Rudbeckia Petal structure UV Macro

I thought I would see far I could magnify the petal to capture its details in UV. Hence I shot numerous images for stacking to form each image. These were processed with Helicon Focus to produce the stacked petal images you see below. Lighting was from Quantum X2D flash.

The first set were taken with the Olympus EM-5, Coastal Optics 60mm F4 APO and Baader U (with a home-made 49-25.5mm step down adapter in front to act as lens hood). I used 2 focusing helicoids to extend the lens, as well as setting lens focus to its closest focus point – the magnification is close to 1 : 1.

Rudbeckia petal in UV close-up
Rudbeckia petal in UV close-up (Coastal Optics)
Rudbeckia petal - 100% crop
Rudbeckia petal – 100% crop

Then I thought I would go one step further and get even closer. For this I used my Aico 35mm F3.5 enlarger lens, Olympus E-PL5 and U340 1mm + S8612 1.5mm (both 25.5mm filters) to shoot these images (also focus-stacked).

The filters were mounted on the M42/C-mount to Micro 4/3rds adapter, and hence is hidden from view. I used my longest focusing helicoid and two extension tubes to form my UV extreme macro setup.

Olympus E-PL5 + 35mm F3.5 enlarger lens with Focusing helicoid and 2 extension tubes
Olympus E-PL5 + 35mm F3.5 enlarger lens with Focusing helicoid and 2 extension tubes
Front view
Front view

This setup which will allow extension of 160mm from lens to sensor plane, which should be between 4-5x magnification. Images were shot at F5.6 for close to maximum sharpness of this lens.

Olympus E-PL5 + 35mm F3.5 enlarger lens (maximum extension)
Olympus E-PL5 + 35mm F3.5 enlarger lens (maximum extension 16cm)
Rudbeckia petal in UV (35mm F3.5 enlarger lens)
Rudbeckia petal in UV (35mm F3.5 enlarger lens)
100% crop
100% crop

BTW, one thing to say for those who may be interested in such imaging. My petal was mounted onto a flower holder. I noticed that my images taken using UV torch as light source (longer exposure) was actually sharper than the ones taken with Xenon flash (1/80 secs), which did not make sense.

Then I realised that there was some motion blur of the petal from the burst of light/heat from the flash causing some movement of air which shook the petal. Hence I had to reinforce the back of the petal with some PVC tape, which made the petal less prone to the force from the Xenon flash burst and hence I managed sharper images.

Boon

Equipment:

Olympus EM-5, E-PL5, Coastal Optics 60mm F4, Aico 35mm F3.5, Baader U, U340/S8612, Quantum X2D