Wildflower Photography


In this post regarding wildflower photography, I’m going to go over the equipment and post-production I used to get these photos of wildflowers. These wildflower photos were all shot on a recent trip to Northwest Arkansas. Some of the flowers were growing along the side of the road, while others were shot while on a long trek down a creek bed.

The camera I used for these shots was my Canon EOS 5DS. The 5DS is a full-frame camera body with a 50.6-megapixel image sensor. The lens I used was one of my favorites for close shooting, the Canon EF 28-135 mm Macro Zoom. It is an older version of the lens I picked up from eBay for a  little over $100. It has more than paid for itself many times over. The lens doesn’t have any of the new features like image stabilization, but it does have fairly fast autofocus. The only negative I had about the lens was the lens creep when I first bought the lens used. However, by removing the rubber cover of the zoom ring and placing a couple of rubber bands on the ring, and replacing the rubber cover, it has just the right amount of resistance when zooming, and no creep. Sometimes a simple solution can save you thousands over buying a new lens.

These first couple of shots were taken along the side of a gravel road where we found these flowers in abundance. Notice in the second shot there is a spider hiding on the flower.

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Jerusalem artichoke

When doing wildflower photography, or any macro photography, it is much easier if you have a macro lens. The 28-135 mm macro lens I am using has a minimum focus distance of 18″. When you combine that short focusing distance with the 135 mm zoom you can get in extremely close to your subject. This next photo shows that clearly by looking at the apparent size of the bee on the flowers.

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The following photo is a very tiny purple flower we found while shooting landscapes at a scenic overlook. The blades of grass give some indication of just how tiny the flower was.

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These next few shots were taken while my buddy and I walked along a creek bed exploring. The wildflowers were blooming everywhere along the banks of the creek.

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Finally, we were driving along a path off-road when we came upon some passion flowers blooming. Back on the farm in Southeast Arkansas, we used to call them May Apples. Whatever you call them, they are really beautiful flowers.

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When I get to the post-production phase of wildflower photography or almost any of my photos for that matter, I use Adobe Photoshop. In the vein of full disclosure, I don’t get a dime from the link to Photoshop. I simply believe it is the best photo editing software if you want to take your photography to the next level. It’s also readily affordable, as you can pay a monthly fee of $10 a month and always have the latest software.

I shoot my images in RAW format. This is so I have the most image information to work with. If you only shoot JPEG with your camera, then you are losing valuable image information when the camera compresses the image to the JPEG format. I have a post about that you can read here.

Most people don’t think of doing wildflower photography in the fall. However, many flowers bloom in the fall and you can get some great wildflower photography during the fall before the cold months of winter set in. Get out there and try your hand at wildflower photography this fall.

If you want to learn more and take your photography journey to the next level, you might like the Photography Master Class. This video course will definitely help you on your journey to be a better photographer.

Check out more great photography tips on our Photography Tips & Tricks page.