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Weekend Reflections ~ Cabbage Leaf Lake

James, over at Newton Area Photo
hosts a fun meme called Weekend Reflections.
Grab a camera and play along.
And even if you don’t join the fun,
be sure to check out James’ dazzling photos.
Cabbage Leaf Lake
A water drop on a cabbage leaf in the sunshine.

Cabbage Leaf Lake 2
The same water drop and cabbage leaf after the sun disappeared behind a cloud.

I bought a macro lens and couldn’t figure out how to focus the darn thing.  Since it wasn’t the brand recommended by my camera manufacturer, I thought that must be the problem.  I ordered the correct lens — lenses actually, I got a set of four different magnifications — and went outside to experiment.

This is what I discovered — there was nothing wrong with the original lens that couldn’t be accounted for by operator error.   And I really need my tripod for this stuff because I am really not steady enough for this kind of detail work.   The clarity in the second water drop is better than the clarity of the first, but neither of them are what I’d like them to be.   The first one I shot hand-held.  The second one I shot with the camera braced against my knee.  I even held my breath.  Not good enough — yet.

I just ordered a remote shutter release. My next purchase will be one of those small bendable tripods (my large tripod won’t get me close enough to the ground).  Anybody have any experience with those?

If you want to see more of my shots in this series, come on back Tuesday when I participate in Thom’s, Muffed Target Photo Meme.


  1. I love these. I didn’t know you could buy a lens for macros. Hmmm I’m gonna have to upgrade my camera and get a zoom lens and macro lens as well. Plus a tripod. I want one of those small ones. Well done Q. I love these. Practice makes perfect 🙂

      1. Well yes but still I have a hard time with this. You know and I’ll be honest with you here, since the iPhone has come out with a better camera on it I haven’t used my Canon very much. I gotta get back into it 🙂

  2. the shots may be blurry but the reflections are still beautiful.
    there is one thing about the macro shots: the closer you are to the object, the shallower the depth of field. have been considering getting one of those small tripods but haven’t bought it yet…

    1. Polona — I have learned that the depth of field changes with proximity. Apparently the light does, too. I finally figured out how to get my flash to work on manual settings. That helped a lot — not that I used it on either of these shots. I think they came before I found the right setting.

  3. Yes, my oldest son has a gorillapod, one of those bendable-legged tripods, and it works great.

    The first photo also makes it look like there is a face on the droplet — makes it look like a smiling dolphin.

  4. Well I’m sure you would learn how to use it properly and be a master in it! Soon, you would be showing us a buttload of beautiful macro photos! 🙂

  5. It sure does create an interesting effect. My Canon does not produce very super macro photos and it’s really frustrating. Ah well… Hmmm… it could be operator error here, too.

    1. Kay, you know to use the little flower emblem setting to do macros, right? Also, since you have a Canon, which I used to have, I know you can zoom beyond a point where it won’t focus, even if the view screen shows you a perfectly clear picture. You might not want to try enlarging things too far. Plus, enlarging makes the picture a little grainy and narrows the area of focus. All things that have to be compensated for.

  6. I like the blue flecks of color in the first one.
    I don’t see a dolphin face like Barbara but after I read her comment I thought it reminded me of the face of the live water in the movie The Abyss. 🙂

    As far as a bendable tripod I think I recall reading that you need to take into consideration what the weight of the lense is that you’ll be using. It’s been a few months since I researched it and I can’t remember. On the Gorillapod site you can choose your camera and they will tell you what they recommend for what equipment you are using.

    1. Carletta — I never watched the Abyss and we’ll keep it that way. And thanks for your Gorillapod advice — I just ordered one!

  7. Quilly you are getting very romantic ! a water drop on a cabbage leave, hahahaha ! that’s the best I ever heard. But the result is amazing I thought it was a diamond !

  8. Practice makes perfect. its been a year and a half since I got my camera, and I am still experimenting on it. If you have an auto/manual focus setting, try using the manual and then click the shutter release.

  9. I like that cloudy picture best!

    Most of my macro shots end up a bit blurry like that. I’ve discovered that my rather inexpensive camera simply can’t get that close to the subject I’m photographing. Sending 4 boys to college is putting a DSLR on the bottom of the wish list.

  10. A tripod is definitely on my wish list — so many of my photos end up blurry or dull because I just can’t hold still enough. I’ve tried the tricks of bracing my arms, and using the timer instead of the button, but looks like I still need more help!

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