“Bellows” It’s a small world after all

I wanted to do a video on a piece of camera equipment that has always intrigued me.

The bellows is really a cheap ($35 Ebay) solution if you want to do macro photography or video but don’t want to pay big bucks for a nice macro lens. I’m sure it doesn’t deliver the same results but I was pretty impressed with the kind of shot I was getting using this with the canon t2i and kit 18-55 lens.

Tutorial and behind the scenes footage

Music Credits: “American Beauty, Main Theme” by Thomas Newman

Featured video.

Music Credits: “Light Pattern” by Bonobo

I love the idea of setting up a little mini studio and shooting random objects in extreme close up and capturing the detail and color.

When I first started shooting video using the bellows I noticed that motion could be a problem because your magnifying something to the extreme, camera shake or focus change can produce a frame that is jarred.
I remembered seeing a tutorial on Dave Dugdale’s website about a turntable he created to bring a little more life to still objects. Because I am dealing with miniatures, I needed a turntable on a smaller scale. I spent hours in target looking for a toy or anything that turns slowly and had no luck. I ended up buying a $2 mini fan with hopes to somehow figure out a way to slow it down. I didn’t want this project to be too overwhelming and I kind of new the fan was not going to cut it so I ended up at Michaels where I found this little Halloween toy with a motorized carousel ($25 on sale). After a few modifications, like stripping it down to a bare platform, I had my motorized turntable.
The inspiration for this video is from “Macro kingdom”, a video I ran across by Clemento on Vimeo (who I am almost sure does not use a bellows) has some amazing footage.

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