The post title comes from a question that I got on the image above today.

My macro shots have a large following on my Flickr page & I get quite a few questions on how I stage my shots.

Most recently, most questions that I’ve received are in regards to how I light my photos. Like:

“Hi Mr. Tafari,

I’m a new big fan of your macro shots, they are all amazingly beautiful. I just got into macro photography recently and planning to shoot more macro than others. Do you use flash for any of your macro shots?”

When I get these questions, I am 1st flattered & 2nd happy to help others learn what I taught myself through trial & error with success. 

My answer to the question above:

“I NEVER use flash when I do macros. I prefer to use natural light to preserve the realness of my subject(s). Therefore, I either shoot in the morning or in the early evening when the lighting is just right. 

Depending on the light, I may use a tripod to get the best lighting for & sharpness for my exposure. Lastly, I always shoot with my aperture wide open & keep my ISO at the lowest setting (100-200).

If you are shooting with a Nikon, I suggest checking out the:

NIKKOR AF-S VR Micro 105mm f/2.8G
Lenbabies 3G or Control Freak with the macro kit

If you have any other questions, feel free to contact me.”

One reason I am posting this kind out of the clear blue is because I went to a photography lecture give by famed photographer Michael Grecco last Thursday. As he was going through many of the photos that he captured over the years, I found myself increasingly jealous of his lighting skills. 

After the seminar, I was wondering how I could step my game up and during the drive home, I came up with a few things that I could do for certain. I also questioned my insatiable need of trying to be the best at all things I do artistically.

I guess for now, I will enjoy being someone else’s (not so paid & famous) Michael Grecco.