Sunday, 19 June 2011

Top tips for photographing the garden

I have been trawling through the thousands of digital photos I have on my computer, purging, tagging, and rating them, all because of Stacey Julian’s new class Finding Photo Freedom.  I have come across nearly 2,000 of the garden!  Looking through them all in one go is a really good way of seeing what works and what doesn’t!

So here’s my top tips:

Wait until the sun comes out. 

Photos really do look better with sunlight!  This yellow iris was just catching a few rays of sunshine when I noticed it – it was like a spotlight on it!


Get close in.

I am lucky enough to have a macro lens, and love nothing better than to get really close up to my flowers!  Here’s a perennial geranium ‘Johnson’s Blue’.


Get the focus right.

Sometimes when I try to take a macro shot I get the wrong bit in focus! I like to have a narrow depth of field, but sometimes it can be too narrow! Many flowers are actually quite deep, for example I always have trouble photographing daffodils.

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This problem can be alleviated by using a smaller aperture (larger f no) thus creating a larger depth of field.  You can see here how the middle daisy flower is in focus but the 2 flowers nearer the camera are blurry.  I love this photo like this but it would have worked perfectly well with any of the individual flowers in focus. But arguably not as stunning with all three flowers in focus!



Don’t forget to look up:

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And down:


Look for patterns:

Here’s my garden bench taken from an unusual angle!

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It’s not just flowers that make stunning shots

Try seed heads too, especially in the winter:

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Black and white can work well with architectural plants, like this palm:

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Look for different textures:

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Finally, break the rules and have fun!

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Jo.C said...

The problem with daffodils and orchids is that they are deep flowers and some part of it is always out of focus. Fabulous shots and a great post. I am plodding through my photos for it as I type :0)

scrappysue said...

Great post Linda, and a wonderful collection of photos! I would love a macro lens; which do you have? x

Alison said...

Lovely pictures and great advice
Alison xx

Sian said...

2000 photos! Wow! You have made me think about getting out into our little patch and taking some pictures before Summer disappears