7 Fun Macro Photography Hacks in Just 90 Seconds (VIDEO)

All photographers love camera hacks, especially when they're a lot of fun to do and involve using common household items as props to create awe-inspiring images. Today's lesson from photographer Daniel Aucoin provides seven great ideas for capturing amazing macro photos that really grab attention.

Aucoin describes himself as a fine art landscape photographer who does commercial work on occasion. The tutorials he posts, like the 90-second video below, tend to focus on unique ways to capture the beauty of nature. This is a visual tutorial without dialogue, so all you have to do is sit back and watch Aucoin work his magic. He provides pertinent captions as necessary to clarify the techniques you'll learn.

The goal for this behind-the-scenes outing was to capture some uncommon images of mushrooms on the forest floor, and Aucoin did a commendable job. But his tricks work equally with a variety of small subjects like buds and blooms, insects and lizards, and other tiny creepy crawlies.

The only "prop" you need for Aucoin's first hack is a small piece of aluminum foil which he uses to bounce light onto the subject and create enchanting specular highlights. There are no props required for tip #2; rather, he demonstrates how an "inverted tripod" can do more than create an interesting ground-level perspective. As indicated in the caption, "lowering the camera helps separate the subject from the background and increases stability by lowering the center of gravity."

Sometimes simple camera accessories can be particularly helpful too, like using a polarizing filter to minimize glare and reflections on the subject of your photo. You'll also see how a small battery-operated light like Aucoin's Lume Cubes can create micro contrast to enhance the perceived sharpness of an image.

Another useful household item is a small hand-held mirror that can be employed in a variety of ways for creative effects. One trick involves wetting the surface of the mirror with liquid from a water bottle to throw some intriguing reflections into the shot.

There's still one more handy hack to go and you'll have to watch the video to see how it works. But here's something to ponder while observing Aucoin do his thing: Think about ways you can use these simple techniques when photographing macro subjects indoors.

There's much more to learn about macro and other types of photography on Aucoin's instructional YouTube channel. So be sure to pay a visit when you have time to explore.

And speaking of hacks, don't miss the tutorial we featured with another accomplished pro who explains how to create epic landscape photographs with a 3-step "hidden" Photoshop hack.