Guest Post by Dianne Poinski
Painters have been inspired by the graceful beauty of flowers for centuries. I find them to be one of the most satisfying subjects to photograph as well. The colors and designs that only nature can create invite me to slow down and focus intently on capturing their essence.
Spring is the perfect time to set out and look for simple but stunning compositions. While it’s not difficult to use your camera to record the splendor that is before you, here are a few tips you can use to increase your chances for the best shot:
- Get close and create simple compositions.
- If you have a DSLR camera and are familiar with manual settings, set your aperture at F5.6 or F4 if you have it. This will throw your background out of focus and keep your main subject sharp.
- If you don’t have a camera with manual settings, look for flowers against simple backgrounds such as wood fences or buildings. Experiment shooting from different angles.
- Shoot with a fast shutter speed. This will help prevent blur if the wind is blowing.
- If you have a point and shoot camera, use the “Sports” setting if you have one. This setting is designed to stop action which will keep your flowers sharp and in focus.
- Lighting: When shooting flowers in an outdoor setting, try to avoid direct sunlight. Harsh light will cast shadows and create too much contrast. Early morning, late afternoon and cloudy days provide the best lighting conditions. If strong sunlight is a problem, try to find flowers in the shade to photograph. If you have a helper, you can create a diffuser by using a sheer piece of fabric and positioning it between the sun and the subject.
Floral photography is a great way to express your creativity. Bring your camera everywhere and start paying attention to your surroundings. “Kodak” moments will be everywhere this spring. Copyright © 2011 Dianne Poinski
Dianne Poinski has been photographing flowers for over 15 years. Her free e-book “Introduction to Hand Coloring Black and White Photographs” is available on her website – www.diannepoinski.com or on her blog: www.diannepoinskiblog.com.
In addition to the live workshops, she offers in the Sacramento area, she has just launched “Photo Artistry Workshop” an online site with video instruction and tutorials. More details can be found at www.diannepoinski.com/onlineworkshop
All photographs were taken in the Butchart Gardens, Victoria BC. ©2011 All rights Reserved
Thank you Dianne, for sharing these tips. They’re certainly going to help me!