Flowers make excellent models; they are incredibly beautiful, they will pose for you any time of the day and never complain. Learning to see the intricate forms and colours of the simplest blossom will enhance your ability to see and photograph everything.
Photographing flowers takes patience and concentration. I wish I could tell you there is a simple method for creating impressionist images of flowers, but there isn’t one. Each variety presents a new challenge, but with practice you will very quickly learn how to control your camera and witness magical things happening before you.
Impressionist photography is a lot of fun, and I can’t think of a better style to capture the beauty of flowers. Impressionist techniques reveal their secrets gradually to anyone who is prepared to give it a go. Learning how to use them is a challenge, but it is always fascinating and ultimately rewarding.
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As each impressionist technique will give you different results, so it is important to choose one that will help you to emphasise the beauty of the flower or express the emotion that you want to capture. As a photographer and artist you need to find ways of interpreting the subject and adding your personal style to the work. Photograph your flowers at different times of the day. Spend time to observe and study your subject and look at how light affects its appearance. This is an essential process to help train yourself to capture what you see rather than what you think you see. Start by looking first for the flower’s basic form, and then pay attention to all details. You may find this process difficult at first, but with a bit of practice, it will become a habit. Remember that you are trying to achieve an impression, rather than a copy of your flowers.
The next very important step is to find the right composition. It is seldom that you can find a perfectly composed scene in front of you. More often there will be elements in the scene that may catch your eye. Sometimes these elements are so subtle that you need to work very hard to really emphasise them.
Everyone has their own way of photographing, and no two ways are the same. There is no right way; if it does not work for you, and no wrong way if you like the effect. Be honest with yourself when evaluating your images. Always look for improvement; gradually your skills and confidence will grow.
Impressionist photography is full of small victories, but the best reward is always the joy of doing it!
Tips to remember
– Don’t compare yourself with other photographers. You will never see their failures.
– Carry a spray bottle to create some interesting effects by spraying droplets of water.
– Try to go on a photo shoot when you are relaxed and have time to spare.
– Don’t let frustration keep you from experimenting.
– Celebrate your victories and learn from your mistakes.
If you would like to learn about impressionist photography techniques check out my FREE e-book and inject a little poetry into your photographs.