Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Exploring with a Camera: From a Flower's Point of View (2nd edition)

[Author's Note: Through the summer months Exploring with a Camera will be "Second Edition" postings of previous explorations with some new images. You will find a new link up at the end of this post to share your photos, and your photos are also welcome in the Flickr pool for the opportunity to be featured here on the blog. I hope that you will join in!]

Have you thought about the flower's point of view before? What is the perspective, near to the ground, reaching for the sun? The answer is found in these photographs. I had a marvelous time, playing around with my camera from a flower's point of view. I got a couple of amazing shots, like the one above and the one below. They are delightful because they are so unplanned, they are the results of experimentation and play. And digital photography is a WONDERFUL medium for this, because there is no cost to just play around!

There is creative power in exploration and play. I'm thinking to post some "Exploring with a Camera" ideas like this from time to time, let me know if you want to participate and I'll create a Flickr group to share photos so that we can create a little community of explorers!

So here are some tips on how to explore from a flower's point of view:

1. Hold the camera near the ground, pointing up toward the flower. You are not looking through the viewfinder, at the screen, anything. Depending on your camera/lens minimum focus requirements you will have to play with distance to hold the camera away from the flower.

2. Shoot, review, shoot, review. Move the camera, the angle. After a while you'll get a better hang of what you are aiming for remotely.

3. If you're not getting the focus you want (say, on the flower), switch to a manual focus point. For the second image above, I set the focus point for top middle point, then took a bunch of pics moving the camera around a bit to get the one flower in focus that I wanted.

4. Play around with aperture. Higher aperture will give you a better opportunity to get what you want in focus. Lower aperture will really help your flowers pop, but focus will be difficult.

During the whole process, delight in the randomness of the images. Laugh at the ones that came out totally awkward. Swoon over the ones you think that come out amazing. Enjoy the freedom that comes out from letting go of planning, composing, deciding with every shot.

Since writing the original post, I've come to enjoy using this technique on a regular basis. The lead-in image of this post is from the Scottish Highlands, near Loch Ness. I wouldn't have chosen the framing or focus of this image with my eyes on the viewfinder, but I like it anyway! Here are a couple of other more shots I've captured, using the same principles to see things from a different point of view. 

Now it's your turn, have fun playing and link in below or put your images images in the Flickr pool. I look forward to seeing the interesting points of view you find!

FYI - Links will be moderated. Please ensure that your linked image is on topic, and include a short explanation of how it relates to the current theme. Link back to this site through the Exploring with a Camera button (available here) or a text link. Thanks!


  1. This sounds like so much fun! Yay flowers!

  2. I love the leaves in the last one. Beautiful autumn colours and a great perspective.

  3. Oh I love doing this...and will take the opportunity to take some new shots over the next few days.

  4. love this kat, i'll be getting down low later in the week and see what i come up with!

  5. Thank you for hosting. I’m a follower, and this hop is found on a page on my site that lists more than 250 hops, memes, and photo challenges… some for each day of the week. Check under the header for the link to that page. I’ve also just started a BlogFrog community that focuses on hops, carnivals, memes, and photo challenges. Go to to visit & participate.
    I hope you’ll visit me soon. I follow back!

  6. I love the leaf perspective on the last one the best, but I do love closeup photos of flowers so much. These are great! :)

  7. These are wonderful photographs Kat, and thank you for the tips!!
    It is truly appreciated.

  8. Oh yes, Kat. Getting on low is just great fun. I've been doing that with grasses more than flowers recently while watching them wave in the wind.

  9. I'll try anything once :-)
    Good to see some points re-inforced.
    We do tend to forget.

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  11. Thanks for the good idea - it was liberating! And I even got a few cool shots (see them at flickr: tpurk photostream) or on my blog

    Thanks so much for the inspiration!

  12. I so love the last shot. Gorgeous!

  13. This is a fun one, Kat. Love your shots of the leaves!

  14. Great promt. Love your leaves. Have a great day.

  15. Really love the shot of the flowers among the barb wire. Great shot of the leaves also!!
    Enjoy your day!!

  16. What a fun linky! Just wanted to let you know that I am starting a new feature on my blog for bloggers who host linkups. As I stumble across more and more linkups I am trying my best to spread the word. You can check out all the details at this link.


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