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Creative Garden Photography by Harold Davis

Obregon Obregon

Is from: Southold, US
3065 posts

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Obregon Moderator Donor Ribbon. Awarded for his generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2014 Donor Ribbon awarded for his generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2015 Awarded for his in-depth knowledge and high level of skill in several areas.  Charter Member
Wed 14-Oct-20 04:09 PM
I often complain when photography books claiming to be how-to books appear to be as much portfolios as instructional manuals. However, the pictures from Creative Garden Photography so inspired me to go out and start shooting gardens that I have to recommend this book without complaint.

This book is about photographing not just gardens, but also flowers in all their glory, both indoors and outside. Although Davis does not burrow down into technical matters, he does mention subjects like exposure, focus and lighting, particularly as it applies to this subject matter. Most of his photographs are shot in HDR, using both automatic and what he calls hand-HDR post processing. He also touches on the equipment that one needs for this kind of photography, although to emphasize the opportunities, several captivating images were captured with a mobile phone. To make the best use of his advice one will have to have an understanding of one's own equipment and of tools like Photoshop and Lightroom.

There is a more detailed explanation of one of the author's specialties, light box photography, where one arranges flowers on a backlit background, to capture beautiful, glowing images. Although Davis explains some of the basic forms of arranging blooms on a light box, he recommends studying flower arrangement to get the best compositions.

Even though Davis writes clearly, the photographs were the heart of the book for me. Each image is accompanied by detailed explanations of the circumstances surrounding its making, including shooting data. I'm not certain how hard it is to take a bad photograph of Monet's garden at Giverny or the Luxemburg Gardens in Paris. Still I've been to many of the places that Davis has photographed and obviously missed a lot of opportunities. In fact, I wondered how I could have considered myself a landscape photographer and never ventured into the gardens of my friends. I could scarcely finish the book because I wanted to get out and start shooting in their back yards.

Whether you've been capturing images of flowers for a while, or never considered the world of flora, this book is a must buy.