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How-to: Fast focus stacking for food and drink photography

When you’re capturing close-ups or macro you incessantly in finding your self at f/16 and nonetheless no longer getting sufficient intensity of box. So that’s when focus stacking could be a truly useful gizmo. It sounds difficult and there are many in-depth tutorials telling you that you wish to have x,y and z particular apparatus to make it paintings.

But it if truth be told doesn’t should be that difficult, in particular in case you simply wish to get the entire of a pitcher in focus for instance. In this video, Joanie Simon from The Bite Shot presentations you how one can focus-stack beverages in an easy manner.

Joanie explains that she loves to {photograph} beverages from a three/4 viewpoint so to see the highest of the drink and additionally the aspect as neatly. It makes the ice and garnish truly stand out. This is also a ‘focus stacking made simple’ educational, alternatively, there are nonetheless a couple of issues that you simply completely must-have for this strategy to paintings.

Firstly, you wish to have a good tripod. That guarantees that all the photographs might be similar. Remember that it is just the purpose of focus that we’re shifting, the whole thing else should keep the similar. Similarly, a far flung shutter unencumber can even assist to keep away from any tiny actions of your camera whilst you press the button. The much less you contact the camera, the simpler.

To start you wish to have to set your focus at the entrance of the glass, that would be the level closest to you that you wish to have in focus. Some cameras if truth be told have a focus stacking mode that may assist with this – the Nikon Z7 has a ‘Focus Shift Mode’, and in a similar fashion the Canon R5 and R6 each have focus bracketing modes.

The selection of photographs you wish to have to take is determined by the topic, how shut you might be, and the aperture that you simply’re capturing with. Joanie suggests round 20 on this example, as she has selected an aperture of f/3.5 and needs the entire best of the glass to be in focus however not anything else. The more thing that she modifies is the time between each and every shot. She loves to get the photographs taken as briefly as conceivable on account of the character of capturing food and beverages. If there may be actual ice within the glass, for instance, that may begin to soften, food will begin to glance much less appetising and garnish will wilt. But, there’s one caveat: she is capturing with a strobe and so the recycle time does should be taken into consideration.

If you don’t have a posh camera that may routinely do focus stacking, there are two different choices: the usage of instrument like Helicon Focus and Helicon Remote, or simply doing it manually, which isn’t as difficult because it sounds. If you’re shifting the focus manually then simply be truly cautious to not bump the camera.

Again get started with the focus at the entrance fringe of the glass and take a shot. Gradually transfer the focus level again in opposition to the furthest fringe of the glass taking a shot each and every time. The smaller the increment the simpler.

Now for the post-processing. Joanie brings all her photographs into Lightroom, and does a fundamental edit, conserving all of the photographs synced in combination. Then she brings the photographs into Photoshop, ensuring to deliver them in as layers. She recommends the usage of auto-align to be sure that all of the photographs are coated up in addition to conceivable in case one thing shifted in camera. After that, return to the edit menu and make a choice ‘auto mix layers’ and then make a choice the ‘stack photographs’ choice.

That’s all the procedure, simple, and no longer a focus rail in sight!


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