AHPS Super Macro Photography Workshop

By Jeff Insel

In July, I was fortunate to work the Super Macro workshop featuring Amy Horn and Bruce Taubert as the instructors/photographers. There aren’t many organizations teaching Super Macro so this was very special. Besides bringing their particular skills, the instructors also brought a variety of specimens (beetles, wasps, butterfly wings, agate slivers and bird feathers), accessories such as custom diffusers (formerly Tapioca pudding containers), extra focus rails, camera flashes, receivers, transceivers, Cognisys Stackshot and various lenses. Super macro allows you to get very close up and detailed photos (up to 5x magnification) of your subject, e.g. a fly’s eye, or scales that make up a butterfly wing.


This workshop was very hands on for two days. The instructors did a brief introductory presentation with slides of various super macro photos and demonstrated the use of the custom diffuser and Cognisys Stackshot as well as how to use the Helicon Focus Stacking software.

Amy demonstrates
Bruce demonstrates

The participants practiced taking photos of the various specimens and using the focus rails before downloading them to the Helicon Focus Stacking program and further editing as needed.

Using a focus rail

This was a fun and different type of workshop, and the participants got some great photos and learned new skills. There’s another Super Macro workshop scheduled for September 18-19, 2021, check the website at ahps.org for details.

Jeff Insel is a Photo Guide with Arizona Highways PhotoScapes