Category Archives: Flowers

Flowers are in bloom, so grab your camera!

With spring transitioning into summer, many flowers are in bloom, with many more on the way. Whether your home is surrounded by flowers, you live near a botanical garden, or maybe you live in an apartment and don’t have room to grow flowers, but love to have a fresh bouquet on your table, there are plenty of opportunities to photograph flowers.

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There are a variety of approaches and techniques for flower photography – portraits, macros, abstracts and other creative methods for making stunning flower images that you’ll want to hang on your wall.

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Flowers: fine art photography techniques and tips is an e-book jam-packed with easy to follow instructions, lots of example images with descriptions on how they were made, and loaded with inspiration so that you can learn how to shoot your own fine art flower photos.

The new cover for my e-book.

The Details:

Flowers: fine art photography techniques and tips is all about fine art flower photography. It’s a guide that shows you how to create your own beautiful fine art flower images that you’ll want to hang on your wall. Through descriptions of techniques, equipment, and creative approaches, I describe easy to follow instructions on how to create your own beautiful images. I also present many examples showing how I’ve applied these techniques and approaches in making each image shown in the book.

Available as a downloadable pdf e-book that can be read on any device that is capable of reading pdf files (e.g. iPad, Android tablet, Kindle, laptop and desktop computers, etc.), Flowers: fine art photography techniques and tips is a full-colour 109 page e-book available for $8.95.

You can purchase Flowers: fine art photography techniques and tips from my website by clicking HERE or by clicking on the thumbnail below, which will take you to a secure shopping cart for your purchase.

To order a copy of Flowers: fine art photography techniques and tips, please click on the thumbnail above.

To order a copy of Flowers: fine art photography techniques and tips, please click on the thumbnail above.

Flowers: fine art photography techniques and tips is also available for purchase through the Earth & Light Digital Media website, along with other fantastic photography e-books.

Click on the link below to visit Earth & Light Digital Media.

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Blooms and Bittersweet

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As we approach the Victoria Day long weekend here in Canada, two things come to mind. Two things I love. One is flowers. The other is my Mum. I love the month of May because, in this part of the world, it is a time of rebirth. The trees are nearly in full leaf after the speedy burst of their buds. Our local wildflowers such as Trilliums, Purple Violet,  Dutchman’s Breeches, and a whole host of others are sporting their showy blooms. Two of my favourite cultivated flowers – Lilacs and Lily of the Valley – are also on the cusp of showing their fragrant and delicate flowers. The vibrant greens, blue skies, and busyness of the squirrels, birds and other creatures are also part of this time of rebirth. So, May is my month – my favourite month of the  year.

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For me, May also brings with it, some mixed feelings. Mother’s Day is in May. My parent’s wedding anniversary is in May. And, my Mum was born in May. When I see the beautiful blooms, so abundant during this wonderful month, I can’t help but feel a little bittersweet about them. They remind me of my Mum. She passed away two and a half years ago. Not only was she my best friend, but she was my soul mate. We used to describe ourselves as ‘two peas in a pod’ because that’s exactly what we were. In recent years, as I became middle-aged, our relationship blossomed, like the flowers she loved so much.

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Although we were mother and daughter, we had become more like sisters. In fact, for the 15 months that my Mum was ill and in hospital, and I spent time with her nearly every day, we had several occasions where new nurses would comment on how wonderful it was that Mrs. Ball’s sister would come to visit her daily. The new nurses were quickly informed that it wasn’t her sister visiting, but her daughter. Mum and I laughed when we heard this. And I told Mum that maybe some daughters would be offended by this (given our age difference), but I told her to enjoy it (implying that she looked young for her age, which she did) and that for me, it was actually one of the biggest compliments I could receive. She and I looked a lot alike, had the same sense of humour (i.e. zany, wacky) and the same vibrancy and love of life. During that last 15 months of her life, we didn’t even have to speak to know what each other was feeling, we were so ‘in tune’ with each other. Many a day we shed tears together, coping with the lousy situation that life had dealt my Mum. But after a few tears and some hugs, our sense of humour would overtake all and inside of 15 minutes, we’d be laughing, joking and enjoying each others company. It didn’t matter how bad the day had been. After a few minutes together, we’d be smiling and having fun.

