Bugs still kind of freak me out. Just a little. I spend a lot of time taking photographs of bugs, as close as I can get to them, sometimes an inch or so away from those compound eyes, scaly wings, proboscises and, yes, stingers. I do it, because I find these creatures beautiful, fascinating, enlightening, bizarre and somehow, transcendentally, representative of the human condition. But when I was five years old, I had stepped on a bee’s nest and found myself in the middle of a swarm of understandably upset Hymenoptera. They stung me good. In the interim between then and now, I
haven’t been stung have only been stung once twice, and I did fall out of tree when a bug buzzed me (I was about 10 years old and 6 or so feet in the air). In college, I had a seminal moment, saving a wasp from my dorm window by capturing it in a cup and hustling down the hall and out the door. The heebie-jeebies were running up and down my spine like busy worker ants; I dropped the cup on the ground and couldn’t get back into the dorm fast enough. That was then (and then seems a long way behind me). Insects buzz me now, and I still jump here and there. And sometimes those are just harmless, clunky beetles. So I get why bugs get love in proportion to their tiny bodies: alien, repulsive and, sometimes, though not nearly as much as in the human imagination, frightening and dangerous. But if we look a little longer and a little closer, the pest flies away and there is a unique wonder in their forms, colors and movements. That’s why I photograph them.
My name is Michael Marlow, and I am a fiction writer and photographer. I have been shooting bugs for a few years now. My current camera is a Nikon D5000, and I typically use the reverse lens technique with a standard Nikon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AF-S kit lens. I also use a broken (no zoom ring!) Nikon 35-70mm f/3.3.-4.5 for bigger subjects. I also have an MPE-65 that I use in my dreams.
Visitors here will find close-up photographs featuring arthropods and other tiny critters (as well as an occasional off-topic shot) that hopefully will give a glimpse into the natural art of the bug. I also try to identify each featured bug and give a little helpful or interesting information, when I can. My modest hope is to increase the knowledge, appreciation and love of bugs with a little healthy exposure.
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Copyright, Usage and Licensing
Please note, all content on this site, including photographs, other images, graphics, and text, is copyrighted by its author (Michael Marlow). All rights are reserved.
If you’re interested in using my photographs for a project I would be happy to discuss it with you. If it is for personal, educational, and/or non-commercial use, I will probably only ask for a credit and link-back (when applicable). For commercial uses, including artistic models or derivative works, I will likely request a fee.
Regarding licensing, I have not at present worked out a policy for licenses specific to certain types of uses. So for the time being, I will proceed on a case by case basis.