Photography Tips - Flowers

Anytime I (Mark Jordan) find an easy to understand and wonderfully organized article on photography tips and trends, I like to pass it along to you. Here's a good one written by profession instructor, Wayne Turner. As always, should you have any questions, simply CONTACT us here at Mark Jordan Photography - no concern is too small. Enjoy!


With the advent of digital cameras and the huge amount of features, close-up photography has become the domain for everyone. The simple macro feature on the current generation of digital compacts has opened up this world to virtually anyone with a camera. Of course the ideal situation is the use of SLRs but is not limited to them.
"The Red Intruder" captured by Francois Novecento Boutiee
One of the first accessories I bought for my film SLR way back in the 1980s was a set of close-up filters that screwed on the end of my lens. This added a new dimension to my photography and I was able to get in really close to my intended subjects, flowers. Although, I did dabble a bit in shooting some of the slower insects and bugs. But flowers were still my focus. Here are some simple tips that will help you shoot better flower photos.

1. Weather Conditions & Lighting
It is totally useless if you plan to shoot flowers on a day when high wind speeds are predicted. Movement is critical especially when shooting close-ups and your image will be spoiled if you don’t take this into consideration. Lighting is critical as you need to shoot under conditions that enhance colours and allow as much natural light as possible. Unless you’re using a ring flash with a digital SLR you are too close to use the on camera flash system. Never shoot at midday as the lighting is harsh and lacking in contrast.

2. Select the right flower
Getting your lighting, exposure and composition perfect and then finding that there are blemishes on the flower’s petals or leaves is a let down. Always inspect the chosen subject before setting up your equipment and make sure that it’s almost perfect.

"Cornflowers" captured by Donaldas Urniežius
If there are little imperfections, change the angle of view or shoot the opposite site of the flower. You can also remove offending petals and leaves if they do not leave gaps and make the image look imperfect.

3. Check the background
You are limited to how many angles you can shoot from if the flower is in a garden and not a studio. Make sure that the flower or flowers you choose have a background that is simple and uncluttered and enhances the overall quality of the flower image. If it doesn’t, then consider using a piece of card that compliments the dominating colour of your chosen flower. Your focus must be on the flower and a viewer’s eye should be attracted to the flower and not the background.

4. Use a tripod
A tripod is essential to flower photography as you need as much light as possible when using a narrow depth of field or focus and if you need a wide aperture the shutter speed is often slower. A slow shutter speed will always be a problem and this limits hand holding due to camera shake.

5. Composition
Flower shots always look their best when taken from the side. Shot from above they don’t have same appeal as when taken from the side. Use the rule of thirds placing them in a slightly off-center position and never right in the middle of the image. Getting in closer will always add to the composition. If you are shooting macro you’ll see details that really create an interest.

"Rinascita" captured by Alessandro De Matteis
Creating your own indoor studio and shooting picked flowers is a simple process. Use natural light from a window and a simple coloured background and stunning images will result. Be prepared to experiment and practice your techniques.

As with any photography take you time to think before shooting but also to get the composition perfect. Don’t be afraid to vary your angles and work at getting a good focal point. Overall, flower photography is exceptionally rewarding so work at it and create great images.

About the Author
Do you want to learn more about photography in a digital world? I’ve just completed a brand new e-course delivered by e-mail. Download it here for free by clicking here: To learn how you can take your photography from ordinary to outstanding click here – Turner has been teaching photography for 25 years and has written three books on photography.

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Orange County Photographer, Mark Jordan Photography, an Rancho Santa Margarita Photographer, specializes in crafting stunning contemporary, traditional, classic, and storytelling family portraits (high school seniors, children portraits, babies, maternity, pregnancy), headshots and pets. Mark Jordan, a Photography Hall of Fame photographer (with a Rancho Santa Margarita portrait studio), and provides portrait photography throughout Orange County and Southern California. Mark Jordan's Orange County portrait studio also serves San Diego County and Inland Empire. Studio Photography Services are also provided in Riverside County and Los Angeles County. Local Cites where Mark Jordan photography studio services are offered are as an Aliso Viejo Photographer, Anaheim Photographer, Costa Mesa Photographer, Coto de Caza Photographer, Dana Point Photographer, Dove Canyon Photographer, Huntington Beach Photographer, Irvine Photographer, Ladera Ranch Photographer, Laguna Beach Photographer, Laguna Hills Photographer, Laguna Niguel Photographer, Lake Forest Photographer, Mission Viejo Photographer, Newport Beach Photographer, Northwood Photographer, Orange Photographer, Orange Park Acres Photographer, San Clemente Photographer, San Juan Capistrano Photographer, Santa Ana Photographer, Tustin Photographer, Villa Park Photographer, Westminster Photographer, Yorba Linda Photographer, Corona del Mar Photographer, Riverside Photographer, Temecula Photographer, Chino Hills Photographer, Loma Linda Photographer, Rancho Bernardo Photographer, Carlsbad Photographer, Coronado Photographer, Del Mar Photographer, Escondido Photographer, San Diego Photographer, San Marcos Photographer, Solana Beach Photographer, Carmel Mountain Ranch Photographer, Rancho San Diego Photographer, Rancho Santa Fe Photographer, and San Diego Country Estates Photographer, Turtle Rock Photographer, Shady Canyon Photographer. Portrait Photographers everywhere (photographers in O.C. as well) are welcome to contact our portrait studio for mentoring/guidance.