I was really excited about this challenge when I saw it. I always loved Macro Photography. Unfortunately, I dont have a very good macro lens. So I decided to take some inspiration from an earlier challenge (Free-Lensing). Ultimately, after having a conversation with a friend about the sexual nature of tools, I decided on a screw and screwdriver as my subjects. Pulled out my T1i and free lenses my 50mm 1.8. Shot in monochrome f1.8 ISO 400 and 1/100 shutter speed.

- Nikita Ostrovsky

Fujifilm s100fs — 1/1000" — F3.6 — ISO100 — 7.1mm — Velvia film simulation

I have always been fascinated by how quickly palmettos recover from fire damage. No matter how burned out a grove is, the palmetto will find a way to recover. A few days after a fire, small shoots of green will start to dot even the most blackened field. This week, I was lucky enough to find the start of this process.

- Mike Case

Shooting Summary:

Artist: Meredith Steele
Camera: Canon EOS Rebel XS
Lens: EF-S 18-55 IS
F-stop 5.6 ISO 1600 no flash


This photo was taken in my jewelry design studio. The answer to the question "what the heck is that thing?!" is that it is a stainless steel dapping set that I use to hammer metal into dome shapes. The actual size of the big dapper is about 3 inches long. It can also be considered a self portrait. :)

- Meredith Steele

Nikon D90, 85mm DX macro, ISO 1250, f/18, 1/800 sec with a SB600 flash.

This photo was an unplanned shot while attempting to take some stop-motion pictures of my honey bees flying into their hives. I had started the hives only a few weeks ago and assumed they would be a good subject for the challenge. Unfortunately most of the bees weren't flying in the overcast weather and the low light also made it difficult to shoot the volume of photos I needed to catch a bee in flight and in focus. Desperate for another subject I realized the mosquitoes bothering me represented a new opportunity. This may have been the only time I wanted a mosquito to land on me. Fortunately she couldn't get me through my jeans.


- Joe

I was doing my sink full of dishes when I stumbled on Tuesday's dinner: my submission for this week's challenge. (Don't judge - I'm sure you've had worse growing in your kitchen!) I tried a couple shots from overhead, but this eye level shot really put things in perspective. The mold (Google says it's Aspergillus niger) looks like trees in an alien landscape (basmati rice). Shot with a big f-stop to have more focal depth. Only corrected for color temperature and sensor dust.

1/60 sec, f/20, ISO 800, 100mm

Canon 50D, Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 macro USM, 580EX, Q Flash F170 ring flash

- Ray Liu

Not that this challenge will need any more macro photos of flowers, but I happened to grab these on accident. My girlfriend and I took our mothers out for a belated Mother's Day dinner to a fancy pants restaurant at the Starr Pass Resort near Tucson here and I snapped some photos of blooming cactus with no intention of participating in this week's challenge. I picked this photo because I think the focal length was the most interesting, especially since I achieved it with the not so special kit lens I had on at the time. The cactus itself becomes more of the focal point than the flowers, which I figured would be more fun than yet another up close photo of some flowers.
Shot with a Nikon D5000 w/ 18-55 kit lens @ 50mm, ISO 280, F/8, 1/60sec. The only post processing was a white balance and auto enhance adjustment in Aperture 3.

- Brett Stanton

To whom it may or may not concern,

I couldn't get to sleep (Java final in 10 hours) , so I tossed and turned until I gave up and hopped online. First thing I land on is this macro contest, so one glass of Stoli's later I'm nose to nose with my roommates black-light bulb with my new Pentax K-X. Two glasses and one confused roommate later, I'm sending you these pictures. Now hopefully I can get some sleep, cheers!


The Deets
ISO 400
Pentax K-X
Kit Lens (18-55mm AL lens)
Exposure 1/60 (I'm pretty sure...)

