Dahlia day excitement

Claire Brown (Plantpassion) hosts workshops for flowery people, and sometimes invites me along to teach photography. Last week was one of my favourites - dahlias for florists. The field was bursting, we were allowed to pick our own to our hearts' content, and then the florists amongst us arranged whilst the less coordinated (me) drank tea.

I took the florists and their arrangements on a tour of Claire's farm, choosing good spots for photography. Key points to remember are: 1. light (direction & quality), 2. background (no distractions), and 3. viewpoint. 

Here are a few background examples. A field or lawn can make a great background. It has no distractions, and adds context:

photographing dahlias

Change your viewpoint slightly to change the background. This is exactly the same photograph as the one above, except the viewpoint has changed. 

photographing dahlias 2

Use painted plasterboard or foamcore for a very simple, plain background:

photographing dahlias 3

And don't be afraid to use seemingly industrial floorspace as a background. This is the view from Claire's barn:

photography background

And this is the unedited photo of this arrangement I took on my phone, without moving anything or adding any light. The trick is to fix the exposure at the time you take the photograph:

photographing dahlias

Do you need help with your photographs?

Join my free photography class and I'll send you a short, practical lesson by email every Thursday. It's also the place to find out about future in-person workshops. Register here:

dahlia day