Friday, March 28, 2014

Spring Medly: Spring Nature Photography Tips

Spring Nature Photography

So, depending on where you live, it is either already Spring or just about to become Spring. The photographer's year restarts, flowers bloom, and suddenly even people who aren't nature photographers want to be outside. The calendar turns.

The return of warmer temperatures means that there is a flurry of animal activity happening, providing ample opportunity for even the off-season photographer to snag a few nature pics. But, let's be honest with each other - you probably aren't excited about producing the same trite images of daisies you captured when you first picked up a camera at age 12. Indeed, there is more to Spring nature photography than flower buds.

Think about the changing season.

Spring hasn't begun in earnest yet where you live? Good! A world in flux makes for interesting photographic opportunities. Here, dried winter leaves are rendered against a background of soft spring green. Strong golden backlighting brings more interest to the picture, evoking in the viewer a sense of sunrise, of the beginnings of spring.

Remember that with spring blooms come the animals that rely on them.

You didn't really think I was going to publish a post about spring without including photos of insects, right? While I love detailed macros of insect life (see my post here), spring gives an abundance of opportunity to capture insects interacting with their environments. 
Here you can see a bee sneaking nectar from the base of a flower.
There is a strong tendency in nature and macro photography to get as close as is physically possible to your subject. While this technique also produces stunning images, don't forget to add variety to your work by stepping back one in a while.
I particularly love the metallic blue of the insect against the pink flowers.
Try to incorporate contrasting colors into your photographs.

Spring is full of so many colors, it can become a bleary visual racket. If possible, make use of your color wheel and try to compose images with colors that belong to the same family. Or, be even more daring (ooh!) and combine contrasting colors to add spark to your images.

White-Lined Sphinx Moth
Here you can see how the rich purple of the flowers plays against the orange-red warning markings on the moth. This contrast makes both colors appear more vibrant to the viewer.

Ok- that's all I've got; it's your turn now! Is it spring where you live yet? What is your favorite thing to photograph in springtime?

You can read last year's post about Spring photography here.

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