Spring Photo Opportunities
No, this is not going to be a post about "cute cats", "cuddly little kittens" or "fabulous felines"!  But, looking at the photo, it's easy to understand why you might think that.  Despite all appearances, this blog post is actually an important reminder about looking for less obvious and more rewarding subjects when it comes to springtime photography.

One of our photographers was scouting-out spring photo opportunities the other day, when something occurred to her that should be an important talking point for all photographers at this time of the year.  After arriving at a local park with conservatory-like gardens overflowing with spring blooms, she quickly mounted her macro lens on her DSLR and began shooting picture after picture of the inside, outside and underside of all sorts of flowers.  Her results, although stunning, were somewhat cliché and expected.

Showing us her pictures, Emma said, "Yup, I got the highly saturated colors and beautifully crisp edges of many, many flowers from every imaginable perspective, but in the final analysis, the images were not as intersting and spring-like as much as they were - basically - overdone flower pictures."

Her macro shots of flowers were actually quite amazing - technically perfect.  We even plan to post several of them in our "Nature - Free Images and Wallpapers" section over the next few weeks.  But, she is correct about one shortcoming; the pictures do not really capture the essence of a very special season.  In a very real sense, spring is a time of rebirth, new horizons, hope, excitement, rekindled love, second chances and fresh perspectives.  However, when you mention the term "Spring Photography" to most people, the first...and only...thing that comes to mind are pictures of flowers.

Emma reminds us that, while spring photography can (and should) include fresh blooms and the birth of flora, there is so much more to be captured that speaks more sincerely to the spring season!  Look for photo subjects that answer these questions:  Beyond flowers, what else reminds you of hope?  How can you show the excitement of the season?  Who is experiencing "spring fever" - the kindling of the love spark?  These are the kind of questions photographers need to be asking and looking for answers to, as they go about their springtime photo sessions.

So...what about the cat?  Emma tells us that while she was lying on her side, photographing a frilly tulip from an interesting perspective, she heard something rustling in the tall grass behind her.  Something...or someone...was watching her work.  When she turned to see what it was, she saw that a cat was sitting quietly, taking-in the whole scene.  Emma realized that she was not only a photographer, but was also a subject and her act of photographing a spring flower was as much a part of "spring" as anything coming out of the ground.  She took it a step further.  "I suddenly realized that the picture of me lying on the ground, camera in hand pointed at a tulip, was an even more interesting springtime image than that of the tulip itself.  The cat, it seems, had a better understanding of spring photography than did I!"

Bottom line here?  Look around at how people, animals, nature and society in general interacts with the spring season.  You might just find that there's a lot more to spring than what's pushing out of the ground.

Happy shooting!



Barb G.
05/01/2012 19:06

Great pic of the cat! Looks like a stray, yet it still looks calm, cool, collected and "all-seeing" - quintessentially feline! I loved reading about your photographer's feeling that the cat had a better take on what constitutes a Spring photo than she did. How the image of her taking a picture of a spring flower was more interesting and spring-like than the picture of the flower itself. Perhaps the cat did understand this!!

Anyway, been there, done that. I've learned to take a step back and try to survey opportunities in a more wholistic manner before I try to begin shooting a thematic photo assignment. I usually end-up with less 'literal' and more interesting pictures.

Thanks for this great blog post and keep 'em coming. Thanks also for making your tips, lessons and articles available. I've learned a lot from your site and have passed it on to others in my camera club who have been similarly grateful! :)


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