- Chris Frantz

Entry into Macro Photography Contest
Date Shot: 5/14/2011

Camera: Canon 7d
Lens: Canon EF-S 60mm 1:2.8 Macro
Flash: Canon MT-24 Twinlight Macro Flash

Shot Settings:
Exposure: 1/250 sec
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/11

Being an Avid Macro photographer, I loved seeing this contest, I was going to my brothers house this weekend and I knew he had a great collection of roses of varying colors. I brought my camera and went out into his yard thinking I was going to get a flower picture, instead I saw the business end of a dead yellow jacket in one flower, so I captured this picture. I also got a good 2.5x magnification shot with my MP-E macro lens of a rusty screw in an outdoor light fixture, but I let my friends decide which they liked better and this one seems to be more popular.

- David Kamminga

Birthday party weekend at my house and I was distracted by the honey do list and goal-tending all the mad kiddies thrashing about. As the day, and heat, wore on something gooey caught my eye and I remembered this weeks challenge. I'd almost let slip the opportunity to finally try out my newly acquired macro lens... and it was quickly melting away! I present my case for the best part of any Carvel cake - the Crunchies. Nikon D90, 70-180 Micro at 180mm. ISO 400, f5.6 at 1/100.

- Michael Masone

I was walking around my mom's house taking photos for fun as well as the contest. Upon returning to go inside, I discovered I accidentally locked myself out of the house and had to wait another hour before anyone was coming home to let me back in. While I waited, I sat on the patio and started taking pictures of the ants running around. They're really hard to take clear shots of - being that close you have to get them lined up perfectly in the lens. I took a few of the ant hill, but I really like the simplicity of this shot. This was taken with my Canon T2i with my Sigma 28mm f/1.8 lens in the macro mode.

- Evan Hughes

The macro shooting contest could not have come at a better time. I was to attend a tournament for a miniature table top war game focused on World War 2, and I figured that since these are in the 15mm scale (or no taller than a US dime) why not shoot macro on something so tiny to see just how much detail one can put into these guys. I took a few different pictures in macro so find one I thought would stand out and so this shot in particular is of a tank commander for the French forces painted by a friend. Since I had no actual macro lens to speak of, I used the old trick of flipping around a lens to create a macro shot. For this I used a 24mm (2.0f) AF Nikkor mounted on a reverse mount ring to my Nikon D3100. It was shot in total manual mode at ISO 400 and 1/25s, in the post-production phase I did a little tweaking that I liked and thought made a few details pop a little better.

I hope you enjoy and thanks for looking!

- Chris

So I went out and purchased some new equipment for this challenge. I had not bought anything for my camera since I got it over a year ago and decided I could get something for this challenge so I wouldn't have to eat a whole can of pringles chips! After reading all the tutorials on macro photography I bought a set of extension tubes, a reversing ring and a shutter remote. The reversing ring was the wrong size so I had to go with the extension tubes only.
This challenge turned to be incredibly difficult. I originally intended to take a picture of a flower but shooting so close up outside was too hard. The flowers kept moving and I couldn't get anything in focus. I took a lot of great photos that I really like and I ended up really enjoying macro photography. I think I will continue to work on more photos in this area.
My submission is a shot of an ornamental strawberry that I picked from my backyard and brought inside to photograph. Since I used the extension tubes, I don't know what many of my technical aspects are for the shot but I set the focal length to f/11 because I knew with the tubes, I needed more light to get in to the lens to hit the sensor.
I think the strawberry ended up looking like a bunch of red ants on a ball! Kind of crazy!
Thanks for the challenge.

ISO 250

- Matthew Johnson

Hi there,

I've been told by family that this entry fits more into the "abstract" category than the "macro" category, but its the only decent shot I was able to take all weekend and I really wanted to enter something! I never realized that the real challenge of macro photography was finding a suitable subject! I finally decided that I was more likely to impress a bunch of gadget geeks with a gadget picture, so here we are ;)

The image you are looking at is actually a shot of my 46" Panasonic Plasma TV set. The green "Matrix lines" are from a color spectrum image I found online. I thought it would be cool to capture a Matrix style image using nothing but the pixels of the TV.

Shot with a Canon T2i with a 50mm f/2.5 compact macro lens at ISO800, f/16 and 1/45. I balanced the Camera on a stack of Blurays discs to try to keep it steady. The image has only been straightened with iPhoto and has no other corrections or modifications done to it.

I hope you like it, even if it isn't your "typical" macro shot!