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I know that I am supremely and exceptionally lucky to have had such a wonderful mother. I always knew it, even from a young age. My Mum was my role model, my hero, my biggest cheerleader, and my best friend. And as we aged together, we became soul mates. The most difficult thing I have ever had to face in life is saying good-bye to her. Losing the other pea in the pod. My Mum and I, together, made the decision to end her treatment to hasten her passing as there was nothing more the doctors could do for her. It was the right thing to do, to bring her peace and end her suffering. It was what she wanted and I wholeheartedly supported it, despite it tearing out my heart. I held her hand for 52 hours, until she took her last breath – an act that was both the hardest thing I have ever done and the greatest gift I could ever receive.

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The blooms that surround me this time of year bring me happiness and sadness – bittersweet. I love the sight of them, they are  cheerful. They also make me happy because they remind me so much of my Mum.  She was an avid gardener and absolutely loved flowers. They were her thing. Two of her favourite flowers were Lilacs and Lily of the Valley. As a kid, when I went for walks up at our cottage, I would always stop and pick my Mum a handful of flowers – Daisies, Brown eyed Susans, Bladder Campion, Queen Anne’s Lace and Yarrow – which she put in a small, red vase that my brother made from clay during school art class. And so, being surrounded by these May blooms also brings me a little sadness – a reminder of her physical absence from my daily life. A reminder of a broken heart that will never truly heal. But these sad feelings are more than balanced by the incredible gratefulness I have for the time we had together and the abundance of wonderful memories I have of her.

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And so, as the blooms surround me, Mother’s Day comes and goes, and my Mum’s birthday comes and goes, I smile and think of her, but with tears not far behind, if even for only a moment. I celebrate the incredible times we had together and all of the wonderful, happy memories by growing flowers all around my yard. And every time I see a flower in bloom, I think of her and smile.

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Filed under Flowers, Nature, nature photography, photography, Wildflowers

A Sea of Tulips – Photo of the Week

On Saturday I taught my fine art flower photography workshop. All I can say is WOW! Fabulous group of participants, flowers and colour galore, great light (cloudy with light rain and wonderfully vibrant colour saturation) and a wonderful day! Read more about it and see one of the images of our sea of tulips in my Photo of the Week.

Click on the thumbnail below to see 44th Parallel Photography’s Photo of the Week.

 

11 May 2013

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Filed under Creative Photography, Digital Photography, Flowers, Photo of the Week

Last chance to sign up for my Fine Art Flower Photography workshop

Do  you live near Ottawa – Canada’s capital city or are you coming here for the Annual Tulip Festival that has begun? This Saturday, May 11th, I’m teaching my half day workshop on fine art flower photography. I guarantee it will be a fantastic experience.

"To practice any art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow. So do it." - Kurt Vonnegut

“To practice any art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow. So do it.” – Kurt Vonnegut

The workshop is a half day and costs $95 (Canadian).

What you’ll get it for that is,

– personalized instruction

– small group size

– easy to follow instructions on fine art flower photography techniques

– lots of hands on practice and immediate feedback

– a copy of my e-book, “Fine Art Flower Photography: techniques and tips“, so that you don’t have to take notes during the course; you’ll have all of the information at your fingertips anytime you need it.

– a highly experienced instructor with an easy-going style and great sense of humour

– a ton of fun learning new photographic techniques and approaches

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If these things interest you and you’ll be in the Ottawa area, head to my website and register for my Fine Art Flower Photography Workshop! Only a few spaces left!

The new cover for my e-book.

My flower photography e-book

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Filed under Creative Photography, Digital Photography, Flowers, nature photography

Woodland Flowers for Earth Day – Photo of the Week

This week’s Photo of the Week celebrates spring, the beauty of nature, and Earth Day.

