Spring bloomers offer great photo opportunities

Wood Poppy with bud.
Wood Poppy with bud.

The spring bloom here in Western North Carolina is right on time. This morning at the Corneille Bryan Native Garden a number of wildflowers were popping up.  I’m also reminded that photography is more than just pointing and shooting. There are winter leaves to contend with. They don’t just go away. And the flowers are very small.

In this issue, we’ll discuss some of the under story distractions for photos that workthings we can do to mitigate their effect. We can see some of the distractions in the background, above. But, it can really be challenging, even for the new shoots trying to come through, like this…

What to do? For one thing, we don’t have to photograph every flower we see. We can also change our angle of view. Looking for a clear area behind the subject can help.

Blood root CBNGOn this image, I had to get very low. For that, I often wear a pair of knee pads.

I used a 200mm lens for this and an extension tube to get closer to the image. A tripod allows us to position the outfit as it is set on a very larger aperture, ie. f4.5 which requires a slow shutter speed.

We can also isolate a part of the image to create almost aCelestine Bud (Wood Poppy) macro image.

Usually, some post production work is required to bring out the best of the image.

Plox CBNGOn this group of phlox, I was able to be further away but still had to use a 200mm lens to help blow out the leaves in the background. But I also had to use some post production to isolate even more. I also could have underexposed the image  and use a fill flash to illuminate the flowers.

Out next Field Photo Program begins April 19, 2016 at which time we’ll cover this issue more as well as be in the field to work with each participant in this area.

Photo opportunities will continue to get exciting from now through June & July and in the mountains, different elevations will produce different blooms. The Bloom Schedule of the Blue Ridge Parkway is local schedule that shows when and where various species will be blooming. There is also a map that shows the entire Blue Ridge Parkway at the Pisgah Inn Gift Shop close to the Asheville Entrance.

Look for more discussion in future blogs…



    • Thank you. I have to mention that I was using the Sony a6ooo mirrorless camera with the 55-200mm kit lens and an extension tube to get closer. The image stabilization is super. Actually, I didn’t have to use a tripod on these which always amazes me. I let the ISO float freely which really stops any movement. The Auto focus is really fast and accurate. What I’m saying is that all those things I would have to do with my DSLR on Tripod, so the camera really helps. I’ll still accept the attention, however. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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