- Aaron

Best part about this weeks contest was learning a new method of shooting that I'm going to keep using for a long time. As I did not have a dedicated macro lens, I made a reversing ring out of a body cap and cheap UV filter so that I could use my kit lens reversed. I had a lot of fun taking pictures of everything that I could get my hands on. This may persuade me to purchase an actual macro lens sometime in the future. Canon Rebel T2i, reversed 18-55mm,1/60th, ISO 200. No post-editing other than cropping.

- Chris Morey

Allergies Please
These giant dandelions are pretty but evil! My nose is still stuffy from this adventure. This one was the only survivor in a small group of them, the others dead and wilted around it. Having a Nikon, I cannot flip the lenses or use macro tubes without having to hold the aperture open (which scares me a little!) So for now I have a really cool macro lens attachment kit. Shot with a Nikon d3000 in close up mode with a +10 macro lens attachment, ISO 100, 20mm, f/8.0 1/320 sec.

- Leslie Renee

so I went around to a number of places to find a good subject for the macro contest. surely, I'd find something that would be interesting and not a bug of some sort. I took pix of flowers, sculpture details, a pretty grody-looking fountain and yes, a few bugs. I also tossed on a combo of 2x, 4x and 10x diopters to get super-close to everything I shot. after some post on all the pix, I really didn't like any of them (except, *sigh*, one bug which I almost submitted). so I looked around the house for something that might be more interesting and very unlikely someone else would send in. therefore, I present to you: yasai fumi furikake rice seasoning....

Exif data

Camera Nikon D3000
Exposure 0.008 sec (1/125)
Aperture f/5.6
Focal Length 55 mm
ISO Speed 100
Exposure Bias 0 EV
Flash On, Return detected
X-Resolution 1
Y-Resolution 1
Date and Time (Modified) 2011:05:15 21:49:58
YCbCr Positioning Centered
Exposure Program Unknown (0)
Date and Time (Original) 2011:05:15 20:35:40.00-07:00
Date and Time (Digitized) 2011:05:15 20:35:40
Max Aperture Value 5.7
Subject Distance 0.28 m
Metering Mode Multi-segment
Light Source Unknown
Sub Sec Time Original 00
Sub Sec Time Digitized 00
Color Space Uncalibrated
Sensing Method One-chip color area
CFAPattern [Green,Blue][Red,Green]
Custom Rendered Normal
Exposure Mode Auto
White Balance Auto
Digital Zoom Ratio 1
Focal Length In35mm Format 82 mm
Scene Capture Type Standard
Gain Control None
Contrast Normal
Saturation Normal
Sharpness Normal
Subject Distance Range
Compression JPEG (old-style)
XMPToolkit Image::ExifTool 8.18
Image Number 28968
Lens 18.0-55.0 mm f/3.5-5.6
Lens ID 154
Flash Function
Flash Mode On
Flash Red Eye Mode False
Flash Return Return detected

- Bob Zimway

Nikon D7000; 105mm micro lens @f/9; 1/800s; a little levels, contrast and colour adjustment.


"I for one welcome our new insect overlords"
The timing of this challenge couldn't have been better as my new lens only arrived Monday. After a quick look around found an old cicada moulting and this was the result. Between the cobwebs, the uniform golden colour and slightly decomposed look I expected to see something explode from its chest at any moment. Sadly it didn't happen and no tiny Ripley running around either!

- Tom Wood

"Please don't show this to Darth..."

I love macro photography, so when I heard Giz was having a "macro" photo challenge, I knew I had to enter. First, I grabbed everything mini I could find and headed out into the world. I took a number of shots in and around Santa Cruz, California, but this candid portrait of two stormtroopers getting their photos taken was a shoe in. I really strived to make the 5" tall action figures look life-sized by shooting low with shallow focus. Minor color editing was done in post and I added a flash/lens flare in Photoshop. Oh, and if you were wondering, yes, that is Admiral Ackbar taking the shot. Canon 5D Mark II, Nikkor 55mm, 1/250, f/5.6, ISO 160, 580EX flash fired.