Click on the thumbnail below to see and read about 44th Parallel Photography’s Photo of the Week

20 April 2013

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Filed under conservation, Digital Photography, Flowers, Macro photography, Nature, nature photography, Photo of the Week, photography, plants, Wildflowers

Anticipating Spring – Photo of the Week

Photo of the Week is back. I’ve been fighting the flu for the past two weeks and haven’t had much energy to do except get myself through my work days. But I’m starting to feel a bit better and so finally, back to photography. Phew! I was going through withdrawal. 🙂

This week’s Photo of the Week is a portrait of a tulip, taken last year during Ottawa’s world-famous Tulip Festival. The beds of tulips provide a sea of colour and are a photographer’s mecca. Most of us here in Ontario have had enough of winter and are eagerly awaiting spring. So I thought I’d post something to help keep our spirits high, knowing that the lush greens and colourful blooms of spring are not far away.

This year I’ll be teaching my fine art flower photography workshop on May 11th, during the tulip festival. We’ll take advantage of the colourful blooms to learn different creative techniques for producing beautiful fine art flower images.

Click on the thumbnail below to see and read about this week’s Photo of the Week from 44th Parallel Photography.

16 March 2013

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Filed under Creative Photography, Digital Photography, Flowers, Macro photography, Nature, nature photography, Photo of the Week, photography, plants

Earth & Light Digital Media for photographers

Earth & Light is a fabulous new website dedicated to selling digital media resources for photographers. The site has just been launched by acclaimed nature and travel photographer and writer, Richard Bernabe.

Earth & Light has only just been launched but already has 9 photography e-books for sale, with tons more coming!

Some of the e-books at Earth & Light Digital Media

Some of the e-books at Earth & Light Digital Media

 

Book topics range from lighting, composition and other instructional books…

Richard Bernabe's book on composition

Richard Bernabe’s book on composition

 

Ian Plant's book on great lighting for landscape photography

Ian Plant’s book on great lighting for landscape photography

 

 

… to those focused on specific subjects, such as my flower photography book and Justin Reznick’s book on photographing waterfalls and streams.

My fine art flower photography e-book

My fine art flower photography e-book

 

Justin Reznick's book on photography waterfalls and streams

Justin Reznick’s book on photography waterfalls and streams

 

 

There are also books focused on specific locations, such as Richard Bernabe’s books about Iceland, the Great Smokey Mountains, and South Carolina.

Richard Bernabe's book on Iceland

Richard Bernabe’s book on Iceland

 

All books are very well-priced at under $10 U.S. and are great value for the money.

Earth & Light isn’t just about photography e-books, it’s about a variety of digital media resources for photographers. The site has only just been launched, but coming soon are apps, videos, screen savers and tutorials. So check back frequently because a lot of fantastic new products will be added!

 

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I’ll be posting regular updates on the latest additions for sale on the website so check back here regularly. You can also keep on top of what’s new at Earth & Light by tuning in to Richard Bernabe’ blog.

 

We hope you’ll stop by Earth & Light for a look. It’s a great one-stop-shop for digital media resources for photographers.

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Filed under Creative Photography, Digital Photography, equipment, Flowers, Landscape, learning, Macro photography, Nature, nature photography, Opinion, photography, technique, Vision

A new cover for my Flower Photography e-book

I’m happy to say that my e-book, “Flowers: fine art photography techniques and tips, has a new cover! It’s the same great book, but with a zoomier cover. And, not only is it available for purchase on my 44th Parallel Photography website, but it is now available through the fabulous new Earth & Light digital media website.

 

The new cover for my e-book.

The new cover for my e-book.

