Using a macro lens with almost any phone camera, like the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, Galaxy S10 Plus or Pixel 4, allows you to get up close on incredible details and capture a side of nature you never knew existed. "Macro photography" simply means taking a photo of a subject in extreme close-up so they appear life-size or larger in the resulting image.

Macro photography can make even tiny subjects like garden insects or flower petals look huge on screen or print, and you'll be amazed at how different such otherwise mundane things look when viewed so close.

Best of all, you don't need much equipment or have to leave your backyard to get started.

Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Note that while I'm using a Galaxy S10 Plus to take the images you see in this article, most of these tips will apply to any phone, whether you're shooting on Android or iPhone.

1. Get a macro lens for your phone

The only thing you need to add to your phone to take macro shots is a macro lens. I use Moment's macro lens, which attaches to a dedicated Moment phone case. Moment's lenses are on the pricey side, but they're made from high-quality glass and are among the best quality around. The cases fit Galaxy S8 ($265 at Amazon) phones and newer, iPhone 6 and newer, the OnePlus 6, 6T and 7 Pro, and Google Pixels too.

Andrew Hoyle/CNETMoment's macro lens produces beautiful results.

You can also find clip-on macro lenses from companies like Olloclip (Olloclip's clip system lets you attach lenses to almost any phone). There are a variety available on Amazon for much less, although I can't speak for the quality.

2. Find your subject: Insects and flowers work best

Crucial to everything is finding a subject that works well in macro. Evidently, you need to think small. Really small.

The natural world is full of possibilities -- just search "macro photography" in Google and the image results are dominated by pictures of insects and plant life. The great thing is, trying to find this sort of wildlife to photograph doesn't mean hopping on a plane to a remote nature reserve.

Your garden or a nearby park will likely be teeming with subject matter. But finding it can be more difficult. My tip is to pay attention to small sections of plants or bushes, looking out for any minibeasts that may be clinging to stalks or hiding under leaves. It can be time consuming, but once you get the hang of how to find them and where they're more likely to be, it becomes easier.

Andrew Hoyle/CNETFinding this tiny little spider was easy -- it came to me!

Remember though, this is their home. So don't break plants or pull leaves off just to get better shots. Getting a cool picture is not an excuse for destroying a habitat.

If insects aren't your thing, have a scan for interesting flowers, leaves, rocks, loose feathers or other natural items that might look totally different up close. Even textures on clothing, food or skin can look interesting when magnified in an image.

Andrew Hoyle/CNETIt doesn't have to be insects -- keep your eye out for any interesting small details that could make for a great macro shot.

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Original Author |
Nov 19, 2019

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