The world is full of big things, everyone wants to go bigger whether it be buildings or sculptures. In our world, bigger has become better. Imagine a world where even the smallest details mattered. Veins of leaves, the wings of bees, or the smallest creases in the leather of a boot all have a chance to stand out and be visible to the "big world". Macro and close up photography allow this to be possible.
I will use a variety of close up filters as well as a macro lens to discover the hidden world of things tiny and minute. My primary subject for macro photography within the scope of this project will be nature and natural things. I will focus on the fine details of natural objects and attempt to show pattern where it exists. I will be avoiding anything that brings scale to the project. A lot of human identification of objects occurs with scale. I plan to take advantage of this psychological "deficiency" to give the viewer an opportunity to see the image in a very raw way and develop an opinion of the photo before identifying the subject. After each series of images with a single subject at macro range, I will also make an image farther from the subject, allowing the viewer an opportunity to "recover" from the closeness to the subject. In both the main images as well as the "overview" I will be using a short depth of field to draw focus to only the subject.
I selected this topic for the project because of numerous experimental images I have taken using some close up and macro techniques. I was inspired by the level of success I have had with those experiments. I have a personal connection to this topic through an aesthetic appreciation of fine detail and larger than life pictures.
My audience is anyone who enjoys nature photography or would like to see things closer. My biggest critics are my family and friends, and as a beginning artist they are the first audience of all of my work. At this stage in the development of my photography skills it is still important for me to consider my family as a relevant audience. I want my work to be something they will be proud to display. I have no preferred place for these images to be displayed at this time.
The research required involved numerous Google searches to find example images to help me decide on angles to use, as well as to determine some common subjects. In addition I have used several text resources from the Sloane Art library at UNC, including "Closeup shooting : a guide to closeup, tabletop, and macro photography" by Cyrill Harnischmacher.
I am new to the field of photography and do not have a lot of information about what other photographers work in macro and close up photography, but a little research led me to discover that the author of the text for this course, Jim Miotke has worked with macro nature photography. Ann Fischer Carol is also very active with macro photography, and is responsible for one of the few photography books dedicated completely to macro flower photographs. It seems to be a fairly popular form of photography, especially in the digital era.
The most common problem with macro photography is the requirement of a narrow aperture, which requires more light to correctly expose an image. The next most common problem is the short focus range. The closest it is possible to get with "common methodology" is about 4 inches from the subject. Using special lenses will both amplify the available light and allow closer focus. Extending the distance between the camera and the lens with an adapter tube will also result in a shorter focusing distance.
This project will be a rewarding challenge for me to work on. I am very excited about my topic and the possibilities that exist with working in such a "small world".
This is posted here because Flickr fucked up my original posting of this to the class discussion board.