Sunday, April 13, 2008

Ant Hathaway

Time To Adjust The Ant-tenna

Photographs copyright: DAVID McMAHON



Misty Dawn just told me about her Camera Critters challenge, where you have to post a shot of an animal each Sunday. This shot immediately came to mind. During the week I started using the brilliant new macro lens, the SMC Pentax-DA 1:2.8mm Macro Limited - and this was among the first shots I took with it.

I was out in the garden when I decided to experiment with some rosebuds. This rose is called First Love and the buds and blooms are smaller than many of the other roses in the back yard - so I figured it would be ideal for the new lens. I was bending over one of the branches when I noticed something black, deep in the interior folds of one of the buds.

I moved the camera aside and took a closer look, only to realise that there were not one but two ants wriggling around. My initial impulse was to get rid of the ants, but then my photography instincts took over. I immediately started shooting, but have you ever thought about how quickly ants wriggle? They just never stay still, so there I was contorting myself at various angles, trying to keep at least one of them in focus.

Bear in mind these are low-resolution versions, so a significant amount of clarity and detail have been lost. However, in the original high-resolution version, you can actually see the dark sheen on the little ant's body. But because I only had a split second to react and take this shot, I made a mistake. This cropped version (below) of the same frame is how I should have composed the shot.


Check out the rules at Camera Critters or go to Misty Dawn.

32 comments:

Deana said...

I love it. I have been practicing with my new Macro lens so I can appreciate capturing the ant unblurred! It is harder than people think getting in there and making a nice picture!

quilly said...

This little ant doesn't have to go to the giant's party ans sing, "Find Me Somebody to Love" because I already adore it!

Maggie May said...

What brilliant photos...... I like them both!
You will need to train some ants to do what you want & be where you want them to be. I'm sure that wouldn't be too difficult for you!

Akelamalu said...

Great shots David!

CrazyCath said...

That is brilliant! I have been practising with the macro on my new toy - which is not as good as that but is far better thank I have ever had. It's brill.

Love the ant against the pink. And nice to see even the experts get unintentional blurry bits! ;0)

i beati said...

"Macro Man Macro Man I wanna be a Macro Man" - a song made famous by the Village people hahahah-- Seriously - looks like he-she is coming out to talk ,probably about the ludicrous politics in the U. S. hahahah

Old Wom Tigley said...

Great post David.. loved the title... it reminds me that when Jane and I going to see our nieces and nephews it great to here then saying hello Uncle Tom and Anti Social..
I kid you not it took months to learn then to say it.. :O)

Sharon said...

This sounds like a fun challenge! The photo of the ant on the rose is so unique. It is fun to read how others try and try to get a picture. We are not alone in this. My husband thinks I'm crazy when I keep taking pictures of something then delete most of them. He does wait for me without complaining, just shakes his head.

Brian in Oxford said...

Usually a hand puppet or something will keep little critters from bouncing off the walls when you're trying to take their picture. Oh wait, that's children, not bugs. Never mind!

Sandi McBride said...

That is one beautiful ant...the rose "ain't" bad either!
Sandi

Misty Dawn said...

Oh David, this is perfect! Yes, I realize how much and how quickly the bugs and insects move. That's why I'm so proud of my dragonfly photos. I've been known to stand alongside the road and profess my gratitude to a dragonfly who held still long enough for me to take its photo ;-) The contrast of the black ant on the pink rose makes this photo all the more stunning. It looks like the ant came crawling out to wave hello and pose for the camera ;-)

Thank you SO much for joining Camera-Critters, David. It really means a lot to me!

lime said...

i certainly don't see any detrimental loss of clarity. wow! fabulous.

Charles Gramlich said...

Now that's a cool critter. Insie a flower.

Lana will love this meme and should find it easy to do. She's got lots of critter pics.

scrap chair potato said...

Oh, how I wish I could afford a good lens. That is an amazing photo. I also love your title--you are so clever. :)

BarnGoddess said...

good photo!

Mima said...

Great photo, and I'm quite glad to hear that even you have to crop sometimes - I am always really chuffed when I don't have to!! Love the detail on the ant, the pink of the beautiful rose really shows it to good effect.

K. alias Bear-Mom said...

wow how special...

Gretchen said...

That is a VERY good shot! I haven't worked enough with macro lenses, so now I have to get mine out and start!
Thanks for the kick in the butt!!

Lilli & Nevada said...

Oh that is a great shot of the ant, love it

John-Michael said...

Are you using an SLR or RF type of camera, David? You have me totally caught up in this! Magnificent images (both)! (If an SLR, I can imagine an "orientation" problem with your surroundings. [having never used one myself.(Old Graphlex 3X5 guy ... upside down image and all.)] I get dizzy even considering having my focus on something through a Macro lens and trying to orient myself in my surroundings. I am much impressed!)

Michele (Rocky Mtn.Girl) said...

Wow... that is one fantastic close up shot! Very nice, I try but I just cannot do it... I'll just stand back and let the pros do it and enjoy the photos such as this!

DeeMom said...

WOW what a picture, the rose is awesome...

Are you sure that is an ANT? Might be the Uncle ;)

Picturing of Life said...

wow...excelent.

Mine in here Thanks

Skittles said...

It looks like a good shot to me! :)

Tammy said...

I LOVE IT!!! The beauty of the rose and the creepy of the ant together is amazing.

Me & my puppies said...

Don't you just love macro? Great photos.

Jo Beaufoix said...

That is such a fantastic shot.

andrée said...

I'm going to start playing the lottery so that I can get my camera. the #$% car ate the money by breaking nearly in two.

So how do you determine how you "should have" framed a photo? the rule of 3s?

Anna said...

You captured such a cute little critter here. My first impulse would have been to get rid of them, too.

Corey~living and loving said...

love the title. :)
cool shot. I am curently trying to photogrpahy bugs....it isn't easy.

lv2scpbk said...

Very funny title. I like it and wonderful photo.

Mishelle/Secret Agent Mama said...

Absolutely wonderful!