PDA

View Full Version : Making my 35mm more usable with a hood diffuser thingie



Jamie
01-01-2007, 10:54 PM
Hey everyone, I know that I have not been posting much lately, been busy doing holiday family things with my girlfriend's family.
Here is a cool little experiment I did to see if I could make my 35mm Macro lens more usable at the 1:1 magnification.
I had found that on my E-500 with it's built-in flash, the lens barrel extending (to focus) (http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/gallery/2025662/1/105829154/Medium) obscures the light from the flash when at any magnification higher than 1:2

http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/104965157-O.jpg

Anyway, my girlfriend got me a cool photography book called Close-up & Macro by Robert Thompson, and in this book, he shows a few contraptions & techniques for getting better use of a flash when only a few inches or less from the subject... anyway, I decided to get some cardboard, tape, a wire clothes hanger and some aluminum foil and see if I could make my 35mm compatible with the built in flash at such close magnifications.

I created a hood over the built in flash, lined it with foil, and used a translucent art paper I had laying around for the front diffuser. I am more than pleased with the results!

Here are 2 shots of the device:
http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120445638-S.jpg (http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120445638-L.jpg) http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120445617-S.jpg (http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120445617-L.jpg)
The curved part is a section of hanger wire and it sits atop the lens barrel.
The rubber band simply holds the thing on the lens and loops underneath.
The narrow end just rests on top of the flash.Here are my results with a simple setup of my girlfriend's makeup compact and a blue stone. The shots are F11 1/125s and shot in M with Manual Focus dialed in.

With the Diffuser Hood:
http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120445375-S.jpg (http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120445375-L.jpg)

Without:
http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120445442-S.jpg (http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120445442-L.jpg)

Flash off and exposure adjusted to 15s:
http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120445530-S.jpg (http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120445530-L.jpg)

Overview of the Setup:
http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120445594-S.jpg
http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120445572-S.jpg

The most exciting thing about this setup for me is that I can get shots that were previously impossible for me; example: A bit of the hair on my knee twisted: (handheld even! :shock:)
ISO 100, f10, 1/80 sec
http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120447539-M.jpg (http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120447539-O.jpg)
Click for Original

I know that I would get similar results from a FL-35, but Photogrpahy for me is just a hobby, and I can't justify spending too much on my E-System.
I hope you all enjoyed my rantings, and Happy New Year!

Jamie

bilzmale
01-02-2007, 02:06 AM
Very interesting - thanks for taking the time to pass this on.

Henk Peter
01-02-2007, 06:58 AM
Good job Jamie, now who needs a ringflash?:evilgrin: Thanks for sharing.

Jamie
01-02-2007, 07:05 AM
Thanks for the feedback guys,
After looking at the design a bit closer, an idea came to me while falling asleep last night. If I use a flat style rubberband, and fix it halfway between the wire hanger arch and the popup flash, I am sure that it would be more stable while on the camera.

Hokuto
01-02-2007, 09:24 AM
Very nice idea. I'd like to see some more detailed plans.

Johnmcl7
01-02-2007, 10:11 AM
Wow, that picture of the hair is amazing!

John

BL3
01-02-2007, 12:25 PM
Jamie: Cool! I love these homemade things. Have you checked out the "starving student's off-camera flash rig" at the Strobist site? If not, you can build a pretty good flash setup for minimal bucks, there's actually a tutorial that takes you step by step towards acquiring and using off-camera flash, which I think is much more effective than hotshoe flash. Anyway, here's the link:

http://strobist.blogspot.com/

Rocky

Jamie
01-02-2007, 03:17 PM
Thanks for the comments and feedback everyone, and thanks for the strobist link Rocky.

Hokuto, i'm not sure that I really have any more detailed plans... the curved bit is where the bent wire is, and it just rests on top of the lens barrel, while the rubber band gently holds it in place. The top panel is coated in aluminum foil for reflectivity.

Jamie

Jamie
01-29-2007, 12:58 PM
I put together a little animation of the design. I'm sure it will clear up any confusion on how it's constructed. I don't think the dimensions are important especially since we all use different cameras, and I only have access to my E-500.

Link to Video (http://www.jamie3d.com/downloadable_files/flash_diffuser-h264.mov)

And yes... that's an E-500 with the 50mm f2 mounted on it.

Hokuto
01-29-2007, 08:40 PM
Very nicely done, thanks!

MQuinn
01-29-2007, 09:12 PM
Very cool Jamie! This will make the 35mm able to go so much closer! Got to build one of these this weekend.

OzRay
01-29-2007, 09:52 PM
The most exciting thing about this setup for me is that I can get shots that were previously impossible for me; example: A bit of the hair on my knee twisted: (handheld even! :shock:)
ISO 100, f10, 1/80 sec
http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120447539-M.jpg (http://jamiehs.smugmug.com/photos/120447539-O.jpg)
Click for Original

Jamie

Man, that's one hairy knee! :smile:

Cheers

Ray

Jamie
01-29-2007, 10:17 PM
Man, that's one hairy knee! :smile:

Cheers

Ray

Yea... runs in the family. I think my ancestors were bears. Or they drank lots of beer, either way, they are all hairy. ;)

Something to note about this setup; It increases the light falloff, so you need to boost the Flash Compensation if you move more than 4 feet or so away from the subject. Any more distance than that and it will underexpose unless checked.

Luke
01-30-2007, 12:04 PM
I do like such home made solutions. Thank you for sharing, Jamie.
Great 3D animation too.
Luc

windsprite
01-30-2007, 09:26 PM
I'm afraid I can't view the video for some reason, but your diffuser is really cool, Jamie! I want to give it a try.

A few months ago I made something similar to "bounce" my popup flash (not for macros, but for general shooting). Even on my compact digicam, I can't tell the difference between results from the popup and my bounced FL-36. Maybe I'll post my contraption soon. I love photography DIY projects that don't involve fuses and wires and such.

Thanks for posting,

Julie

tspore
01-31-2007, 12:46 AM
Wow that animation rocks. Great going!!!

Jamie
01-31-2007, 06:43 AM
I'm afraid I can't view the video for some reason,
Julie
I forgot to mention that I compressed it in a format that needs Quicktime 7, sorry.


Wow that animation rocks. Great going!!!
Thanks Tony, it's just something I threw together.

Jamie

Henk Peter
01-31-2007, 11:07 AM
Neat animation Jamie! Did you model the E-500 all by hand?
Thanks for sharing.

Jamie
12-06-2007, 05:49 PM
Neat animation Jamie! Did you model the E-500 all by hand?
Thanks for sharing.

Yes I did, It's just something I put together very quickly. I only made it detailed enough to establish that it was an E-500.

Cheers,
Jamie