This Saturday Deanna Roberts and I met up with some future macro-photography enthusiasts at the San Francisco Botanical Garden. The weather was everything a photographer could dream of. There was a thick layer of fog creating a giant sun filter that cast a nice even light down upon our subjects.The Botanical Garden is unique in that it is divided into different sections for the specific country or region. It’s made up of fifty-five acres of flowers, trees, and ornamental bushes. As we made our way around we saw everything from Coastal California Poppies to the Mesoamerican Cloud Forest.
Deanna and I started off with a crash course in the basics of photography. We examined how light plays in our exposure and how to set up for the perfect shot. Next we delved into composition and demonstrated how to create dynamic shots by positioning the camera in certain ways.As we moved along to the Cloud Forest we let the group wander around and use their newly learned techniques. We tried out different lenses and apertures to create a shallow depth of field and isolate our subjects. Deanna and I checked in here and there to critique and help with settings and composition.
Next up was the Succulent Garden! Like walking into a prehistoric time, the cactus and succulents towered overhead like dinosaurs of old. This was the perfect location for a group shot. We all gathered in the dense green flora and gave it our best. After our group shot we were accompanied by some hummingbirds from on high. They flew down to rest on a nearby branch and I gave the students a quick tutorial on shooting fast moving subjects. The students got some great shots and we had just enough time to finish up in one of my favorite areas with some wonderful iris, poppies, and ridged aloe plants.
Until next time,
Phil, DeAnna and the entire Aperture Academy team!
P.S. If you'd like to join us at one of our workshops, you can find the schedule/sign up here.