Friday, February 18, 2011

Flower Photography

E. Louise Marillier ~ Peonies, 1912
[Art Gallery of New South Wales]
To anyone who is fond of flowers this is one of the most interesting branches of photography, although not without its many difficulties. At the request of the editor of Photo-era I will tell, by describing my modus operandi, how some of them may be overcome.

One of the most essential things required is a good background. I have several which I have painted in oil-colors on artist's large-sized canvasses. My favorite is shaded from rather light gray to warm gray-brown.

Flowers should always be gathered fresh and put into water for two hours before arranging them. This is best done on a deal-top table; it is a trying ordeal and sometimes much patience is required. As it is very difficult to get the blossoms and foliage into satisfactory focus, a little wire or a pin has to be resorted to if the exposure must be long, for I find the flowers are inclined to move...

Photo-era magazine, The American Journal of Photography Volume XXII, January 1909, to June 1909, published by Wilfred A. French

Photographer unknown ~ Hibiscus, ca. 1915 

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