Friday, April 11, 2014

Personal Photo Challenge: Taking a Closer Look

Greetings, friends!
I hope everyone has had a good week!

Today, I'm excited to be linking up to Donna's Personal Photo Challenge!
When I saw that her challenge this time was for macro shots, I decided to join in the fun.
Many of the photos I shoot are close-ups.
It's amazes me...the minute details unable to be seen with the naked eye...
...and how it opens up a whole new world that we may have missed otherwise.

I have had my trusty little point-and-shoot,
a Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W55 7.2 megapixel camera since about 2008.

It has been (and still is) the best little camera I have ever owned.
 It only took me about 4 or 5 years to realize that it has the ability to get in really close...
...that is, after I read about macro photography on the web.
I guess I didn't read that part of the manual. :)

Of course, my dream is to one day (soon, hopefully) own a DSLR...
...with a few bells and whistles...but I have the feeling that I will keep my little Sony too!


All of the photos below were shot using the macro setting, without a flash.
I'm pretty sure that most P & S cameras have the capability to shoot in macro mode...
...look for the little flower icon on your dial.
Also, do not zoom out...keep the lens at it's widest setting.

 This photo is of a darling weed that I came across while out looking for beauty.
I think I found some.

The tiny, lavender flowers were only about 1/8" in diameter...
...and the dew drops on them were not visible to the eye when I took the shots (no tripod).

The key to macro photography is having a steady hand...or a tripod, which I do sometimes use.
Many times the camera can be set atop a steady object or even braced against your own body,
inhale, hold steady and don't exhale until you snap the photo.
 Also, always push down the shutter only halfway at first to focus,
then gently push the shutter down all the way to capture your subject.

This photo is from my post entitled September, where the goldenrod was at it's peak...
...and so were the bumble bees :)

I always take several shots of my subject and like to experiment with different angles.
Many times, you will find me lying on my tummy on the ground or the floor...
...or standing on my head taking random shots up from underneath...of maybe flowers for instance..
Sometimes, my best close-ups are discovered only after I get the pics on my computer.
Often, I just snap-snap away, randomly, not seeing what's in the view finder.

This is a photo of a vintage amulet given to me by my mother-in-law.
The intricate detail in this beautiful piece just makes my heart go all a-flutter :)

The actual size is an oval of about 2" x 3".
I noticed the tiny spot of greenish patina on it afterwards...too tiny to see normally.

Natural lighting is pretty much always the key.
Using a flash most often will create an unnatural glow to the pictures, resulting in losing the detail.
There are very few times when I use a flash...and never for macro shots.


So, there you have it!
My very first effort at posting to Donna's Personal Photo Challenge!
I'm really looking forward to seeing the photos that others will be sharing too!

Spring is nearly in full bloom here and I just might get out and get a closer look!
May your weekend be blessed!


  1. Great job Debby and glad you joined in. We have similar cameras and I agree with your comments. I really hate using a flash. What a magnificent piece there in your last photo and great to appreciate all the detail so close up!

  2. What amazing photos! I'm still going back to marvel at the first one. What a capture to get the tiny dew drops to show up like that. Nothing more beautiful than nature! And the last one is gorgeous. I love noticing the detail like the tiny spot of green. It's nice to take the time to really look at our photos up close. I never use a flash any more but here in Florida it's so bright...even inside our house! Enjoy your weekend! Hugs!

    1. Thank you, Diane! Have a blessed Sunday!

  3. So glad you joined in the challenge, Debby. What great shots. I have to laugh at you contorting your body to get the best shot - I do the same thing. It's all about the angle.
    That first shot, with the tiny beads of water around each petal is just stunning.

  4. Be still my heart! Your tiny flowers are amazing, I'm in love! I too often don't know what I have until I see the shot on the computer and the ones I posted look better to me on my screen than they do on my blog :(

    1. Thank you, Patricia! Blessings on your Sunday!

  5. Thank you so much for joining in, Debby Ray, and I hope you will continue to do so in the months ahead! Once and for all, you prove the point that a point-and-shoot camera can be used to create beautiful macros. It's all in knowing how to use your equipment!

    I adore how the sunny light provides a natural frame around the tiny florets in the first photo. Great composition and color. And the bee photo is expertly captured. The details in the jewelry photo are amazing, and it was smart to pick that piece for your subject matter. Very nice clarity and spot-on white balance. Gracious, this wasn't a difficult challenge for you at all, was it?

    I used to go through the contorted maneuvers for macro shots too, but my body no longer cooperates with such antics, LOL. It was fun to read your description.

