Sunday, May 5, 2013

Thanksgiving Point - Part 1

I have to get my Spring tulip 'fix' quickly, because they don't last long, so Saturday morning I spent a couple of hours at Thanksgiving point.  This is my second favorite place to photograph spring flowers.
Last post I mentioned a couple of ideas to help add some pizazz to your flower photos.  Here are a few additional ideas about flower photography.  

When you are shooting outdoors without a flash, you are at the mercy of the natural light available.  And as you know, lighting is critical.  I rarely if ever take photos of flowers in the middle of a sunny day because the light will be harsh, flat, and the colors will look all bleached out.  So as with most outdoor photography, the golden hours of dawn and dusk are best.  

I didn't manage to get out this day until early morning, but certainly after dawn, and so I had to play 'cat and mouse' with the sun to find attractive light.  In this photo, the sun was still soft enough that it highlighted these two flowers beautifully.  I try to find compositions where my subject flowers are in light, and the background foliage is in natural shadows.

This single tulip was lit by a ray of sun, while surrounding foliage is in shadow.  In addition, water droplets can add dimension, reflections and interest to flower photos.  These are natural, but no one says you can't carry a spray bottle of water as part of your photography gear!

If I am shooting in large flower gardens, I try to to find 'the loner', that is, the one that doesn't belong.  This flower becomes my focal point and makes for an interesting composition.  I also look for flowers that are back lit which creates dimension and a soft glow.

I love when I can capture water sprinkles glistening through the sun.  Another part of this composition that makes it interesting to me is that I've included a layering effect with the second row of flowers at the top.

Sometimes a single color palette with different shapes and sizes of flowers is eye catching.  Here the tulips are the subjects and the forsythia is the backdrop.  I also like that there is a soft diagonal line through the photo.

This photo combines several of my favorite things:  a simple composition with one flower as the main subject, with several 'supporting' flowers, beautiful side lighting on the subject making it stand out from the shaded background, and dewdrops.  A perfect combination for me!