- Doug Smith

Canon 40D
Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM
Kenko Extension Tubes
Aperture Priority - 1/13 sec @ F22
Slight sharpening, contrast and color correction done in Canon Digital Photo Professional.
Resized in Photoshop Elements 6


This is a photo of water droplets on a double flowering tulip in front of my house a little before sunset. I used a tripod to stabilize the camera due to the small aperture and slow shutter speed. I wanted to get as much depth of field as possible. I used a spray bottle to apply the water droplets and then tried to find an interesting composition with a splash of color. I love how the sunlight goes in the right side of each droplet as a small pinhole of light and then is refracted out the left side of each droplet.

- Doug Peterson

Taken on an Olympus E-620 with a Sigma 105mm f2.8 Macro at f2.8, 1/160s shutter, ISO 800.


I love macro photography and for a while I'd been wanting to try taking a closeup that filled the whole frame with just texture. I decided to take some aluminium foil, crinkle it up and unfold it to get this shot. I pulled up my window blinds to get some light on the foil and and opened the aperture to close up the depth of field.

- Mike Kouxommone

This was taken at the rose gardens in Piedmont CA. It was taken with a Nikon D90, AF-S Micro Nikkor 60mm lens 1/160s F/300 and ISO 200.

- Tatiana Ortega

Hi Mark,

This was taken at the rose gardens in Piedmont CA. Tatiana and I went through the rose garden trading off the same camera on our photo safari. It was a nice day out in the sun enjoying time together.


This was taken with a Nikon D90, AF-S Micro Nikkor 60mm lens 1/200s F/14 ISO 200.

Thank you,

- Rob


One of the plants in my garden is taken over by lice. But yesterday, this guy came to the rescue (and brought a few friends along too).
Instead of actively hunting for the lice (which are covering the bottom side of the leaves), they patiently wait on top of the leaves until one silly louse comes in their direction. Then, in a few seconds, it's all over for the louse.


I used a Nikon D700 with a 105 mm micro lens. Because the lady bugs are so tiny, I used an extension ring, to boost the magnification to 1,25:1
I also used a flash, which I dimmed to avoid too much reflection in the shield.
Camera settings were F16, ISO320, 1/100 sec
In Photo Shop, I cut out 2560 x 1900 of the original
I used auto-contrast in Photoshop, which I then dimmed to 65%.
Then I made a 970px resized copy
I ‘smart sharpened' the 2560 image a tad with ‘lens blur', 102% and 0,7 pixels
I ‘smart sharpened' the 970 image a tad with ‘lens blur', 102% and 0,2 pixels

Enjoy the viewing of all the submissions!


- Hans

Shot on a rebel t2i with 580 EXII and medium sized beauty dish. I was thinking of different subjects all week for this challenge,I wanted something very simple. This is what I found. This green was from a salad mix from fresh and easy.

Light room editing for BW.

- Jordan Dunn

This is a macro shot of one of the tubes for my CR Developments Romulus tube amp. The shot was taken with my Canon 40D with my Lens Baby Composer with the 4x and 10x macro adaptors and the f22 aperture disc. The image was exposed for 2.5 seconds at ISO 500. This shot was rather difficult to take as the f22 aperture disc meant very little light would get through to the viewfinder. I had to shine a flash light on the subject while composing the shot just to see what I was doing.

- Ryan Kane

My Lucky Cat desk toy in a mini zen garden. I had my camera on a tripod with a flash on sync cord, which I held directly above the subject. For scale reference, the cat is 1.75" tall. And yes, the face is cracked. It was like that when my friend gave it to me. Hopefully that won't have any averse effects on my luck.
Canon 7D, Tamron 90mm Macro, 1/250 at f/13, 100 ISO, Vivitar flash at 1/16 power

- Angelico Tolentino

Bon appétit

I was cooking over the weekend when the idea to draw a smiley on a yellow lentil struck me. I immediately took out a pen drew a smiley and used my $10 pringles setup for macro photography. Since the backgound was not so vivid, I decided to place the single lentil on a plate of paprika powder. The hardest challenge was to make this single lentil stand up in a mound of paprika powder and take a picture close enough without sneezing. I had to order food to go that day but the picture was well worth it.


Camera - Canon T2i
Home made macro lens using 50 mm Canon lens.
Edited using Adobe Photoshop.

