As fascinating as macro photography is, most of us think we can’t do it because it requires specialized equipment. Russian photographer Alexey Kljatov, however, is an inspiration to aspiring amateur photographers everywhere – he created a home-made rig capable of capturing stunning close-up pictures of snowflakes out of old camera parts, boards, screws, and tape. His beautiful photos give us an enchanting close-up view of snowflakes that we could never hope for without specialized macro lenses and photo cameras.

The wonderful thing about snowflakes is that no two are alike. Their extraordinary diversity stems from the many small changes in temperature and humidity that they experience while freezing on their way down to the ground. Their six-sided symmetry occurs because the crystalline structure of ice is also hexagonal. All of these factors come together to create beautiful shapes that are almost always unique.

Kljatov’s rig creates the sort of cool photos that might otherwise require lenses or other equipment worth hundreds or thousands of dollars. And the pictures he creates with this rig look absolutely amazing. For more information about how he did it and more photography hacks, check out his blog post.

Source: Flickr (via

Kljatov uses a Canon Powershot A650 and a reversed 44M-5 Helios lens from an old Russian Zenit camera. For more information about the equipment used and the rig keeping it all together, check out his blog post. UPDATE: Kljatov also drew a simple schematic of his homemade rig, so if you’re serious about trying it out, you can find more information here.