Lighting set up for macro

Discussion in 'Lighting Equipment' started by a_p|20, Jul 12, 2018.

  1. Hey all,

    Before I start maybe some short background info: I followed 2 years of photography at college but never finished the studies. I would say that I have a more than average knowledge of photography but am no professional by any means... I am now more concentrated on drawing/visual arts but I'd like to incorporate photography in my image making process.

    For a drawing project I would like to shoot some macro photos of parts of the face (nose, ear, eye, etc...) that will serve as references for drawings/monotypes.

    I'd like to get advise on a lighting set-up that will give me some decent photos taking into account the equipment I have (I'd rather not make any expensive investments if possible. Small purchases are ok (max 100€/115$ combined)).

    - Nikon F80
    - Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO macro super lens
    - TMY-2, Tri-X 400 & TMZ. Most likely developed in a lab. I asked the photography store that sends the negatives to the lab what developer they use but he didn't know. Developing the negatives myself isn't completely impossible but I would have to buy all chemicals again and have to figure out if the tap at the sink I use can give me the right temperature for rinsing. (I think the best option for now is have them developed (so I guess no suggestions that need pull or push developing.))
    - Olympus E-300 (digital camera; I don't think I can use that Sigma lens on the E-300?)
    (- Zuiko digital 14-45mm F3.5-5.6)
    (- AF Nikkor 50/F1.8D)
    (- Sigma 28-70mm D Aspherical)

    I can darken a room and use a desk lamp to illuminate the face. I have a whiteboard that I can use as a reflector? (maybe there are other easy to obtain materials that I can use as reflectors? (styrofoam?))
    Maybe there are outdoor setting that can work to my advantage?

    Below are some examples to show you what I am looking for (images that give the illusion of three-dimensionality, wide tonal range, ...).


    Someone in another thread suggested a 150watt equivalent LED to illuminate the subject (combined with a reflector to soften shadows) so I might try that...

    Curious to hear your opinions
  2. Closer examination of the baby picture leads me to think that some sort of striplight may have been used. The shadows under the lip are softer in the horizontal direction than the vertical. The specular reflections on top of the lip look too broad to be from a point source as well.

    This could possibly be from a domestic fluorescent ceiling fitting.

    The eye closeup has been lit from slightly beneath with a very hard light. Possibly a small flash pointed across and up the subject's nose. Apart from the focus, little thought or care appears to have gone into the lighting or control of tone here
    a_p|20 and Jochen like this.

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