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Flower Photography – Tips for Shooting Amazing Photographs of Flowers

Flowers make a great subject for photography, they are beautiful, comes in all shapes, sizes and colours and above all they are easy to find. Flower photography could be done both indoors and outdoors. In this article we will be discussing about photographing flowers in their natural habitats and the challenges we normally face while doing it and tips to overcome them and get great flower photographs.

1. Get a True Macro Lens

A true macro lens is one that gives you life size magnification (1:1). It helps you get really close to your subject and capture intricate details, this way you will be able to showcase your subject in its full glory.

flower photography
Photo By Rose Mary

2. Use a Tripod

Most of the times when you are working in the field you will require adjusting something or the other to get either your backgrounds or composition right. You might have to hold a leaf or a branch so that it either does or does not appear in the frame. Using a tripod will make your job a lot easier, it also helps better compose your shots and also reduce camera shake.

flower photography
Photo By Denis Collette

3. Start Early

The best time for flower photography is during the early morning hours. The flowers will be fresh, you will have soft, natural lighting, there will be some dew on them making them all the more attractive and there is less chance of strong wind during this time.

flower photography technique
Photo By Mclcbooks

4. Use a Diffuser

A diffuser is something that diffuses light, that is makes hard light soft. If you are photographing flowers on a bright sunny day, using a diffuser between your light source (Sun) and your subject (flower) could give your soft, pleasant lighting. You could either use commercially available diffusers or make use of available materials like a white bed sheet, butter paper, or any other translucent material which does not give the light a colour cast.

flower photography tips
Photo By ARO

5. Use a Flash or a Reflector for Fill

One major issue when photographing flowers in direct sunlight is the presence of harsh shadows. Use a flash or a reflector to fill light on to the shadow regions to help reduce contrast and bring in the details. Fill light is especially helpful when the flowers you are shooting is backlit.

flower photography tips
Photo By Denis Collette

These could also come in handy when you are not photographing flowers under direct sunlight (which might be under the shade of a tree or any other object) as there will be very little light and the added light, from the flash or the reflector could come in handy.

6. Get a polarizing Filter

A polarizing filter is a very helpful tool for photographing flowers; it will help you eliminate surface reflections from the flowers thereby enhancing details. It will also help achieve greater colour saturation and contrast.

flower photography tutorial
Photo By Leo HSU

7. Control the Wind

Wind is one element that makes flower photography very difficult. However one advantage we have is that our subjects are real small. So we could effectively shield them against winds. Always carry with you some clips, clamps, and such other stuff that could help you secure your flowers. Use any available material like your reflectors, camera bag, or even yourself as a wind shield by placing yourselves in between the wind and your flower. One useful accessory for flower photography is a device which consists of a flexible arm with clamps on both ends. It is referred to as plamp (plant clamp) photographers could clamp one end on to their tripod and use the other end to secure the flower in place.

flower photography tutorial
Photo By Wendell

8. Isolate your Subject

Often times the flowers would be in cluttered places with many distracting elements nearby. When faced with such a situation, try isolating your subject from the rest by using a large aperture (e.g f/1.8, f/2.8 etc) this way you could throw most of your foreground and background out of focus thereby making your subject (flower) pop up. Another technique is to use a longer focal length lens to alter the perspective and give prominence to your subject.

flower photography technique
Photo By Mclcbooks

9. Catch Reflections in Water

Look for reflections of flowers in water, reflections are a powerful compositional tool and they work just as well in flower photography.

photographing flowers
Photo By Art G

10. Look for Symmetry while Composing

Flowers are perfect examples of symmetry in nature. They exhibit radial symmetry like none other try to capture it in your compositions and it will result in powerful images.

photographing flowers
Photo By Mike Keeling

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