Photographing Bluebells

22nd April 2017
They are out!! That is the cry that goes up about this time of year when photographers of all levels make a beeline for woods and strive for that perfect bluebell photo; that wash of colour; the purest of blues.

Here are a few tips that can help achieve this.

1. Watch the weather and look for days when you have dappled light - sunny days with plenty of cloud cover - too much sun will bleach the colours and bring out the UV content in the flower heads. This often results in slightly washed out, pinky images. Bluebells are designed by nature to attract insects providing rich food. Insects view the UV content as yellows and pinks - film and, to a degree, digital cameras will 'see' this too in full sun, so scattered clouds are your allies here. The dappled light will create layered depth to the image and give a far more interesting result.

2. Bring the depth of colour out by slightly under-exposing the images - 1/3rd of a stop will usually do the trick.

2. Shoot from a low angle as this compresses the colours and creates that magical colour wash. This effect will increase the longer the lens length is - telephoto lenses compress distances and this will intensify the colour even further.

4. Shoot using a slow speed, tripod mounted, and gently move the camera horizontally to create an abstract wash of colour - this is a neat trick when there is a lot of dead twiggy interference!

5. Use a tripod to keep things nice and steady and get in close! Pick out an individual head or small clump. Use shallow depth of field to reduce background clutter. Choose a flower in shade with blurred sunlit flowers behind.

6. Use trees as frames, making the most of the acid greens and backlit leaves.

Enjoy this spectacular English moment of the year and come home with some lovely memories. Here are a few from out walk this morning.

Enjoy! Kay.

AND PLEASE REMEMBER: Stick to pathways, do not tread on the flowers and leave as you find.