These are the first nature and wildlife photos I ever took when I was 19 years old, I had just received my Sigma 105mm lens and was keen to start shooting at soon as I took the lens out of the box, I rushed to the garden and captured nearly everything. Don't have a garden? You have a lot of options for practising your garden photography. Photographing in parks, public gardens, and botanical gardens is another great opportunity.
Every garden is distinct, with its own personality and atmosphere. In your photographs, try to convey the garden's individuality or soul. Before shooting any shots, take some time to go about the garden and absorb everything.
Use natural light, preferably when the sun is shining but the sky is cloudy - soft, diffused light is good for revealing detail. Rather than the harsh sun of midday, photographing in the early morning and late afternoon will provide you with softer, more complimentary light. With its serenity and clarity of light, early morning is a particularly wonderful time. There's also the possibility of dew on the petals, which may look fantastic. Flash is typically too difficult to use.
Success is inextricably linked to familiarity. The more you know about a location, the higher your chances of capturing a fantastic shot are, much like with landscape photography. Garden photography requires capturing the garden in all seasons because the appearance of the garden, as well as the light, changes throughout the year.
Light changes often when working outside, make sure to check your histogram after each image. If you're using Live View to compose your image, you might also find the live histogram beneficial.
Make sure your camera's highlight alert feature is turned on so any overexposed regions show up in the playback display. If required, use exposure correction or bracket your images.
Depth of Field
When capturing close-ups or macro, manually focusing using Live View might be a useful approach. If you're using auto-focus, remember to figure out your hyperfocal distance; a depth of field. Verify your photographs in playback mode to make sure they're crisp.
To obscure the backdrop and focus the eye on the subject, use a wide aperture. Look for a flower that captures your attention and isolate it.
For the larger landscape vistas, a narrower aperture, such as F11, will be more ideal to guarantee that everything is crisp. When shooting with a macro lens, depth of focus is crucial, and a narrower aperture is frequently required.
Back-lighting can be used to represent light shining through flowers and foliage on a bright sunny day. Wind can be difficult to photograph, so use a quick shutter speed like 1/500 sec to prevent capturing movement. A wind speed of fewer than 6 miles per hour is ideal.
The Diversity of Subjects
Flowers provide excellent topics. You might easily devote your entire photographic time to them in the garden. There are a variety of other fascinating topics worth considering. These will add variety to your photo collection. Examples include plants, leaves, fruits, pots, decorations, sculptures, and ponds. You may even photograph the gardening equipment.
When it comes to tools, try to keep everything as simple as possible. A modest number of instruments organised in an appealing manner can provide stunning effects. When you add a human element to your photographs, the mood changes dramatically. Include some hands in the garden, carrying fruit or other items.
Take photographs that range in size from large to little to create variety. Take wide-angle images to capture the garden's overall vista, medium shots to highlight certain regions, and close-ups or macro photography to capture lovely details.
Each season has its own beauty, you should practise your garden photography throughout the year, not just in the spring. Change the topics according to the season. In my area, for example, I may photograph sprouts and flower flowers in the spring, fruits in the summer, vibrant leaves in the fall, and rain and snow in the winter.
Seasonal themes may fluctuate depending on your location, as well as the style of garden you are photographing. Simply enjoy monitoring and recording any changes throughout the year with your camera.
Seasons have an impact on lighting. Depending on the season, you may need to change your shooting schedule. The days are longer in the spring and summer, but you will be exposed to harsh light for several hours. The only options are early morning and evening/sunset.
Light is substantially more limited in the fall and winter. However, because gloomy days are more common, the diffused light will allow you to work throughout the noon hours as well.
Changing your stance according to the flowers to attempt various viewpoints is usually enough to achieve a clear backdrop. You may also move the bloom and/or clear the backdrop if necessary.
You may also minimise the depth of field by using a wide aperture on the camera. The goal is to maintain your subject crisp while making the rest of the scene fuzzy.
Focus on your subject using a wide aperture of f4 or smaller in your camera. If there is a distance between your subject and the backdrop, the blurring effect will be more noticeable.
A macro lens is an excellent choice for close-up photography. However, macro lenses are not inexpensive. Don't worry if you don't have one. You can still capture stunning shots with great detail!
This is the moment to use your zoom lens if you have one. I observe a lot of people coming pretty close to their cameras when photographing flowers. This might make it difficult for you to concentrate. Unless you have a macro lens, you won't be able to focus your camera at that distance!
Instead, stand at the minimum focal distance, which is the least distance at which your lens can focus. The minimum focal distances of various lenses vary. Check the lens parameters to see which one is yours.
If you still can't achieve the close-up you desire after zooming in, you may crop the image in post-production. Remember that cropping a photograph removes pixels from it, which might reduce the image's quality, especially if you wish to print it.
An Eye for Colour
Beautiful hues abound in gardens. Combining them in certain ways will benefit your subjects and increase audience attention. It's a broad topic that demands its own set of lectures. However, I can provide you with some garden-friendly advice.
There are colour choices that can offer your image a lot of contrast. One is red and blue in colour. A crimson blossom against the backdrop of the sky. Green and pink is another option. On a background of leaves, any pinkish blossom will look fantastic.
To create a good contrast in your images, blend light and dark hues. Light green leaves go well with light coloured flowers, while dark green leaves go well with dark coloured flowers.