10 tips for taking amazing bluebonnet pictures.
We have all seen the roadside blooms by now! They started early this year, as was touched on in a previous New York Times feature. The first bluebonnets in Austin were spotted in early February and now they are popping! Full bloom is expected in a couple of weeks. Here are the 10 tips for taking amazing bluebonnet pictures.
#1 Wait for full bloom:
It’s so tempting to want to get the picture before anyone else does. But, be mindful. If you crush the bluebonnets before they reach their peak, how will they reproduce the next time? Let them grow and seed and do their thing! Full bloom is hard to predict, and has a short life span, but plan according and you’ll be thankful. And, future generations of Texans will be thankful as well.
#2 Leave it better than you found it:
In other words, don’t pick em and don’t crush em y’all! Although most of us were taught in school that picking was illegal, it’s not. It was just what we were told to not ruin the beautiful fields. Also, don’t crush them. There are places in the flowers with a natural bare spot. Find that spot, then get the right angle. If someone has already crushed them, use that spot. Don’t trample a fresh spot.
#3 Get the right angle:
Get low, get high, get the shot. If you have multiple people in your frame, try to get eye level or right above eye level. This makes for a pleasing angle for portraits. If you are photographing a small child, it’s okay to get high and photograph looking down. It shows perspective and how they look up to you. It makes for an amazing shot.
#4 Avoid mid day sun:
Can you say squinty eyes? Not a good look for anyone. The Texas sun is bright during the middle of the day. It causes harsh shadows on the face and under the eyes. This is not a pleasing look if you are trying to capture people. Early morning as the sun is coming up, or late evening as it’s going down are the best times to take pictures. Cloudy days are great for large groups as it creates a natural even soft light. You can get away with shooting at any time throughout the day when it’s cloudy. You can read more here on the best times of the day taking portraits.
#5 Be prepared:
Blankets (to sit on), bug spray, a watchful eye, fully charged batteries, plenty of space on your memory card, fed and napped children, these are all things to keep in mind to help you be prepared.
#6 Dress for the occasion:
You’ll more than likely be sitting down in the grass (or on a blanket if your prepared). It’s HOT in Texas. Dressing in cool comfortable clothing will make everyone happy and if everyone is happy, you’ll capture better memories. You can read here for more information on “what to wear.”
#7 Be careful:
Always be careful where you walk, stand, and sit. You are on nature’s turf. Be mindful of all the critters that can be lurking. For example, fire ants, mosquitos, chiggers, bees and even snakes may be present. Before you sit down or sit your children down, look around. Always be mindful of your location and what is around you.
#8 Subject placement:
Be aware of the background and what’s behind your subject. It can be distracting and take away from the portrait. Things to keep an eye out for include buildings, wires and phone poles.
#9 Avoid the side of the road:
It can be tempting as the roadsides are covered in bluebonnets this time of year. It’s just not safe, especially for children. Don’t do it. With a little bit of effort, you can find plenty of spots in much safer locations.
#10 Location, location, location:
Scout it out before hand. Know the direction of the sun at the time you plan on taking pictures. Of course the main focus will be your subject, but when you are trying to capture the subject in bluebonnets, you’ll want a great location so you can capture both!
Hopefully you find these tips for taking bluebonnet pictures useful. However, if you would rather hire a professional (ahem), let’s chat.
All images can be purchased as a canvas or framed print to hang on your walls. They make a great one of a kind gift and look so much better off the computer screen.