Macro Photography can be extremely expensive with Quality Macro lenses going for around R6000 – R15000. This easily puts this out of the reach of many photographers, Pro and enthusiast alike.
When I first started out in photography back in the film days with my second hand Pentax P30t SLR . . . I had a quality 50mm Split focus lens that couldn’t be beaten for sharpness . . . But, It wasn’t the best for close up photography. Well what I don’t hear often spoken of in the photographic world anymore are Extension Tubes. Everyone is going crazy for “That 100mm Macro” Lens that you absolutely must own.
Well, I currently own a Tamron 24-70mm f2.8 lens on my Canon 5D MkIII . . . The top image (uncropped) is straight out of camera at the 70mm end of the lens at minimum focal length. It just doesnt work does it?
Well, problem solved. Thank you China! for a mere R150 . . . I purchased these extension tubes from an online store. While they are aren’t the same metal bodied, solid Extension Tubes I once owned on my Pentax . .. these plastic beauties still get the job done.
The bottom image (uncropped) is obtained by simply adding the 1 extension ring (31mm) between my camera body and the lens. I then manually focused while mounted on a tripod and took several photos, adjusting the focus each time further into the image (focus stacking). I then loaded all the images into one layer file in photoshop, auto aligned all the layers to ensure perfect alignment and then auto blended the layers together to increase the depth of field, getting the rings in focus from front to back.
Quick, easy and really, really cheap. Sharpness is as good as the lens you’re using.