Question on Photography of our flowering bulbs

Kathleen Sayce
Wed, 07 Jan 2009 17:44:49 PST
There's an art to staging plants for photography. In situ, one needs  
to balance the natural appearance of the subject plant  with good  
framing to get an image that focuses on that plant's characters.

A book I recommend to people for good examples of in situ careful  
cleaning, twig removal, etc, is Plants of the Lewis & Clark  
Expedition, by H. Wayne Phillips. These images are all of native  
species. Wayne uses scissors, pruning clippers, and brushes to clean  
away stray leaves (stray grass leaves and long conifer needles are  
especially annoying in otherwise excellent closeups). He often takes  
30 minutes to clean up a site around one plant for one final image,  
then takes 30-50 images with 2-3 cameras. I tend to move faster, and  
inevitably find the branch, clump of grass, one dead leaf from the  
tree above on a flower, etc, only when reviewing images later at home.

In a yard or greenhouse, it's easy to take shots and then check them  
on the computer, and go back out to do it better. This is a great  
personal training practice: take the pictures, study them, figure out  
how to do them better, and go back out and take them all over again.  
With potted plants, people clean up just as much as they feel is  
needed to show the plant at its best, with the added advantage of  
being able to move the pot for optimal light and viewing angles. Some  
people use water misters and cloths to polish leaves, prune off dead  
leaves, etc, all to show the plant off.

We look forward to seeing your new images.

from the SW Washington Coast, where it's rained 2.4 inches in the  
past 17 hours, and 4 inches in the past 3 days, with more rain coming. 

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