What older lens for close-up of tulips

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ok, been trying to get this shot with 5x7 camera and 135 ektar, almost but no cigar. So what lens should I try to purchase in the future for this kind of shot, 20 inches or less from tulips? Since I'm on a strict budget, I only look at older lens. I'm trying to get the water droplets on the leaves to focus without losing the leave and flower. Thanks ahead of time for everyones opinions. C.

-- candy popp (poppster@wccta.net), May 03, 2001


Hi Candy, shouldn't you be able to form an image with that lens? I realize the image circle of an Ektar is limited, but what happens if you run your bellows out until you lens is approximately 11" from your film plane, and then you move your camera around until you get the image of the tulip on the ground glass in focus? Isn't twice the focal length of the lens where you have 1:1 image? I've been able to fill the ground glass of my 8*10 with a small 8 1/2" lens with the bellows extended. What proceedure have you been using in focusing? Best, David

-- david clark (doclark@yorku.ca), May 03, 2001.

How about a Goerz Red Dot Arter? I suspect the problem isn't so much the focal length as it is the design of the lens. Your Ektar is probably a Tessar, and I don't think they're really designed for close-up photography. Do you do enlarging? For example, you can mount the elements from a 150mm Componon-S enlarging lens into a Copal 0 lens. At 1:1, and 150mm Componon-S should cover 5x7. Another possibility is a G-Claron, which can be fairly reasonable in price. While these are designed for close-up photography, they can also be used for distance photography when stopped down to apertures of f16 or smaller.

-- neil poulsen (neil.fg@att.net), May 03, 2001.

The problem as you describe it is really nothing to do with the lens. It sounds as if you're talking about lack of depth of field, and a better lens won't alter that. You'll still have problems with DOF using a 5x7 camera for close up work, no matter what lens you use. You need to use the camera movements to take the plane of focus through the leaf, water drops, and the flower head.
At a marked aperture of f/32 (f/64 effective aperture), you have about 8mm depth of field with a lifesize image. Of course you're not going to get the whole of a flower in focus!

-- Pete Andrews (p.l.andrews@bham.ac.uk), May 04, 2001.

Candy: I agree with Pete. It seems you have more of a depth of field problem than a problem with lens design. Buying another lens will not increase depth of field unless you can get one with smaller aperatures than f32. Going down two stops to f64 will help some, as will a little longer lens which will allow you to move back a bit.


-- Doug Paramore (dougmary@alaweb.com), May 04, 2001.

Hi Candy

The DOF is always a big problem for things like thad! The 135mm should be not a bad at all! Are you working with Scheimpflug and his "holy rules". The point is if youre closing your lens down to f 64 you are losing some sharpness because of diffraction, but sometimes some older lenses having focus shift when stopped down. So you should stop down as much as you still can see something with the lupe and then control the focus again and correct it if needed and then stop down the rest. You should maybe do a testing with a Newspaper on a table, do a marking at wich point on the paper did you focus then stop down and you find out whats happen! Did you do the shooting in wind condition outside? Means no sharpness at all! IF you have to buy an other lens, then take a shorter one and you get more DOF! Good luck

-- Armin Seeholzer (armin.seeholzer@smile.ch), May 04, 2001.

Thanks about the lens info, but I can see where I'm being an idiot about the DOF. Goddess ignorance is bliss untill you have your eyelids pried open!!!! Thanks everyone, I'm sure in the future I will entertain you with my wit!!! Am going to look at a clarion lens as well. C

-- candy Popp (poppster@wccta.net), May 04, 2001.

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