Flower Photography – How To Take Good Natural Flower Photos (Pt 1)

Flowers are naturally beautiful, and easy to find in the warmer months of the year, and so make a great subject for a photo. This article covers the top tips to get great photos when photographing flowers in their natural surroundings.

Choose interesting angles

If you want your flower photos to stand out from the crowd, try taking photos from unusual angles, such as looking up.

Generally when taking natural flower photos, you will want to take the photo at slightly above eye level with the flower, ensuring that the centre of the flower can be seen. This will mean crouching down, or for smaller flowers getting the camera right down at ground level.

When photographing flowers at ground level you may need to flatten or remove blades of grass or leaves that would otherwise be in the way between the camera and the flower.

Use natural light and a tripod if needed

For taking photos of flowers in their natural environment you will be best using natural light, and not flash. Natural light will generally give less harsh shadows, and should also ensure that the background behind the flower is lit well.

The best time of the day for photographing flowers is early morning or late afternoon, where the light will be warmer and less harsh than it gets later in the day. The wind is also generally lower at the start and end of the day, meaning you are less likely to get the flower blowing about while you try and take photos of it.

Depending on how well your flower is lit (e.g. if you’re shooting a bluebell in woodland then it’s probably relatively dark), then you may need to use a tripod to stabilise the camera. When placing the tripod try to be careful not squash other nearby flowers and not to knock the flower you are wanting to photograph. You don’t want to find the perfect flower and then knock all its petals off while trying to position your tripod!

For taking photos of flowers during the daytime, try shooting when there is hazy cloud, as the cloud helps diffuse the sunlight. This makes the shadows less harsh and produces a more pleasing photo.

Use a diffuser to diffuse harsh light

If you’re trying to photograph a flower under bright daylight, you can use a diffuser to soften the light, and reduce harsh shadows / highlights on the flower. A diffuser is just a thin piece of material or paper that spreads harsh direct light out over a larger area.

You can buy commercially produced diffusers, or make your own. You need some white translucent material, like a plastic bag, tissue paper, or an old T-shirt. Stretch the material over a frame (an old coat hanger bent into a diamond shape works well), and attach it securely.

When photographing the flower, hold the diffuser between the sun and the flower. You should immediately see the reduction in harsh shadows and highlights on the flower.

Landscape style flower photography

When you find a large area covered with flowers, you’ll probably want to take a photo of the whole scene. The same rules as standard landscape photography apply here. Try and include some foreground, middle-ground, and background to create a sense of depth and scale. Try and use leading lines and the rule of thirds when composing the photo too.

If it is windy, make sure you set the camera to use a fast enough shutter speed to avoid the flowers coming out blurry.

Dew covered petals

Flowers covered in early morning dew make an attractive photo, but if you missed the early morning, or there wasn’t any dew, you can create your own. If you have a misting bottle or spray bottle, you can use this to create a false dew on the flower.

Wedding Flowers Photos

Creating a cozy and romantic setting for your wedding can be conveyed through flower arrangements. It is important to leave a wonderful impression for your guests, and having a comfortable setting can be a sign of your gratitude to them for having attended and celebrating with you such an important day of your life.

Where to put your flowers
Included in the primary stages of wedding planning is evaluating the itinerary of the whole ceremony. With that determined, you can then think of how and when the flowers should be delivered for it to stay fresh and good to look at.

The venue of the ceremony, it may a church or chapel, should be decorated with the flowers of your choice while the groom and bride and the rest of the entourage go off for their make up and hairstyles at the salon. Beautiful flower arrangements should be set up in vases at the altar, alongside the aisle and at the entrance. When dealing with flower arrangements, do not forget to consider the size of the venue before setting up your wedding flowers. Photos in magazines can be your reference on how you would want your venue to be decorated.

Flower bouquets for the bride and her bridesmaids should be prepared. You can also hand out small corsages for the couple’s mothers and grandmothers. The groom, his groomsmen, the fathers and grandfather will need boutonni√®res during the ceremony.

Also, decorate the reception area with wedding flowers. Photos of wedding reception halls in the internet or in magazine can be your reference on how you may want yours to be decorated.

Natural ornaments
Nearly everyone mainly utilize as decoration are wedding flowers. Wedding Flowers Photos of various designs for wedding ceremonies can be seen in magazines and online websites. But there are some instances that you may find them inappropriate and out of place, such as having a beautiful location that needs no further decorating for flowers or other ornaments.

Candles are also one of the popular things used during wedding ceremonies and at the receptions. Candle lighting gives out a very romantic and powerful effect that is spectacular to look at. Choose a color that goes with your wedding theme.

In your wedding, you can use everything you want for decorations. Do not limit yourself from using just flowers and candles. Modern wedding receptions include water fountains and butterflies in their designs for it to be unique and memorable.

Decorating your wedding ceremony and reception is all up to you. You can keep it as plain and simple as possible, as well as very intimate and personal.

How to Take Amazing Flower Photos – A Tutorial in Macro Photography

Flowers are one of my favorite photography subject. They can’t complain if the photo doesn’t come out right. Flowers also look very different when shot from different angles and zoom levels. Explore the flower from these different angles to get completely new photos. While taking photos indoors, the 2 most important things to keep in mind are lighting and background.

1) Choose a diffused light source like a large window or multiple lamps to throw light on the flowers. Harsh lighting sources can cause the photograph to look washed out.

2) Pick an uncluttered background such as a plain wall. You can even hang a cloth at a distance behind the flowers to get a plain solid colored background. Make sure that the background is far away from the subject. This ensures that it’s out of focus and also makes sure that no shadows fall on the background.

3) Chose a low depth of field. Keeping the depth of field low will reduce the background clutter and draw attention to the flower. Low depth of field is achieved by opening up the lens wide.

Outdoors, it’s tougher to control the background.

4) Moving around to change the angle of the shot can dramatically change the background. Choose an angle from where the background is far away from the flower itself. May photographers carry a few plain cloth sheets with them to use as backgrounds.

5) Carry a Macro lens or extension tubes. Macro lenses allow you to get closer to the subject and still focus on them. Extension tubes allow you to reuse your lenses and reduce the minimum focusing distance of your lenses. Since they don’t have any optical components, they don’t harm the image quality in any way.

6) Add an insect to the photograph to make it more interesting. The best time to photograph is during early morning since the insects are still inactive due to the night’s cold and dew.

7) Rain and Dew make the flower shots more interesting. Look for flowers with dew drops on them or just spray some yourself.

Post processing of flower photos

8) You can always post process the photo to enhance it. Some of the common post processing techniques used in flower photos are cropping the photograph, increasing saturation to give richer colors, increasing contrast and brightness and adding vignetting effects. Vignetting effect is the dark shadows on the corners of the photograph’s frame often caused by the lens. Adding vignetting increases the focus to the center of the photograph.