  6. Welcome to the Photo Challenge. You certainly know how to work a little point and shoot. I addition to the nice crisp detail in your photos, I love the vibrant colour. Beautiful.

  7. I would not had thought that you used a point and shoot camera. Wow! Maybe I need to learn to hold more still when I take pictures. I love your close ups.

  8. Great macro shots Debby, I can get some awesome ones from my point and shoot as well. Sometimes there's a surprise when you see an object blown up on your computer screen, and hopefully something pleasant.
    That looks like "Fireworks' goldenrod the bee is on, my favourite for the fall garden.

  9. ooooh... That first shot is exceptional. I just love it. and anything with bug wings gets my attention. Nice job.
    I so need to use a tripod.

  10. You have an eye for beauty. I have enjoyed all of these and most especially the bee. I'm hoping to remember that technique.

  11. Oh I love them all!! Now you have me curious....I've never tried that button....:) Look out world.....little bitty tiny I come!....:) Hugs!!

  12. My first visit to your lovely blog.
    I love that first photo of the flowers, and the amulet..
    amazing detail.
    Enjoyed reading some more of your recent posts too.
    Love the hymns/poems...wonderful.
    Thanks for your visit to my challenge post.
    Lovely to have you visit.

    1. Annie, thank you so much for visiting and for your kind words. Come back and visit soon! Blessings!

  13. I love your work. You have a true photographer's eye.

    1. You humble me with your kind words...thank you.

  14. You give me hope Debby! I have a little 'Point and Shoot' too.
    You really have mastered the macro.
    Oh the bumble bee is stunning - his delicate wings in repose as he drinks the nectar from the Golden Rod flowers.
    I've stalked bees around my garden but they are always way too quick for me!!!

  15. Your photos are wonderful...I am still not understanding the difference in micro and macro. They seem the same to me.

  16. Debbie, these photographs are all stunning! You are a natural, my friend!

    1. are so sweet to say that...thanks :)

  17. Beautiful shots, Debby! Each one is great! Soon my daughter and I will be in your fair state driving from Seattle!

    1. Wow...that's a long trip! Safe travels to NC!

  18. those dew drops are spectacular- as is the goldenrod bee- really nice work.

    1. Thank you, Angela! Have a blessed Sunday!

  19. Debby, so glad you've joined in the fun. I hope you'll come back again each month. Your shots are awesome. The first one is stunning- so very beautiful. And your bee is in such perfect focus!! Yes you must join us each month- we want more!!!!!

    1. Linda, thank you for your kind comments! It was fun! I am looking forward to the next one! Blessings!

  20. Awww! The lavender flower, by Far, is my favorite! Gorgeous shot!!
    They are All beautiful!

  21. Hi Debby! I was just stunned by the photo of the bee. So close and you can see so much of it!
    It's a great insight to know that you can capture more than what the eye can see from far away. But I don't think I would have seen that green patina unless you mentioned it.

    I hope you enjoyed your link today! It's fun to be challenged a little bit, isn't it? And all taken with your trusty camera... I hope you get the camera of your dreams. Who knows how much sharper the detail will be?

    1. Thank you Ceil, for all of your kind comments! Have a blessed Holy Week :)

  22. Such beautiful photography! Wow! I'm impressed with your little camera. I don't know if I'd told you before, but your header with the fenton hobnail pitcher makes my heart go pitter patter. Love it! Have a great week!

  23. Debby, there is something wonder-full in the way that you *see* God's creation. I love your photography, and I am fascinated by the idea of macro-photography. My husband and I treated each other to a nice digital camera for Christmas a couple of years ago. And we still don't know how to use all the bells and whistles!! Thanks for your hints - I may just go experimenting!

    GOD BLESS! And have a wonderful Easter - He is Risen!!

  24. Debby Ray, the brilliance of these beautiful images is stunning, especially the fact that they were shot with your point and shoot! I've been using my Sony Cybershot 3.2 Mega Pixel since about 2003, but, I have yet to take macros that compare with these, which, in turn, DO compare with DSLR cameras! You made pretty princesses out of these 'pauper' petals and have inspired me to press that 'flower' feature for magical macros, too!

    Wishing you a joyous Easter!


  25. You are doing some pretty amazing photography with your 'little camera'.

  26. Wow, wow, WOW! That first photo of the flowers with the dewdrops is amazing! Your photography leaves me speechless, my friend. Thank you for sharing such beauty.

    Hugs to you!

  27. Oh my goodness, what awesome shots!! So very impressive, love each one!!!


Thank you for stopping by today! Your sweet comments are such an encouragement to me.

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