A New Leaf

I cannot imagine how many close-up images of little critters I have made in my life.  Many of those photos are due to the fact that I look at almost every plant leaf that I pass. There is a lot of activity going on there.  There’s a whole lot of resting as well.  In short, there are critters on (and under) those leaves. These shots usually aren’t the most artful images you will make, but if you want sharp pictures of the miniature world of wildlife, check out those leaves

An abandon outer shell of the 17 Year Periodical Cicada.

The Daddy-long Legs is a common little critter to find on the face of a leaf. This guy is an arachnid.  It is in the general spider family but the lack of two body parts means it is not a true spider.

One handsome dude.

An orgy or a war?

I find grasshoppers both on and below leaves.  This is a good place to find them early in the morning.

Of course flies will perch anywhere, and the flat side of a leaf makes for a nice place to rest.  It is amazing just how many different kinds of flies there are….and just how interesting their detail can be.

Green leaves provide a lot of camouflage for insects. This Tree Cricket is “hiding in plain sight”.

Depth of field is always an issue when you are working up close. Too little and a key part of your subject may be soft.  Too much and an obtrusive background may dominate your picture.  Leaves provide a great background.  A leaf with a small insect on it, will provide a clean background even at f 32.  On the other hand if there is some movement to stop, you can often get by with lesser apertures, like f 14 or so, because you are usually shooting flat, with your camera back (sensor) parallel to the leaf.

When you are shooting angled shots, you will likely sacrifice some sharpness in your subject.  That not only can be acceptable but sometimes more artistic in appearance.

Angling your perspective and a lot of depth of field (f22 and on) can surely mean a distracting background.  This is wildlife photography and sometimes you take what you get, and do the best you can.’

Have a great day

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