Focus stacking is a shooting method where you take multiple shots at slightly different focus distances ('bracketing') and then blend or 'stack' them into a single image so that more of a subject or scene is in focus. You can combine your images using editing software, or using the in-camera focus stacking tools in Canon cameras.
When you're shooting very close to your subject, you will typically use a wide aperture (low f-number) to let in as much light as possible. However, this gives you a very narrow depth of field, which means that much of the subject or the scene is out of focus. Focus stacking can unlock a world of hidden beauty and intricate detail in macro photography, but it's also ideal for landscapes when you want a scene to be sharp from front to back.
With over a decade of experience shooting for nature publications, professional macro photographer Matt Doogue is an expert at manual focus stacking. However, cutting-edge features inside Canon's EOS R System mirrorless cameras can help you achieve the same result without any editing at all. Using the Canon EOS R7 and EOS R10's in-built focus bracketing and stacking features, it's possible to get mesmerising close-ups with minimal effort.
Choosing the best beginner macro kit is important for focus stacking, but you also need practical ways to use it. In this guide, discover how Matt uses focus stacking for stunning shots of nature – both manually and in-camera. With a few tips on how to shoot macro and the latest Canon EOS R System lineup, you'll soon be capturing powerful pin-sharp photos.