DIY Just Because

How to Photograph Flowers for Instagram

Vibrant orange, purple, peach, and green bouquet sitting in a window designed to showcase the flower's bold colors.

Flowers are always ready for their close-up. With a vast variety of colors and hues, gorgeous petals, and their ability to make any setting pop, flowers capture nature’s beauty. Gorgeous flowers combine elegance with simplicity and create memorable images that have long been popular in photography. With summer in full swing, there are countless opportunities to take great pics of summer flowers.

With today’s smartphones, everyone’s a photographer. However, without the best light and knowing how to set a composition, your photos of flowers might not be as beautiful as they could be. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with some tips on how to take ‘gram worthy photos of flowers that will be earning you likes and entertaining your family and friends.


Find Your Light

Step one for taking flower photos is find the best light source.

This is the most important step for any photograph. Every experienced photographer understands the importance of finding the right light. Without the right light, a picture can be too dark, washed out, or filled with glare. You want great pictures, not images reminiscent of the early days of the internet. Try both indoor and outdoor locations, the most important part is to experiment. Try different angles and locations until you find the one really brings out the beauty of your Bouq.

Remember even professional photographers will move subjects around to find the best interplay of light and shadows. Don’t hesitate to experiment and try some different areas of your home or the outdoors. Soft, even light is often the best bet because that brings out the colors of your blooms and doesn’t cast distracting shadows. If you’re a beginner and have the, a good experiment is to photograph the same angle and location at different times of day to notice the difference in daylight and how it affects your photos.

Tip for the adventurous: Try photographing outside during the “golden hour.” The golden hour is right after sunrise or before sunset. The light is naturally soft and photographers have long found this time to be perfect for taking photos outdoors.

Keep It Simple

Step two for taking flower photos is keeping the shot simple

When in doubt, minimalism works great. If you keep a neutral background, the vibrant colors of your bouquet will stand out. You want your flowers to be the star after all, not the fingerpainting lessons from nieces and nephews displayed on your fridge (highlight those in a different post). When you ant to bring out the colors in your blooms, experiment with different neutral backgrounds.

Certain neutral colors bring out the best in bright colors. For example, grey tones really make pinks pop. Wood or burlap tones pair well with blues. Once you try different combinations, you’ll start to get a knack for selecting the right background for each flower arrangement.

Play With Angles

Step three for taking flower photos is playing with angles to find a great, unexpected shot

While a simple, horizontal shot seems the most obvious to beginners, consider how hange the angle creates unique photos. Overhead angles can generate unexpected, captivating images. Place the flowers higher than the camera and shoot up. This can create unconventional photos that capture rarely seen beauty in certain blossoms.

The great thing about having a camera on your photo is that you aren’t limited to rolls of film. Take a lot of pictures and examine them to find new ways to shoot the same bouquet.

Get Closer

Step four for taking flower photos is getting really close for close ups to illuminate the fine details.

The beauty in many flowers lies in their intricacy and detail. Discover some great photos by getting close and photographing those details. Some flowers have a depth of color that comes out when taking close-ups, while others have intriguing fractal-like patterns that emerge once you get up close and snap some images.

Keep a Steady Hand

Step five for taking flower photos is keeping still to not blur the shot.

Nothing can ruin a perfectly composed photo like shaking your hand when you’re snapping the picture that ends up as a blurry smear, like a dropped ice cream cone. To ensure the best photos stabilize yourself. You can use both hands to stay still or you can take it up a notch by using a step-stool or a tripod.

Crop Your Photos

Step six for taking flower photos is cropping an image to make select the best image

Don’t feel limited to the exact image you took. Sometimes you can enhance your photos by cropping them to different sizes. You can magnify certain fascinating elements and guide the viewer’s attention where you want it by careful image cropping. Make sure you fill the frame. If you want to use negative space, do it intentionally not because of the default dimensions of your camera.

Take Your Flower Photos to the Next Level

Photos With a Purpose

Close-ups make great phone backgrounds. If you’re looking for a quick and playful new background for your phone, try a close-up of your favorite bloom. Think about what makes each flower unique. What is the floral architecture of each type of bloom? You can kick it up a level by playing with these details across different blooms.

Get Creative With Composition

Once you’ve mastered (or at least feel proficient) in the neutral background and close-ups, try integrating some complementary objects. Advanced composition of photographs takes into account the background as well as the foreground. Try a few carefully selected, complementary objects in the background of the flowers.

Sometimes these might appear naturally in the right conditions. For instance, if a bee or hummingbird starts buzzing around your big, red blooms, that can make a great spontaneous photograph. Or you create your layered photograph. Shoot from a low angle Try capturing a setting sun or textured clouds in the background that complement your bouquet.

Experiment With Filters Sparingly

Filters, especially ones that can adjust hue, saturation, and sharpness, can bring out the best in your photos. But use filters and apps sparingly. You can quickly make an image look too unnatural or modified. The best way for beginners to use filters is to make subtle alterations. Don’t change the composition, but fine-tune the shot to bring out more drama.

Of course, you can also use filters and apps to create specialized images. Maybe you want to try turning your photograph into a watercolor painting or collaging your flowers with other images with a stylish mashup. If that’s your plan, go for it. Just be intentional with your filtering and your images will shine.

Rule of Thirds, the Golden Ratio, and Negative Space

Quite a headline right? This focuses on using time-tested guidelines to arrange your composition. The rule of thirds is known in photography for dividing an image into a 3×3 grid. Use the lines of the grid to place your subject in the photo.

The rule of thirds taps into a principle known as the golden ratio. A rule of proportions that has been found to produce aesthetically pleasing results for thousands of years. The Parthenon in Greece is designed around the golden ratio and so are many famous works of art, particularly those of Da Vinci. The golden ratio (roughly 1.618) can also be found in flowers themselves.

These guidelines can help arrange negative space and draw attention to the focal point where you want viewers to look.

Try a Theme

There are some hashtags specifically designed for themes. For lovers of books and flowers, check out #bookstagram. #bookstagram posts focus on matching the cover of a favorite book with an appropriate composition. Flowers make excellent teammates for book covers that emphasize certain colors or textures. #nature is a great hashtag if you want to venture out and take photographs of fields of wildflowers. If you love finding the right picture and not leaning on filters, #nofilter is the perfect hashtag for you.

With these tips, you’re well on your way to create flower photographs that will earn you likes and praise. If you want to progress further, you can start experimenting with different arrangements. Ikebana, the Japanese art of arranging flowers,  produces some phenomenal arrangements and you can also read our tips on flowers you can pair with roses. When you a few more blooms for new photos, don’t forget to check out our best-selling bouquets.

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