Five Common Macro Photography Mistakes and How to Fix Them

Macro photography requires a unique set of skills, but along with these skills comes a new set of mistakes to overcome. Fortunately, many of these macro photography mistakes are easily fixed.

In this article, I discuss five common mistakes made in macro photography. Then I give you the tools to correct them in the field, which will result in instantly better macro images.

1. Shooting in direct midday sunlight

The first mistake often made in macro photography is heading out when the sun is high in the sky (midday). While the light during this time is bright, it’s also very harsh and contrasty. Images taken at this time are difficult to expose well, and colors are far less saturated.

The angle of the sun causes additional problems. It beats directly down on your subject, causing the underside to become shadowy.

How can this problem be fixed?

You have a few options. First, try waiting until the evening, when the light is warm and soft. This will reduce contrast and light your subject more evenly. You could also cast a shadow on the subject yourself, or find a subject in the shade. This will reduce the extent to which your subject encounters the harsh and contrasty light.

Cloudy days are the third option. Then, the sky acts like a huge softbox, and the light is diffused across the subject.

If you do decide to go out in midday, you might consider bringing a flash or a reflector to add some punch to your images and reduce midday shadows. While this won’t negate the problems described above, it will reduce them.

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