Tulip Festival

Lighting Makes All the Difference! - {Tutorial}

One of my favorite things about living in Lehi is being so close to Thanksgiving Point and getting to take my littles there all the time. And my favorite thing about Thanksgiving Point in the spring is the Tulip Festival. It is the most beautiful place! I took the kids on Monday (and forgot a stroller...don't do that when you go), and we went back again on Tuesday with the hubs (and a stroller)! Can't get enough.

While I was there, I noticed a lot of people taking pictures of the flowers, of course. But from watching them, I also noticed that most people don't understand the difference that lighting makes.

Lighting makes ALL the difference.

It doesn't matter if you're photographing the prettiest flower (or the prettiest person). If the lighting is bad, the picture will be bad.  In general, the lighting is bad if it is coming from the same direction from which you are shooting. Think of the most unflattering cell phone pictures you can imagine. The flash was on, right? :) Lighting your subject straight on. Bad!

To illustrate this point for you by using flowers as my subject, I walked around the gardens and took pictures of flowers once with my back to the sun (bad!) and then walked around to the opposite side and shot into the sun (good!). Notice the difference that it makes:

thanksgiving point gardens white flowers mobie photo

See the difference? I love how the light shines through the white petals and gives them such dimension, whereas the leaves and stems on the first picture look especially non-dimensional (flat) and boring.

how to photograph flowers

Look at the highlights and shadows in those stems! See how the exact same subject looks like night and day in terms of photography quality, just because of LIGHT?!

Mobie Photo How to photograph flowers

I can't even believe this is the same little patch of flowers! The other thing I should mention is that I did the exact same computer edits across all of these files. So the difference is not in the editing - just the lighting!

Here are a few more pictures I took yesterday. Notice the direction the light is coming from vs. where I am:

I hope this is helpful next time you're taking pictures this spring.  Get away from that light source! :)