I haven't been a contributor to DT for very long so I am still working out what sells and learning new techniques or improving existing skills.
I can see a lot of macro photography when browsing the portfolios. Macro photography is appealing to me because it avoids the problem of getting model releases (which currently prevents me from uploading some of the shots I have).
So I thought I would give it a go even if the resulting photos do not sell. At least I would be learning from the experience.
But how do they get those closeup macro shots with a pure white background and perfect lighting of the subject?
After some investigation and reading the DT blogs I found (at least part of) the answer :- a lightbox!
But lightboxes cost money! I dont really want to spend much money on something I am just starting to learn.
So I thought why can't I just get a large sheet of white cardboard, put the subject I want to photograph onto it and add a light source? I tried this and found that the light I was using was too 'yellow' so i went out and bought a 'daylight simulation' bulb (low cost). This provides a much whiter light which appears more natural in the photo. After several photos and downloading onto my PC I found that it was very difficult to get the lighting right. After much thinking and scratching of head I worked out that most of the light was 'radiating' out across the room rather than lighting my subject. So I decided I really needed to use a lighbox, but that brought me back to the subject of cost.
I noticed a blog on DT that referenced a website with instructions on how to make your own lightbox and decided to do exactly that! I got a small box I had lying around and cut a hole in one side where the camera lens will go. Then on the top of the box where the lid is I taped on a single sheet of A4 printer paper (remember its a small box). I also taped some A4 paper onto the inside surfaces of the box to reflect the light (in theory). Then using my daylight bulb I shone the light in through the paper on top. This works much better that just the sheet of cardboard.
However I am still not 100% happy with the results. I think I need a 100watt bulb (I am currently using a 60watt bulb) to provide a brighter light. Also I think I need a better lamp as the one I am using currently doesnt have a 'shade' so not all of the light is being directed where I want it. Also I think it might be worth adding a second light source so I can light the subject from the sides to provide a more balanced exposure.
Some more experimentation required I think. At least i am having fun along the way!