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PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2014 3:50 am 

Joined: Wed May 21, 2014 3:19 am
Posts: 1
Hello! I am a private concierge jeweler and would like to take professional-quality close-up photographs of my completed projects. The photos will ultimately be posted on my website (which is currently under construction) and will serve as advertising for my services. I would like to change the "background" for my photographs seasonally - flowers in spring, autumnal decorations in the Fall, etc. I imagine the background item(s) to be just out of focus, but not totally blurred, while the jewelry item itself is in sharp focus and is the strong focal point of the photograph.

I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your lens guide, however, I must admit I am still a bit confused as to which is the best macro lens for my needs that will fit a D3000 body. I am most assuredly an amateur photographer and I would feel more comfortable with a basic lens vs. something fancy. I just need a lens that will help me take awesome pictures with minimal fuss.

Thank you very much for the extraordinary amount of information you have shared on your website and your willingness to share your knowledge & passion with others. Your website is truly remarkable in its breadth of content & detail.

Your guidance & help is greatly appreciated. I look forward to your reply.



PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2014 1:15 pm 

Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2010 11:55 pm
Posts: 994
Location: SE Texas
Welcome to the forum! :)

Your camera body does not have a focusing motor to drive pre-AF-S lenses, so be sure that any lens you buy is designated AF-S, if you want auto-focus to be functional. If choosing a third-party lens, make sure it has its own focusing motor.

Then, look for the lens suitable for the distance at which you wish to work. Each Nikon micro/macro lens has a minimum focusing distance, at which the subject will be at 1:1 magnification on the sensor. (Some older Nikon lenses, and some third-party macro lenses, will be at 2:1, or another intermediate magnification.) A draw-back to a close working distance is that it can be difficult to light your subject, as the lens can cast a shadow.

I am not sure of the best working distance for jewelry, so cannot offer a specific recommendation, but when I photograph small items of evidence, I use a 100mm Canon macro lens. A shorter focal length might be fine for inanimate subjects, but I must also photograph living subjects, and the working distance of a 100mm macro lens can be close enough for discomfort.

I am unfamiliar with Nikons' Micro-Nikkor lenses, but would like to try both the 60mm AF-S 2.8G and the 200mm f/4D, eventually. I am participating in this thread to learn. :-) Notably, the 200mm f/4D Micro-Nikkor is not AF-S, so would only work on your D3000 if manually focused.

Canon 5Ds R/7D2/7D/5D/40D/1D2N/M3; Nikon F6/D3s/D700/FM3A/1Dx/Coolpix A. Lens selection undergoing changes; some favorites: Zeiss 2/135 APO Sonnar, Canon 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS and 135L, Nikkor 14-24/2.8G and 24-70/2.8G.

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