How to get the best from a bluebell session

It’s such a beautiful time of year when the bluebells and the blossom both appear in our woodlands and parks and it suddenly feels like Spring is here . Did you know that the UK is home to almost 50% of all the bluebells in the world? I’m delighted to be offering bluebell mini sessions this year and thought it might be helpful to provide some suggestions about how to get the best from your session. These tops tips are hopefully also of use if you’re out and about taking your own photos of the bluebells.

Bluebells are a protected species. We’ll ensure that we take care not to damage the bluebells and that whilst it might look like clients are siting in the middle of them, we actually just make use of paths and clever camera angles. If you’re out and about in woodlands please take care to stick to paths and avoid allowing your small people to pick the flowers (they’re poisonous so another good idea why not to!)

What to wear. The woodland that we will shoot is is full of greens alongside the purpler-blue of our flowers and so ideally  your clothing needs to complement this colour scheme. I’d suggest you try to stick to neutral colours including creams, pinks and greys and avoid any patterns or tops with logos on. Spending just a few minutes outfit planning can make a huge difference to the quality of your final image and is especially important if you’re going to be investing in printing and framing your shots. The palette below gives you an idea for the types of shades that would work with a woodland and bluebell filled landscape.

Keeping warm. I shoot towards the end of the day to make the most of the best light – it’s too harsh in the middle of the day and you tend to get bright faces and dark shadows. This means that in the woods it can be a bit damp and cool for our shots. It’s worth thinking about how to keep you or your small people warm throughout the session. Extra layers are really helpful and thinking about any jackets or cardigans complimenting the outfit you’ve chosen is also worth doing. We’ll keep moving throughout the mini session so there won’t be too much time to get cold!

If you’re shooting bluebells. Heading off with family or friends to capture some bluebell shots? It’s worth thinking about the following to get the best from your camera or phone…

Composition. Fill the frame with bluebells by shooting from above or towards a slope or get low on the ground and shoot through the flowers. Either way be careful not to crush them and position your subject on a path or clear area.

Light. Woodlands are tricky to shoot in. Think about your time of day to maximise the light, the direction that the light is coming from and how you can illuminate your subject to avoid them being in shadow. Light from behind a subject can be beautiful, especially at golden hour – but you’ll want to put your subject facing towards the edge of the woodland to allow enough light on to their face.

Editing. All those greens and purples can create a colour cast on your subjects face. You might need to do some editing after the shoot to correct this and get a more natural finish.

Whether you’re joining me for a shoot or heading out with your own camera or phone to capture some images, I hope you found this useful and that you create some wonderful shots.

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