Rose Reflection
Macro,  Photo Gear

Easy Flower Macro Reflection Lighting Set Up

A reflection is a great way to add depth and interest to your macro photographs.  In this blog, I’ll show you a quick and cheap set up for reflections in close up photography.

For this reflection photograph I used a rose bud from my garden, but you can use a variety of subjects including other flowers in your garden, fruit, vegetables, coins, etc.

Rose Reflection
Rose Reflection

This set up is cheap and easy to set up, and once you have the materials you can continue to use this same setup for other macro reflections.

Materials for a Flower Macro Reflection Set Up

Here is what I used for this rose reflection close up:

  • Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark III, but just about any camera will work for this shot.
  • Olympus 12-100 f/4 lens @75mm
  • Round mirror.  Purchased at my local arts and craft store for $4.00
  • 2 pieces 9” x 12” black felt
  • 1 piece of black poster board
  • 2 clip on LED reading lamps – but you can you other lighting you have on hand, even flashlights if you have something or someone to hold them.
  • I also used a syringe to add a couple of water drops to the rose
Rose Reflection Lighting Set Up
Rose Reflection Lighting Set Up

Flower Reflection Set Up

The basic setup is to place the mirror on the felt and have the felt curve up the poster board that is propped up vertically.  The felt will give you a dark background that absorbs light.  You could also add a colored background.  Try using a lightbox app on your tablet.

Place the flower directly on the mirror. You may need to clean your mirror with a microfiber cloth or a blower several times throughout the shoot.

Topaz Labs

Place one of the lights on each side of the subject.  I placed one light more in front of the subject and the other back more to the side as a secondary light.  My LED lights have the ability to change the color temperatures, play around with different temperatures of light.

I shot handheld but you could also use a tripod with a remote shutter release.  My Olympus OM-D E-M1 III has terrific image stabilization so I shot handheld so I could more easily try different angles.  Here are the settings that I used for the shot: ISO 500, f/13, 1/50 of a second, Auto White Balance.

Written by Martin Belan

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