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Filed under Abstracts, Creative Photography, Digital Photography, equipment, Flowers, learning, Macro photography, Nature, nature photography, Photo-impressionism, photography, plants, technique, Wildflowers

Photo of the Week – Anticipating Spring

Click on the thumbnail below to see 44th Parallel Photography’s Photo of the Week

 

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Filed under Creative Photography, Digital Photography, Flowers, Macro photography, Nature, nature photography, Photo of the Week, photography, plants

Three Very Last Minute Gift Ideas for the Photographer and Nature Lover

Cane-02-iconHere we are, one sleep away from Christmas day. It’s a busy time of year and sometimes we find ourselves on the cusp of Christmas but still needing a gift or two. Don’t panic! If those last gifts are for either a photographer or nature lover, here are a few last minute gift ideas. And since they are downloads, you don’t need to worry about running out to a store and battling the crowds of  shoppers. You can simply purchase them, download them and then email the link or file to the person you’ve bought it for. Or, put it on a USB stick for them. Easy! But also great gifts.

Here’s an absolutely fabulous app that any photographer or nature lover would be happy to receive for Christmas:

POLE TO POLE by Paul Nicklen.

Paul Nicklen's app, Pole To Pole

Paul Nicklen’s app, Pole To Pole

http://paulnicklen.comPaul Nicklen's app, Pole To Pole

http://paulnicklen.comPaul Nicklen’s app, Pole To Pole

Paul is a wildlife and conservation photographer from Canada and produces some of the BEST wildlife images I’ve ever seen. He does a lot of underwater photography, producing both unique and visually stunning images. I recently purchased Paul’s app and was absolutely blow away by it! It would be an understatement to say that his photography is stunning. Some of his underwater images are mesmerizing, such the image below of  penguins swimming.

Image by Paul Nicklen

Image by Paul Nicklen

Not only is Paul a phenomenal photographer, but he is also a gifted storyteller. What I really love about his app is that he supports his great images with stories about what he had to go through to make the image. He also includes natural history in his writing, to give readers a better understanding of the species he photographs.

Paul Nicklen, Pole To Pole

Paul Nicklen, Pole To Pole

There are also some great video clips showing how Paul goes about getting his images  – all I can say is that this guy is dedicated! What he has to go through to get those amazing images!

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Paul Nicklen, behind the scene....

Paul Nicklen, behind the scene….

You absolutely cannot go wrong with this app  as a gift. Even if the person you are buying for isn’t a photographer, I still think they’d really like this.

Image by Paul Nicklen

Image by Paul Nicklen

Another app that you just cannot go wrong with is:

Jim Brandenburg’s, Chased By The Light

Jim Brandenburg's app

Jim Brandenburg’s app

This first came out as a print book, but I think the app is monumentally better. Not only does it tell the story of Jim’s adventure and self-challenge of only exposing one frame of film each day for 90 days, but many of his images are stunning.

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I also love that Jim’s app is interactive in that there are pages with imbedded video. It might include a short clip of him explaining why he made a certain image for that day or what the challenges were in making that image.

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There is also additional information imbedded in some of the images. You simply click on the “i” to bring up the additional info.

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And, if you love Jim’s images so much that you want one hanging on your wall, you can click on a link that will take you to his website where you can purchase a print. You also have the ability to share one of the images by clicking on the Facebook link.

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I would highly recommend this to nature photographers, but also anyone with  an interest in nature.

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And finally, I couldn’t end this blog post without including my own new e-book 😉

Flowers: fine art photography techniques and tips.

If you are buying for a photographer or a flower-lover who also enjoys photography, this is the book for them! I describe some very straightforward techniques for creating beautiful fine art flower photos.

My new e-book, a 109 page downloadable pdf, available on my 44th Parallel Photography website.

My new e-book, a 109 page downloadable pdf, available on my 44th Parallel Photography website.

It’s packed with vibrant images and many examples of putting the techniques into practice.

Sample page from Flowers: fine art photography techniques and tips

Sample page from Flowers: fine art photography techniques and tips

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I’ve also got a large section on creative flower photography.

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For anyone who loves flowers and loves to capture their beauty with a camera, this is a must-have.

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Filed under Amphibians, conservation, Conservation & Environment, Digital Photography, Featured Wildlife Photographer, Flowers, Landscape, Mammals, Nature, nature photography, Opinion, Wildlife Photography