Making Small Subjects Look Bigger

What does the fabric of your jeans look like? Do flower petals have small hairs? What is reflected in a dewdrop? What does a dragonfly's wing look like? You can capture all of these things in a photograph with the macro setting Macro mode allows you to take photographs of small objects so they look bigger. You're already familiar with the macro setting on your camera, so when you want to discover the world of small things, switch your camera's mode to the setting with a little flower ¿ft on it. You can zoom in on anything, including small animals like insects, but there is a limit to how close you can get to your subjects.

This minimum focus distance depends on your camera, but you can easily tell when you've reached it. If the camera can't automatically focus on your subject, you're too close to it. When this happens, move away from your subject just far enough so the autofocus indicator appears again. If you experiment with this feature, you'll get the hang of it.

Try taking a closeup picture of a small part of your favorite toy. You'll know

exactly what you photographed—the hood of a model car, a part of a Lego block, or a flower on a doll's T-shirt—but other people will have to guess to figure out what it is. The shapes and colors of closeup pictures can result in beautiful and interesting designs.

Insects are great subjects for the macro mode, such as butterflies with their beautiful markings or busy bees crawling across flowers.

You have to be fast to take a picture of anything that flies. Fortunately, lots of moths aren't bothered by photographs, and they'll sit undisturbed so you can take a whole series of pictures. Be careful any time you take pictures of an insect that can sting!

Tip The flash won't be much help when you're using macro mode. It's too bright for objects that are right in front of your lens, so it won't illuminate your subject properly. It's important to be extra still when using macro mode because the closer you get to an object, the greater the risk that camera shake will ruin your photo.

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