Macro photography: 3 tips to make it happen with your phone

medium_9320942406photo credit: Tim Good: Photography by Tiwago


So you might know that on the 23rd of this month the prompt for the Photo A Day challenges is macro. If you played along last year, macro was a huge hit. People loved exploring the photography technique, myself included, so I thought we could explore it again.

First, you might be wondering, what is macro?

Macro photography (or photomacrography or macrography, and sometimes macrophotography), is extreme close-up photography, usually of very small subjects, in which the size of the subject in the photograph is greater than life size.

To me, in the instance of Photo A Day, we’re looking at an extreme close-up. Here’s some tips for getting your macro on.


1. Get ready for your close up

I bought some tulips yesterday to experiment with macro. Above is an example of how NOT to do macro. I pushed my phone into the middle of the flower to get as close as I could. My phone freaked out and just wouldn’t focus. So, don’t do that. Instead put your phone a few more centimetres/inches away and let the focus settle {click the middle of your screen to sharpen the subject matter}, then snap your photo. Experiment with how close your phone will let you get to the subject.

2. Keep your hand as steady as possible

A slight shake in your hand when taking the photo will result in blur, and ain’t nobody got time for that. So make sure you’re resting your hand on something steady. Last year someone shared an awesome tip. You can use your headphone {if you’re using an iPhone} to take the photo. Just use the volume button to snap the photo.

3. Purchase a macro lens for your phone

Now, I don’t know about other smart phones because I only have an iPhone but last year I purchased a cheap lens from eBay for macro day. This year I purchased a more expensive Ollo Clip from the Apple Store. It’s a 4-in-1 lens that has fish eye, wide angle and two types of macro. If you search eBay you can find a lens as cheap as $2 including postage {like this one}. This is the one I bought.





And that’s it. If you’re using a DSLR or fancy camera, just get as close as possible and snap away. And if you’re using another type of smart phone {not an iPhone} use the above tips and see how you go. If you’ve got some tips to share with other smart phone users, I’d love for you to share in the comments. One day I’ll get an android phone to test these things out, I promise.

Happy snapping on macro day! I can’t wait to see your photos. x

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