i posted about the microscopic photography i saw at Maker Faire a couple years ago here by Rich Gibson. I saw him there again this year and spoke with him about his process. He’s developed a complex and detailed process that requires his own hardware, with hundreds and hundreds of images that are focus-stacked and composited on a computer.
His work is so unique and I wish there was some way to get close to it – I think it’d be cool to have a huge detailed print on your wall:
In doing a little research I found a hacky way to at least get in close to a subject without special equipment:
This basically expands the field of view through a lens and then compresses it through another; you shoot through a lens that’s backwards and sitting in front of your standard lens.
This got some interesting results. Here’s a carrot(click to enlarge):
Detail from this guy:
As you can see you get up really close to the subject which is cool, but DOF and vignetting are a problem; I cropped out 60% of this image which was unusable..
this is the A and N from STANLEY on the handle:
You have to mess with the settings a ton to get it right – I put a 50mm.1.4 on the camera and then had a zoom lens reversed and held over the top of it; focusing/zooming even the slightest bit can put the whole thing out of focus as you’re dealing in millimeters.
This is a simple way to get close into an image.
People who create the spider image above do use a proper macro lens, then do the stacking process to get focus.
I imagine Rich’s process is the same in theory but on another level.