Fun with Macro. / by Luke Cheng

I spent the better part of this Christmas Season moving houses, and if you've ever moved, you know that a lot of things get unearthed and 're-found' during moves. One of the things I've rediscovered has been my old toys from college. Now, these aren't your regular toys that you play with in the dirt. These were individually numbered collectibles that I used to treasure. Over the years I've sort of forgotten about them, but now that they have made a reappearance, I've suddenly found my interest in them restored. I decided to take my Sony 30mm macro lens for a little spin photographing a few of the figurines I found. It was great fun, and I was happy to put my little used macro lens to some use!

My hands down favorite toy line as a kid was G.I. Joe. I would be glued to the television show and play with the toys all day long... even in the bath tub! There were many battles fought between G.I. Joe and their enemy Cobra. G.I. Joe was cool and all, but the Cobra figures and toys always looked better to me. Their darker shades and futuristic vehicles were sleek; they definitely captured the imagination more than the G.I. Joe models that were based on standard military machines.

Shown above is a portrait of Destro, Cobra's second in command. I would love to have a Cobra Commander bust, but I haven't found one for a good deal yet. One day, hopefully, the commander will join my little collection.

Here's the Baroness, Destro's main squeeze. She definitely captured my imagination as a young kid. You could say I had a big crush on her! I don't know why, but there's just something about strong *cough* *cough* *evil* *cough* *cough women that intrigues me. She was also a very high ranking Cobra officer and would often go undercover to infiltrate G.I. Joe.

You can see here that using the 30mm macro lens gave this portrait a strong depth of field. I had to get really close to the figure in order to get this shot. I think it turned out pretty good. The 30mm is a nice lens for objects like that are stationary.

This figure of Cobra's ninja Storm Shadow is a favorite of mine. How can you not like a bad ass ninja?!?!?! He was super powerful, and a strong foe for the Joe's. He being in white was also a nice contrast to the other Cobra figures - it really set him apart.

For this photo, I had to dial down the highlights in order to recover some detail. This happens often when the subject you are taking a picture of is clad in white or bright colors.

To get some perspective on how large these busts really are, here is a photo of them sitting on my display shelf. As you can see, they aren't that big, but the macro lens really gave them a good size. Macro lenses are amazing for making small object look larger. Photographing things like coins and insects really open up your eyes to a new world of imaging.

The Sony 30mm macro lens isn't the best lens out there, but it definitely does the job and comes at a price that doesn't break the bank. I got mine for under $300 a while back. If you have a Sony system and want to try some macro photography, it's really your only option without using a third party adapter. Hopefully I'll do some more macro photography in the near future. Look forward to those posts!