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The story behind the shot…

…(actually two shots in this case) – Darth Vader at home in his cheese grater

Another in my series of ‘ why not try this at home’ blogs given that we’re in the middle of the Covid – 19 lockdown.

I guess most of you know that Darth Vader lived in Fortress Vader on Mustafar (so do I now I’ve googled it!) but I think he should have lived in a cheese grater as I think it suits him.

Both shots were taken in a lightbox at ISO100, f16 at 0.4 second but I could have used white paper as ‘floor’ covering, to the back and either side in a bright, but not sunny, room and spot metered on Darth Vader.

The first shot is made up of twelve frames (probably overkill if I’m honest), focus stacked, as I wanted to get front to back sharpness. When you’re working this close up even at the small aperture of f16 you won’t get much depth of field.

Focus stacking works by taking several images, each with a different focus point, and then merging them together in software. You also need a tripod to do this.

If you don’t have software (or a tripod), the second shot is a single frame where I focused on Darth Vader. If you look at the area behind him you’ll see that it drops out of focus (not so obvious in the area in front of him because I put him closer to the front of the cheese grater). Remember to keep the camera perfectly still. You can of course experiment with different apertures for different effects on the depth of field if you want to.

So both shots are fine, it’s just a matter of preference.

Don’t forget that if you have a question on how to take better pictures by taking control of the camera and would like some free advice message me, give me a ring or drop me an email; I’d be happy to help.


darth vader cheesegrater
darth vader

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