Fauna Flash

Marmalade Hoverfly Episyrphus balteatus

Marmalade Hoverfly (Episyrphus balteatus)

I can’t get over the detail and sharpness I can get with this flash unit. With my macro I have always tried to get closer, but getting closer usually means a compromise between shallower depth of field and detail. With the speedlight I can now narrow the aperture enough to allow more detail to be seen at a closer range, even in shade, like most of these images were taken in.

Marmalade Hoverfly Episyrphus balteatus

Marmalade Hoverfly (Episyrphus balteatus)

Apart from increased detail and over all sharpness I also have reduced noise as a bonus. The levels appear quite stable, too, so hardly any post processing has been done on these images.

Marmalade Hoverfly Episyrphus balteatus

Marmalade Hoverfly (Episyrphus balteatus)

At one stage I thought I might need better flash diffusion as I was getting too many light artifacts, but after dialling down the flash power and balancing it with the camera exposure I have reduced most of these. I don’t think you need to eliminate them entirely, as I think in some instances they add to the image, provided they are subtle.

Botanophila fugax

Botanophila fugax a very small root maggot fly

Large Rose Sawfly Arge pagana larva

Large Rose Sawfly (Arge pagana) larva feasting on my rose bush leaves, again

Garden Spider Araneus diadematus

Garden Spider (Araneus diadematus) quite a young one

Common Froghopper Philaenus spumarius

Common Froghopper (Philaenus spumarius) yep, with whiskers

Common Froghopper Philaenus spumarius

Common Froghopper (Philaenus spumarius). He got a little shy

End of news flash. Just a flash in the pan, I know, but Gordon is the saviour of the Universe.

Please click on an image for a larger more detailed view. Clicking a second time may get you a little closer.

Rear garden, Staffordshire, England. June 2017.


25 thoughts on “Fauna Flash

  1. What a great idea getting the flash unit.

    My brain’s a little slow these days and I never thought of the actual ability to use a smaller aperture while using my LED ring light.

    I bought if for flower photography in deep shade originally, but I only ever used it on food photography indoors. Now I’ve traded in my macro lens and have no 18-200mm lens, the 2 rings I have to put on the lens (before sliding on the LED ring light), don’t fit the new lenses. I’ve found the same issue with my Polarising filters. With cash in short supply these days, I’ve never got around to buying all the new-sized filters and rings.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That can be a problem with technology and when changing, sometimes things don’t always work together, or they have to have their firmware updated.

      Another bonus with the flash I have found is that it will virtually freeze the subject, over ruling your camera’s exposure speed virtually eliminating hand shake.

      Photography for me is a hobby, but it ca be expensive so I have to make compromises. I woulld like a 150-600 telephoto lens for birding, but they are mighty expensive.

      Liked by 1 person

      • A 150-600mm lens would be a real treat. I’ve found the (third party) Sigma 150-500mm lens quite sharp and a fair bit cheaper. I admit I make compromises too. Big ones πŸ™‚ sometimes. But now I’m not working, I don’t need many clothes, shoes or even, a social life or holidays. I do wish I could afford a car though πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      • Gee, my Sigma 150-500 was about 60% of that. I quite liked the Tamron (18-200mm lens for my Sony a6000), but it ‘broke’ when I had the fall in May 2015. I’ve still got it, but if won’t autofocus at crucial times and in the end, I got fed up with the intermittent nature of the focusing and I put it back in it’s box at the back of my photography drawer.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Although I don’t have one, the 18-200mm is a very versitile lens, and I am sorry yours broke when you had your fall. I have a Nikon 70-300mm lens, but it doesn’t have enough reach for me. I have my Sigma 105mm macro lens, which I use 99.9% of the time, and then there is my Nikon 18-55mm kit lens, which I use for general photography. What I would like to do is get even closer with my macro for the smaller things in life, but would need Kenko extension tubes for that, and they are not cheap.


    • Having a dedicated flash unit which you have more control over has certainly opened up things for me. Because of the flash cycle being so quick it over rules the camera exposure speed and will freeze frame your subject, virtually eliminating any shake from handholding, which is another bonus for me πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

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