You can take photos in any season, but summer is the best season for photography, hands down. For one, you don’t have to think about layering. You can just wear your regular clothes without heavy coats weighing you down.
And you have even more reason to celebrate if you go for a photoshoot in a park or garden. With pretty flowers and mostly stationary plants, you don’t need fancy equipment – your camera and a lens will do.
But, know these tips before you go to your garden.
1. Play with different openings
When you have beautiful subjects like flowers, remember to bring out the artist in you. Try different apertures in your camera and check the differences. Shallow depth of field can give you stunning bokeh. Bokeh looks especially nice on a floral and green background.
If you want the flowers to look sharp, try a deep depth of field. You can still get the bokeh if you put some distance between your subject and the background.
2. Check your background
There is a good amount of brown color in the garden. However, the brown background is not very attractive in the photos. It will ruin the look of your flowers and plants. So take the time to compose your scene. Then try taking photos from different angles to find an attractive background.
Put your flowers against the sky or in front of the greenery. You may need to crouch or climb to get the shots you want. Be prepared to get your hands (and legs) dirty.
3. Backlighting is your best friend
If your main subjects are flowers, greenery, or insects, lighting them from behind can make them stand out. Backlighting can make your subject appear translucent and add depth to your photos. Additionally, lighting your subject from behind can give an airy summer look.
You can also deliberately reduce the amount of light entering your camera and take great pictures of flower silhouettes.
4. Look beyond the flowers
When we think of gardens, flowers are the first things that come to mind. But, there are other exciting things to photograph in your backyard. Things like buds, leaves, and vegetables also deserve your attention. So zoom in and capture things like looping vines, uniquely shaped leaves, fresh buds, and crisp veggies. Also, remember to focus on fairy and herb gardens.
You can add a human element to your garden photos to tell a story. Capture the kids planting a sapling or placing a gnome in the garden. Include off-the-shelf accessories and tools like shovels, rakes and trowels in your build.
5. Don’t forget the critters
All those bees, insects, butterflies and birds make your garden a garden. Without them, your garden will be just barren soil. Having these creatures in your backyard photos is a lovely way to appreciate them. They bring life not only to your garden, but also to your photos.
Animals in your garden come in all shapes and sizes, not just pretty and colorful. So get down and shoot unappreciated critters like slugs, worms, frogs and snails.
6. Try different times of the day
You can take garden photos at any time of the day. In the early morning, you can find fresh flowers shimmering with dewdrops or misty scenes. Noon is best for finding winged beauties like bees and butterflies.
If you have people in your garden photos, twilight can be perfect for capturing emotions. This is also the time to barbecue in the garden. So capture those moments.
7. Shoot in various weather conditions
From foggy to sunny and rainy, your garden will look beautiful whatever the weather. On an overcast day, you get a natural diffuser where the clouds soften the sunlight. As a result, you get rich colors.
Adopt different weather conditions. For example, introduce movement on windy days. On the other hand, the flowers and leaves look fresh after the rain; this is also the time when critters are active.
You can even take pictures of the evergreens or the greenhouse in the snow.
8. Document each season
Sure, summer is the perfect time for garden photos, but getting outside and photographing your garden in any season can be a fun project. You can see how the new buds turn into flowers and fruits or marvel at the changing colors of the leaves as the seasons change.
Don’t forget to write down the name of your plant and the date. This way you will know the progress of your plants and will not be confused between different plants.
9. Avoid flashes
Your garden is home to many tiny creatures, so flashing high-powered lights is prohibited. You may not get enough light if your garden has many nooks, crannies, or heavy foliage. In this case, bring your tripod so you can use a slower shutter speed to let in more light.
Also, don’t worry about the increase in high ISO; most modern cameras can handle high ISO sensitivity. Or, you can remove the noise with your post-production software.
10. Take time-lapse photos
Do you have a lot of flowering plants in your garden? Then it’s time to try a blooming flower time-lapse project, we’ve got all the instructions for you. With an Accelerated Project, you can speed up small changes invisible to the naked eye.
If you have a vegetable garden, there is nothing more satisfying than growing your own produce and enjoying it. But what’s more satisfying is taking a time-lapse video of a flower transitioning into fruit.
Have you found a caterpillar in your garden? You can do the metamorphosis time-lapse, the caterpillar building a cocoon and turning into a butterfly.
11. Invest in a macro lens
Like we said before, your current gear is probably good enough for backyard photography. But, if you want to take garden photography more seriously, it’s wise to invest in a macro lens. The macro lens lets you get closer to your subject. It will highlight all the little details your eyes can’t see.
Macro lenses also have superior lens elements that will enhance your backyard images. A macro lens can also be a fantastic all-rounder because you can use it for different types of photography.
12. Bring out the details in the edit
Just like your garden, your garden photos also need love and care. You should edit your images in your favorite editing software to enhance colors, adjust composition, and add other fun presets.
It’s good practice to take garden photos in RAW as you can adjust the white balance later in post-production.
Garden photography is refreshing for your mind and body
From keeping your body fit to keeping your brain healthy and sharp, spending time outdoors has many benefits. Gardening, in particular, is a great hobby. It allows you to connect with the Earth and help the environment. Bees and butterflies thrive on your plants.
You don’t have a garden yet? Start planting something small. A slice of tomato is enough. Plant it and wait a few days. Once your saplings appear, start clicking! Don’t forget to keep our tips handy.