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Discussion in 'Through the Lens' started by Profkrakatoa, Dec 8, 2007.

  1. Profkrakatoa

    Profkrakatoa Arachnoknight Old Timer

    Is it possible to get good tarantula pictures with a "point and shoot" digital camera?

    I'm a very novice picture taker - mainly just taking pictures of my students doing labs to post on my school web page. I have a Canon Power Shot A560 with a 4x optical zoom and 7.1 megapixels.

    Here is the "best" picture I've been able to get of Boris - but this is when I first got him and he wasn't at ease. (BTW--he's NOT on the bark anymore!)
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2008
  2. Yes it is very possible. Most point and shoots these days have a build in macro mode. On the little spin dial (which should be on the top left of the camera) it will have a picture of a little flower. Turn the dial to that. I know the powershot has it I use them at work.

    It's a limited macro mode. But it will let you get a bit closer then on the regular auto mode, and I have seen some great pics come from them.
  3. Tunedbeat

    Tunedbeat Arachnolord Old Timer

    I've seen alot of good stuff done with just a simple P&S.
    The camera has little to do with taking a good picture, it's mainly the photographer. Take a look at this gallery, Techuser is one of fav. on Flickr. Everything he's done, is done with a P&S.
  4. Profkrakatoa

    Profkrakatoa Arachnoknight Old Timer

    Thanks!! I just went and checked my camera - it's not on the spin dial, but I found it on the function wheel next to the digital display. I took a few pictures of Boris and Natasha and I'll upload them to a picture thread tomorrow! :)
  5. Ted

    Ted Arachnoprince

    theres no way hes taking those pics with a simple point and shoot.
    i have had many good point and shoot digitals tried every setting,distance,lighting,exposure,angle, etc and they wont take a picture from several inches away..like are in his pics.
    if you take a pic from closer than a foot and a half away it looks horrible, even on macro.
  6. Nope it really is a point and shoot. In the photo details it states he is using the PowerShot A510. Classic 3.2 Megapixels point and shoot camera.
  7. Cheshire

    Cheshire Arachnoking Old Timer

    I use a Kodak z740.

    I think my photos turn out pretty well.

    Most point and shoot cameras nowadays have something called a PASM mode where you can adjust the settings.

    I just set mine on macro, take about 300 to 400 pictures and post the best out of the bunch.
  8. Ted

    Ted Arachnoprince

    oh..well that PowerShot A510 is twice as good as my digital cameras..that might explain it.
    mine doesn't have adjustable settings or any way to sharpen focus.
    anything shot closer than 18 inches will look like crap.:(
  9. Ted

    Ted Arachnoprince

    true..they do turn out pretty well..i think yours and mine are similar quality.

    however, i dont think our cameras will take pics like THIS


    this is as close as mine can get..notice the complete lack of focus, detail, or nuance.
    at this distance it will only focus on things farther away.

    Last edited: Dec 8, 2007
  10. miarachnids

    miarachnids Arachnoknight Arachnosupporter


    This is the best pic i have taken with my powershot A520

    Attached Files:

  11. I agree, for a point and shoot your photo thread is really good.
    PASM mode?? I am not familiar with that, what is that?

    For you when you take pics you just have to make sure you are not closer then your camera will allow. Your picture there would have been really good if you just backed it up to the minimal focal distance.
  12. funnylori

    funnylori Arachnobaron

    This was taken with a point and shoot on macro mode with flash. Flash on point and shoots is annoying, but it is possible to get great shots. Part of it is having good settings, good ambient light, and the other part is getting the camera to focus on what you want.

    Try framing your pictures differently. Take photos from different angles. If you get on the same level of the tarantula, you can get some amazing photos.

  13. Tunedbeat

    Tunedbeat Arachnolord Old Timer

    He explains how he achieved those shots here.
  14. imjim

    imjim Arachnoknight

    Most of the current Canon cameras have great macro capabilities. I photographed flowers with macro last spring with a SD1000 Elph. I also have a Canon G7 which takes excellent macro photographs but any of the lesser current PowerShot line will do the same.

    Now I am using a Canon SLR with EF 100mm macro lens; because of choice not necessity. I think the biggest challege is lighting, position and opportunity when photographing insects and tarantulas.




    Last edited: Dec 9, 2007
  15. Ted

    Ted Arachnoprince

    my minimal focal distance is 18 inches.
    thats why i cant get closeup shots..it just wont focus.
  16. Ted

    Ted Arachnoprince

    i dont see any explanation anywhere.:?
  17. Cheshire

    Cheshire Arachnoking Old Timer

    I think they will...if you program the camera right.

    Ryan...this is the PASM mode as I understand it:

    P-Auto Program...essentially the 'Auto' mode where you can adjust settings

    A-Aperature priority...allows you to set the aperature but leaves the shutter speed automatic

    S-Shutter speed...the opposite of the aperature priority mode. Allows you to set the shutter speed, but leaves the aperature automatic

    M-Manual...full on manual, lets you adjust any setting.

    I haven't had the time or patience to mess with those settings yet. I generally mess with lighting instead.


    During my last photoshoot, I think I figured out what my camera focuses on automatically, so I *think* I can get it to focus on exactly what I want.

    I just use the auto mode with the macro function. Have you figured this out yet?

    If you haven't, look for a flower.

    I think with enough time and patience, you could theoretically get the type of photos Techuser takes.

    Incidentally, I think the type of camera Techuser uses is the same camera that my Wal*Mart uses for the photolab's 'store use camera'.
  18. Ted

    Ted Arachnoprince

    yeah..I am using the only macro setting it has..sadly there are no adjustments for this setting..it wont focus on anything within a foot...so no closeups for me.:(
  19. Cheshire

    Cheshire Arachnoking Old Timer

    Does it show you what you're focusing on?

    Some macro modes suck...some are great.

    The Sony DSC line (either the DSC W30 or DSC W55 is what I experimented with...it was the 7 megapixel model) can focus on the wire inside of a twist-tie from about a centimeter away.
  20. Ted

    Ted Arachnoprince

    no..unfortunately it doesnt have any guides or frames.
    its a crappy digital..called a Digi-life DVC [6.6 Mpixels]

    i really need a good camera.

    the latter camera you mentioned sounds great!
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