Oh yes! On yesterdays blog I forgot to mention that the Minolta Dimage 7i, that I use, has a Macro button on the lens. This means I was able to get to .30 of a metre with the wide angle setting and in the picture I am putting up today - the Long focal length Macro setting allows you to get to .25 metres. The difference is dramatic. (Those of you who do not have this facility should purchase either/or a close up lens or extension tubes) The wide angle shot was trimmed out of the full frame where the long focal length shot was almost full frame (I just cropped it a bit to make it stand up straight). I have placed a blue line across todays image to show where the point of focus is. This picture is shot at f3.5 (almost the widest aperture). The depth of field is very small and it is difficult to decide where to focus. The most important thing to remember about close up work is to set the lens to focus at a point where you have as much of the subject as you want in frame. Then to focus critically you either move the camera or the subject. At extreme close up ie. 1:1 there is no other way of focussing. USM etc will not help. Of course you might by a flook prove me wrong - but I write from the knowledge of 50 years experience.
Finally. A word about the images I am using. If they are shot with my digital camera I cut the image size down to 960x1280 pixels and then saving them at 30% quality in jpeg. I dissobey my own rule of not saving the image as a photoshop image first simply to get maximum image size reduction. The images on Blogspot are kept in Picasas web storage facility and I dont want to use all my available storage space let alone using precious bandwidth.