I have a considerable experience in macro- and close-up photography of shells and fossils (over 40 years) and take all pictures for the illustrations in my own scientific publications. In practical terms, this experience amounts to several hundreds of photographs published in international scientific journals and books, and several tens of thousands of photographs in my personal archive, which I use continuously as a source of observations and illustrations for my scientific research. I also used to do my own B&W darkroom work until 2000, when I switched to digital photography.
Besides my use of photography in research, I have an interest in:
nature photography, especially birds
near UV and near IR imaging
optical microscopy of protists, algae and small invertebrates.
These pages are based on my personal experience. Some of them deal with technique, but most with the practical use of equipment and the technology of digital photography. My impressions on equipment are based on a substantial use of these items, although I do not claim to use all their features, or even to make an optimal use of them. In fact, it is entirely possible that I am using some of these items in ways never intended by their designers.
My purpose with these pages is not to make comparisons of equipment I do not own and use. I used Nikon DSLRs in the past. I currently use Micro 4/3 Olympus and OM System cameras and Sony Alpha full-frame cameras, and lenses and accessories that work with these. Therefore, the contents of this site are heavily Nikon and Micro 4/3-centric, with some information on Sony Alpha full-frame. If you are looking for reviews of other brands, or of the latest models of cameras and lenses, you may be better off checking large photography web sites, like DPreview, or taking your chances with Google search.
I started this section of my web site in the summer of 2006, and I add or update pages whenever I have something to write about. Therefore, please feel free to re-visit my web site now and then.
At the beginning of 2011, I published a book entitled Digital photography for science: close-up photography, macrophotography and photomacrography (follow the above link for more information). The contents of this book are obviously related to many of the pages linked below, but the book provides a more detailed, integrated and updated coverage of these subjects. It also concentrates on technique and methods, while many of the pages listed below are mainly tests and reviews of equipment. The book contains also chapters on setting up a laboratory for scientific photography, a discussion of professional scenarios in which scientific photography is carried out, as well as detailed discussions on the construction or modification of special photographic equipment.
I try to avoid the duplication of contents between this book and my web site. Plenty of information not suitable for the book (e.g., new tests and reviews of equipment), is continuously added to this web site, and some of this information may be more updated than the book contents.
This is a list of equipment I own and use (and some of the equipment I used in the past, especially cameras). Follow the available links to see a brief description of the items, and my impressions based on use in practical situations. I will add links as my time permits.
Finite microscope objectives (used/tried for photomacrography) Nikon Plan 2x 0.05
Nikon U 5x 0.1 (microscope objective with a diaphragm)
Nikon E Plan 10x 0.25 LWD 160/- Nikon M 40x 0.5 ELWD
Nikon M 20x 0.5 ELWD
Zeiss Epiplan HD 8x 0.2
Zeiss Epiplan HD 16x 0.35 Lomo 9X 0.20 (microscope objective with a diaphragm)
Infinity microscope objectives (used/tried for photomacrography)
Nikon CF Plan 5x 0.13 ∞/0 EPI
Nikon CF Plan 10x 0.30 ∞/0 EPI
Mitutoyo M Plan Apo 2x 0.055
Mitutoyo M Plan Apo 5x 0.14
Mitutoyo M Plan Apo 10x 0.28
Mitutoyo M Plan Apo 20x 0.42
The following items are odds-and-ends related to photographic technique and equipment.
Literature and resources Old literature -
This page makes electronic copies of several old manuals and booklets available for download. They describe photographic (especially Nikon and Nippon Kogaku) and microscope equipment, some of which is reviewed on my site. I moved this section to a separate page, since it keeps growing. Photography resources - A short list of the web sites and books on photomacrography and equipment that I find most useful.