- Archana Kannan

For this shooting challenge I used a set of magnetic buckyballs, which I keep at my desk to keep me occupied at times. I have always found them mesmerizing, particularly their many reflections off of each other in this cylindrical shape as you can see in this photo. To get some of the effects I wanted for this shot I shined a flashlight through the cylinder to create a bokeh type effect and better illuminate the reflections seen within the magnetic balls.


The shot was taken with my Canon S95, ISO 80, f/2, 1/60 sec., and a focal length of 6mm.

Thank you,

- Lysle Turnbeaugh

Camera: Canon PowerShot SD1300 IS

ISO: 80
Shutter: 1/1250

I decided to tackle this Giz Shooting Challenge because macro photography is a favorite of mine. I spent the better part of a sunny Saturday trying to find some suitable subjects for this shot, and of course I came home without so much as a decent flower shot. So I started snapping a few pics around the house, and thought it might be interesting to take a cool blown out shot of the inside of my desk lamp, and what do ya know? Thanks to the auto-exposure of my simple point-and-shoot, I got a nicely exposed and sharp photo of my incredibly bright lightbulb. Success was a few feet from where I started the challenge, figures.

- Spencer Wilde

I was sitting at my desk Sunday night thinking "damn another shooting challenge I missed" but I picked up my camera and shot stuff at my desk. This is just a wooden necklace. I used the reverse lens technique to get the macro, where you turn the lens around and use the rear elements as front elements. Nikon D7000 50mm f/1.8 ISO 320 1/60

- Aman Singh

Canon Digital Rebel XTi
Canon Macro Lens EF 100mm
f/2.8, 1/100 second
Macro Ring Lite MR-14EX


Coincidentally, I chose to rent out a macro lens and ring flash this week from school which worked out perfectly for this shooting challenge. This shot was made more difficult than it normally would be because I took this shot myself using a tripod and tethered capture software on my computer. I would take a burst of pictures while moving my head slowly closer and farther from the camera and then (while trying not to move) review the pictures on my computer to figure out how close I was to the correct position. After many attempts I got this shot which was focused correctly and captured the ring flash pretty much in the center of my pupil. I've always wanted a macro shot of my eye and it's interesting to see the nuances of my iris.

- Sean Gottschalk

(T1i, Canon 100mm Macro, f/3.5, 1/100,ISO 400,) I had just setup my tripod so I could take some shots of the rusty fire hydrant in front of my house and spotted this little guy. He was running so fast it was almost impossible to keep him in frame.

- Nick Ehrmann

My dad, brother and I went out exploring the other day. We found ourselves in an antique shop and my dad found this intense looking dragon. It doesn't really go with his extensive collection of jazz men but I didn't give him too much grief about it because I figured it would make for some cool pictures. Luckily this week's contest was macro. I set up my camera on a table and used a long exposure to attempt to capture the dragon doing it's fire thing. It didn't quite turn out how I pictured it but it's still an interesting shot.

Canon T2i
18-135 lens
10 Exposure
ISO 100
f 5.6

- Jay Johnson

I don't have a macro lens so I used the double lens method. Originally I thought taking a picture of an eye would be interesting. I soon realized that one needs a lot of light (i.e. the flash) when using this double lens method. My wife wasn't too fond of the flash going off right next to her eye so I resorted to taking the tripod out and using a mirror and my camera's live view mode to take a few pictures of my own eye. Even with this trick it was very difficult since the camera was struggling to auto focus and I was trying to get the lens reflection centered in my eye just right. No photoshop, just tweaking of the color.

Pentax k-x with kit 18-55mm and smc pentax-a 50mm f/1.7

- Shawn Nicholas

Hi there,

First a disclaimer - I've absolutely been passionate about macro photography since I was a kid. Unfortunately growing up I left the hobby behind me for about 20 years and am now just getting back. Since this is my first entry into the shooting challenge, I was looking for a subject that would be memorable — at least to me. I settled on my favorite pen, a Monteverde I acquired some time ago. I've been fascinated by the details of these instruments since I first saw my grandfather using one in the 1950's.


