It's springtime again and, as you know, some of us love taking photos to flowers, but do we know all the rules we have to follow to end up having pieces of art in our gallery?
Below you have some ideas taken from digital-photography-school.com…
that you might be interested in.
I hope this journal's going to be useful!
~~~1. Highlighting subjects
Let's start with a question: "What distractions are there in the background and foreground?"
Gardens are filled with all kinds of potential distractions. They might be the tool shed, a fence, other flowers, the clothes line etc. A decision needs to be made whether you want to include these elements or remove them from your shot. Either option is legitimate but in most cases you'll probably want to remove them unless they in some way enhance your shot.
There are a number of options open to you if you want to remove distractive elements:move them
some distractions can be moved pretty easily so that they're not in your framemove yourself
find a new angle to shoot from that has a less distracting backgroundcrop them out
- go for a tighter framing of the flower either by using a zoom or moving physically closer to ituse aperture to narrow depth of field
if you choose a wider aperture (small numbers) you'll decrease the depth of field. As you do this you make elements in the foreground and background more and more out of focus.move your subject
- Some photographers will move the flower to a new location for the shot. This might include getting someone to hold the stem on a different angle or could even mean picking the flower and taking it elsewhere. If you're going to do this make sure you are aware of the environmental impact of your photography.
2. Don't ignore the dead, marked or dying flower
Sometimes carcasses of flowers can present you with wonderful subject matter. While the perfect flower is the one you'll probably be drawn to first sometimes the more interesting shot is the 'ugly duckling' beside it.3. Identify a focal point
As in all types of photography you need to think about where you want your viewers eye to be drawn. Consider setting it off centre using the rule of thirds but do find something in your frame that will grab your viewer's eye and carefully think about how to position it.4. Go abstract
Sometimes going in extra close and focussing in on a part of the flower can create wonderful and unusual images that take on an abstract quality. Look for contrasting colors, patterns and textures.5. Focus is Key
Sharp focus is important in all forms of photography but in flower Macro photography it is crucial and even a tiny adjustment can have massive implications for your shot as the depth of field is so small. In macro photography your depth of field is a game of millimetres so attention to detail in focussing is something to be worked upon.
Identify the point of interest that you want to be in focus and then work hard to ensure that it's as sharp as possible. This can be a real challenge, especially outdoors on breezy days where you'll probably end up taking a lot of images and relying on luck to some degree! You can improve your 'luck' a little by photographing in a more controlled environment (taking flowers inside for studio shots, shielding them from wind or just choosing to do your photography on a still day).6. Lighting
Ideally your subject will be wonderfully lit without you needing to offer any assistance, however the world of outdoor macro photography is often far from ideal and there might be a need to intervene with either artificial light or some kind of reflector.
Using a flash is something to experiment with. Generally you'll find that direct flash on automatic mode might wash photos out a little so consider using a flash diffuser and/or bouncing your flash off another object. The more subtle and indirect the flash is the more natural your shots will look.
Reflectors can also be handy in shooting flowers as they give a nice, natural, diffused light into areas of your subject that might not be getting natural sunlight. Experiment with different colored reflectors as they can really impact the colors in your shot.