My (pitiful) spiders and butterflies.

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As Patrick mentioned in a post a few minutes ago, he and I went to the Huntsville Botanical Gardens today, and shot in the butterfly house. Patrick shot with Leigh's new 200 f4 micro, and I shot with Patrick's 90mm Tamron. The Tamron is a very good lens, but I had a hard time keeping up with the new 200 micro. I even thought about not even posting mine, they are so poor by comparison.

I decided to go ahead and post, more to illustrate how these lenses perform when used by not great, but decent photographers in a real world shooting environment. We didn't shoot exactly the same subjects, but we did both shoot one butterfly and one spider. Here are mine from the Tamron 90.

Butterfly:
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Spider:
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Several shots of one more butterfly that was not shot by both of us:
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Glad you posted, Frank...I was wondering if you would. Thanks for playing w/Patrick today. He really needed the time out and away from everything. I think your last shot is my favorite, but all are well done as usual though.
 
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Frank,

I think the first two images are especially amazing! The detail of the spider is very scary! Yikes! Considering how fast butterflies move (and I know that for a fact) I think your outing with the 90mm was successful. If you haven't already invested in a monopod, I highly recommend the Bogen 680 compact monopod and 3D ball head. I am looking forward to samples from your 180mm macro. :D
 

PGB

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Frank,

I think these are very good. That 90mm is a pretty good lens but its the photog that makes the shot. I especially like the spider and the Zebra Swallotails with the nectar on their nectar straw, for lack of the correct term. HARRY, HELP, what is it called!

Regards,
 
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Hey - those look like the same bugs as Patrick shot. Except for the milk drinker - wow. I've never seen anything like that. You should check with biology text companies. That may be a saleable shot!
 
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Frank your picture are very nice. One difference I see between Patrick and your pictures is the grain (noise) structure is very different. Did both of you use the same camera?
 
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Frank,
Don't know how you can get much better on the shots you took. The spider looks outstanding to me with the web detail you captured.
Neil
 
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Thanks everyone for the nice words.

Gilles, I shot with my D2H and Patrick with his D2X. That may explain one of the reasons his looked so better, but I think it was primarily the difference between the 200 micro and the Tamron 90. I can't complain though, since Patrick was nice enough to loan me his lens. 8)
 
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Frank by what I have seen so far of pictures coming from the 200 micro are really very good.

I was using the PC85 micro since I have the D2X, yesterday I switched to the VR70-200 both lens produce very nice photos but I found that the PC85 seem to have more contrast, both lens were used with the contrast in the camera to contrast (-).
 
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Gilles said:
Frank by what I have seen so far of pictures coming from the 200 micro are really very good.

I was using the PC85 micro since I have the D2X, yesterday I switched to the VR70-200 both lens produce very nice photos but I found that the PC85 seem to have more contrast, both lens were used with the contrast in the camera to contrast (-).
Gilles,

I definitely like the 70-200VR, and with all of the great comments coming from you, Bjorn, and others on the 85PC I'm very tempted by Regit's offer over on the For Sale forum. I'm just not sure that 85mm is long enough for the kind of shooting that I enjoy.

BTW, I also set my contrast on the lowest setting in the D2H, and use the LCH editor in NC and Curves in PS CS to bump up the contrast a tad if needed. I believe that I get better overall rendition of the subject with this setting, and I feel like it helps disguise noise in darker regions of the image better.

Thanks again for the feedback.
 
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Lovely pics, especially the spider.

Patrick Bramlett said:
HARRY, HELP, what is it called!
I am not very good at butterflies, but the first one is a Danaus (we call them monarchs over here). The spider is a Zebra spider (genus Argiope), the remaining ones I do not know, although they remind me remotely of some Heliconius, but there are others that imitate them because they are avoided by predators.
Cheers
 
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Very well done Frank, and they are hard to find not moving about. Could you do me a favor? Clean that big goober off your sensor!!!
 
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*LOL* Baywing, I was just about to post that exact same message - same wording too!! LOL

Great pics Frank, very sharp. Nice to see the Monarch (#1) which are very plentiful here in Ontario all summer long. We'll be sending them south to Mexico in a few months for wintering.

Nice spider shot too! Great DOF on that one.
 
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Baywing said:
Very well done Frank, and they are hard to find not moving about. Could you do me a favor? Clean that big goober off your sensor!!!
Bay,

Yes, I'll clean it. I just noticed it while processing these shots. :roll:
 
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The 1st. butterfly is Danaus plexippus.
The Spider is an Argiope species. Signature spider.
The Heliconidae Butterfly is somewhat difficult to pinpoint from the underwing only. Interesting species that is one of the only butterflies that can store its food in a pouch similar to a bird's crop.

BW. Bob F.
 
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Beautiful shots Frank, didnt know you like to dable in macro work. Personally I think your sandbagging. LOL.........very nice images ;-)
Well done my friend!!

How was the lighting in the gardens?? I take it that 200mm micro was the AF version, urghhhhhh
 
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Keith,

I'm fairly new at this kind of shooting, but I'm enjoying it tremendously. The lens Patrick was using is the 200 f4 AF. I shot with it last Thursday and it is very good. I'm checking out Crystall's Tamron 180 macro lens right now. It suits my current budget much better than the 200. :roll:
 

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