What better excuse did I need to go shopping for a Nikkor macro lens for my D7000? No luck, however, came my way as no one local had the new 85mm in stock. I ended up using my older Sony HDR-SR11 HandyCam in picture mode at 10.2 MP.

Shot after shot, I wasn't happy - until I applied a light pencil sketch. It seemed somehow appropriate to pencil a pen. (groan)

Exif below:
Date Created: 5/15/2011 11:43:48 PM
Date Modified: 5/15/2011 11:25:10 PM
File Size: 1.50 MB
Image Size: 3680 x 2760
File Info 2
Date Shot: 5/15/2011 23:25:11
Camera Info
Device: HDR-SR11
Focal Length: 11.8mm
Aperture: F/2
Shutter Speed: 1/30s
Exposure Mode: Programmed Auto
Exposure Comp.: 0EV

- John Stroud

Camera: Nikon D90
Lens: AFS Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G
More: Nikon BR-2A Reverse Ring Adapter
Settings: ISO-100, f/?, 1/125s, Manual Flash Mode
Story: Read about the contest on Gizmodo, and was absolutely thrilled that finally I was going to get a chance to play around with some macro photography. So I headed out into the garden, straight to the most bug-infested spot, and looked around. Spotted this fly sitting on a petal, completely still, and took the opportunity to get the shot. Desaturated everything but blues and purples in Adobe Camera Raw as Post-Processing.

- Salman Arif

Shot with a Canon T3i using a 70-300mm lens (at 300mm) with a Raynox
250 (2.5x magnification) lens attachment at f45.
I had originally wanted to get a shot of my cat's eye (beautiful
colors), but she absolutely wasn't cooperating... The next organic
object that caught my attention was a dead leaf, as I liked the
intricate vein patterns, but then I noticed a dead leaf right next to
a fully green one, and the contrast in colors & patterns caught my

- Eric Kornblum

Nikon D200 24–70 2.8–3.5 Micro-Nikkor Manual Focus.
Shot it at 70mm Macro setting, f8 at 1/15.
I was bummed I don't have a good macro. Only an old manual focus. It also had been raining here. Went out anyway and decided to go out, stumbled upon this grass and this table and hopefully made a winner.

- Vince Wilcox


"Strawberry and Milk" - a slice of strawberry with condensed milk in a white bowl at my deck.

Camera: iPhone 3Gs
Lens: Close-Up Lens for phone camera
App: Photoshop Express


- Nathaniel Abuan

I took this shot over the weekend after taking a hundred shots of some disturbing insects. On saturday it rained for several hours, and afterwards before it started getting dark I thought I'd give my macro lens one last chance to shine and went out to the porch. This is a picture of a hanging plant. I call it "The beauty after the storm". The world always looks a little better after it's been cleaned off. It was taken with my Sony A55 with a 100 mm f2.8 macro lens that I borrowed from a friend. Exposure was 1/25 of a sec at f /11. ISO was set to 200.

Thank you and I hope you'll accept my late submission.

- Daniel Koch

There's a really simple story behind this picture. I just got home from college, and my mom (the best cook in the world) wanted to make me a home cooked meal like she always used to. She decided to make tacos, one of my personal favorites. Everyone knows you can't have tacos without guacamole, so I snapped this picture of an avocado as she was preparing it. This was shot with a Nikon D300, Micro-Nikkor 60mm at f/3.5 ISO 1000, at 1/200th of a second.

- Jimmy Jorgensen

Enclosed you will find my entries for the Macro Shooting Challenge...

The enclosed image "Spray Face 1" is the result of shooting a section of a spray paint can that had been run over in the street. When I first spotted the can I was drawn to the glass ball that had pierced through the can and how much it resembled an eye socket. I then copied the section of the can and flipped it to complete the face...


P.S. The glass ball is what rattles around in the can when you shake a can of spray paint...

Camera: Nikon FM 55mm Macro Film: Fuji Velvia 50

- Gary Stubelick

I've been inspired recently by some photographic illusions, so I wanted to try my hand at it. This shot was not photoshopped (except for typical white balancing and cropping).

nikon d5000, stock lens
f9, 1/120, iso 200

- dee m'lee