Spring is FINALLY here and we’re all anxious to break out our cameras and capture the season’s beauty. But before you go ambush the local tulip bed, let’s step back and talk about some macro shooting basics. Taking the time to understand depth of field, macro shooting composition and proper lighting will result in some killer springtastic shots!

What is Macro?

Macro refers to taking video or pictures of very small things. Think about lady bugs, flower petals, worms…all of those spring time symbols that we love so much. Shooting macro footage is an artform in itself because you have to balance the technical aspects of the camera with the artistic beauty of nature. If done properly, the result can be absolutely astonishing. Check out this video that features some amazing macro video work:


Depth of Field

Depth of field is easily the greatest challenge that comes with shooting macro subjects. Your lens will limit how close you can get to the subject and what part of the subject will be in focus. You can manipulate your depth of field by adjusting your camera’s aperture. Your aperture is the opening of the lens. The smaller the opening, the greater depth of field you’ll have! However, the smaller the opening, the more light you’ll need as well. Again, it is all about balance!


We just mentioned the relationship between lighting and aperture. To shoot macro footage, you’ll need a lot of light because you have such a small opening in the lens. But you need to think about the direction and warmth of the light as well. Many macro videographers use a light ring around their lens to ensure that the subject itself is well lit. Others may concentrate more on diffusing strong lights as to not create glares on the subject. All in all, it depends on what and where you’re shooting. Just make sure to be mindful that light can make a huge impact on your macro shot!


Composing a macro shot is often way more difficult than composing a normal shot due to your focus restrictions. Even though your background will likely be blurred out, be mindful of the colors and lighting behind your subject. A contrast in colors can really take your shot from ordinary to extraordinary. And if you have to choose which parts of your subject are in and out of focus, always keep that rule of thirds in the back of your head.


Ready to go shoot some macro footage? Let us see what you’ve done! Share your video on our Video Blocks Facebook page. And if you’re looking for more information on cameras and lenses that work well for macro, check out this link. They have some great examples that will help you shoot macro in any price range.

And, as always, here’s some free stock footage from yours truly! Just click the button below to download your free stock footage clip.

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