography. I thought it might make for a refreshing change if some of the static images were "stacked". Image stacking is a process where several images of a subject are merged together digitally to create a single image with the desired depth of field. The image in the ad below was created by stacking 8 images of the jumping spider. The difficult part: merging the images together in Phototshop, etc., is taken care of by this dedicated software.

If you are interested in this software, go take a look around their site for more info. Then, come back here and buy it from me at a 15% discount!

Helicon Lite (One Year License)

Helicon Lite (Unlimited License)

Helicon Pro (One Year License)

Helicon Pro (Unlimited License)

Helicon Pro X64 (Unlimited License)

Monday, June 14, 2010

Images from Arizona and Newfoundland

Here are a few images from the Arizona Bats and Owls Workshop which was followed immediately by the Outdoor Photography Canada Puffin Workshop.

A second Bat Workshop is coming up in September.


Saturday, June 12, 2010

Red Morph Regal Jumping Spider

This image represents the beginnings of what I hope will be a definitive series of jumping spiders. My summer project will include the "bold jumper" (phidippus audax) and the "regal jumper" (phidippus regius). The series will focus on action and story-telling imagery. I hope to cover all the natural history of the jumper along with predator-prey, courtship-mating and everything in between. The resulting imagery should be world class.


"The females of this Floridian species exist as grey morph and red morph. The males are black and look almost identical to the well-photographed "bold jumper" species which is often seen in the south Texas photography contests. Many of the existing jump shots of jumping spiders are of the left-to-right variety, effectively hiding the huge, inquisitive eyes. This shot was painstakingly designed to show the jumping behavior as well as the big eyes. The distance across the gap is less than one inch. Flash output is no greater than 1/32 to keep the effective shutter speed at about 1/17000. D300, Sigma 150mm macro, 4 SB-800 flashes (2 in softbox, 1 backlit, one head-on for catchlights), Phototrap"