There are many options for finding flowers to photograph and various ways of shooting them. There are varied options for planning your portraits, as flowers can be bought as cut flowers, pot plants or seeds to be sown in the garden. When photographing flowers outdoors you will achieve better results if you wait for the right weather conditions.
If shooting in full sun you will get very dark shadows and pale areas will burn out white, the contrast is too harsh for delicate floral photos. It’s quite rare to get the perfect weather conditions, so to increase photo opportunities you can help improve the light by modifying it yourself. The larger the area you want to diffuse the light for, the larger the diffuser you will need. If you are taking close-up shots of flowers, any wind is going to move the subject around so much that you cannot frame it up as you would like because it will be moving in and out of the shot, and around in the frame.
If you would like to use a gazebo with material to diffuse the light, this is best done when the wind is low otherwise you will have problems with it catching the wind and trying to take flight.
Your source for compelling interviews from the world's most famous photographers and insights into inspirational photography. Pot plants give a wider window of photographic opportunity than shop bought cut flowers as they do not deteriorate as quickly, they are alive and actively growing, plus they often produce new blooms as the old ones fade.
Perfect conditions for flower photography involve sun with light cloud cover or scattered clouds and a relatively low wind speed (more on that later).

If it’s a very sunny day and the contrast is too harsh you can still take photos using a diffuser.
You don’t want a subject with diffused lighting and a background still burning out because you are unable to diffuse the light falling on the background area. For a larger diffuser try buying a very thin white material (voile) to stretch over a wooden frame or to attach to a gazebo frame. Not only does this stop you from achieving the desired composition but also the accurate point of focus you intend. If you check the weather forecast anything below 10mph is good and anything below 5mph is great.
Another way to help combat problems with the wind is to use a Plamp, which is a bendable arm that has a clip on either end. Pot plants have the added versatility of being able to be photographed indoors, outdoors in their pot and also planted out into the garden for photographs in a natural setting.
Although it is beneficial if the light is diffused, it still needs to be bright as this helps to brighten colours. This works better for small and close subjects as you will need to diffuse the light falling on the whole frame. You can buy a photographic diffuser or improvise with a cheaper alternative, such as a semi-transparent plastic placemat from the home section of the supermarket, which is a cheap and effective diffuser. Using a gazebo frame works well as you can diffuse larger areas and you don’t need to hold it, but they can be more cumbersome and tricky to keep steady.

One end clips to your tripod and the other end can be clipped to a plant stem, out of shot to hold the stem still in any breeze.
If you grow flowers in your garden, you also have the option of cutting them to bring indoors to photograph.
If you pick too much of an overcast day everything looks quite grey and dull without enough contrast or sparkle to the images. Frame your photograph up with your camera on a tripod and then position the diffuser at an angle to diffuse the light falling on everything in the frame. In any conditions the wind seems to come in gusts so you need to frame up your photo, keep an eye through the viewfinder and fire the shutter when the wind has a lull. This works especially well for plants with long stems which tend to bob about even in relatively still weather.
If the day is sunny but with scattered cloud cover you can set up your shots, but wait until the sun dips slightly behind a cloud to take the photo for better lighting. The Plamp also helps you to fine tune your composition if you would like to move a flower head slightly so the background is a little different.

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