WORDS: AARON BURDEN //
I believe I picked up my first olloclip for my iPhone 4s. The fisheye and macro lens seemed to open up a whole different perspective of mobile photography. The fisheye offers the ability to capture super-wide scenes. I've found it to be fun in the fall. The macro lens has also uncovered another world. Right now, I'm enjoying capturing wildflowers and spring, but one of my favorite subjects to capture with the olloclip macro lens are snowflakes. I'm not the biggest fan of cold weather, but since I've moved to Michigan, I've come to find the opportunities in it. At this point, I'm hoping that our snow days are behind us, but in Michigan you never know. If you're interested, here are a few macro tips for snowflake photography, most of them are useful for almost all olloclip macro photography.
The first tip is to identify the snowfalls that bring the perfect snowflakes. I don't know how else to describe it other than the "flurries" stage. I find that the great snowflakes are in the light, slow falling snow. The flakes seem to float not rain down. If they are falling quickly, they're probably not the best to capture.
Make sure your macro lens is clean. Sometimes I get frustrated because it seems that I can't get a snowflake in focus, but it's because there is dust or a fingerprint on the lens. Sometimes, I keep a Q-Tip in a bag to clean the little dust and dirt from inside the lens and the olloclip bag can be used for the fingerprints.
I like to choose a dark and cold background. (If it's not cold then, of course, they will melt.) You can use a glove, scarf, car window, or even some evergreen tree branches. I like to pick an area and wait for the snowflakes to come to me. For me, it's just like fishing; it requires a little patience.
My last tip is "less is more." I like to look for one snowflake and focus on it. It's easier to capture the detail of one snowflake than multiples. Also, take your time to capture the image you want. Sometimes, I mess up by trying to capture lots of snowflakes versus stopping to nail the focus on one good snowflake. (One other quick iOS tip is to use the volume up on the headphones as a remote shutter. If you press the volume up on the iPhone or the headphones the iPhone will take a picture. I know this is a little strange, but I put the headphone volume button between my teeth to press the shutter, so I can use both hands and minimize camera shake. I told you it was weird.)
If you're in an area where it snows, I hope this will help you capture some snowflakes. And if you don't, pick up your olloclip and capture something else amazing whatever season it is where you live.