ARS Feature Article:
The Easy Guide to Shooting Pictures of your Roses –
Just for Fun

by Bob Bauer

Have you ever been wandering around in your garden and spotted a bloom that truly amazed you or even broke your heart, it was so beautiful? You know: a single flower or a cluster at the perfect point in time, the best bloom you had ever seen on that bush? All that's left now of that rose is the good memory.

It doesn't have to be that way. You can shoot a photo of your wonderful rose and preserve that bloom forever. Grab a camera, get out there and capture that perfect moment. Do it just for YOU. And do it just for the fun of it.

Photography is easier than ever, thanks to the invention of digital cameras. For as little as $200, you can buy a digital camera that will give you great results with just a little effort.

These cameras all have auto focus, auto exposure, autolight color balance and enable you to just point and shoot. You can even fix your mistakes later on the computer and print your own pictures at home. You don't even need a computer! You can take your reusable camera memory card to the local drugstore and get prints and a CD to sore the digital images forever.

Ten Easy Tips for Shooting Great Rose Pictures

  1. Shoot in any light, but keep the sun at your back for best results. The more light the better. (A tripod will help you, but isn't a must.)
  2. Use the viewfinder only (NOT the TV screen at the back) to frame your picture.
  3. Fill the whole frame with the rose; don't just put the rose in the middle. Make sure to look at the edges of the frame as everything you see will be in the picture.
  4. Wind is bad, so shoot in the morning in order to avoid it.
  5. Shoot it NOW! Keep the camera by the back door ready to go. Your bloom will NOT wait for you.
  6. Turn the camera 90 degrees and shoot a vertical picture once in a while. Half the world is vertical.
  7. Look at the rose from different angles before you shoot. Walk around it a bit. Don't just march up to the plant and fire away.
  8. Watch out for mottled light and shadows. They will show up as ugly blotches.
  9. Include multiple blooms or buds in the same picture, not just single blooms all the time. Move the camera around while you are looking through it and pull the trigger when it looks right.
  10. Throw away the rule book and play around a bit. Feel free to screw up. It isn't serious.

A FEW Camera Buying and Technical Tips

  1. Buy a camera with a close up lens or close up capabilities.
  2. Get a camera with at least 5 megapixel sized images.
  3. Use the highest quality setting on your camera menu.
  4. Get a storage card (SD card) at least 1 gigabytes in size.
  5. Take a few minutes and browse your camera's instruction manual. (Most people don't!)

Remember, photographing is easy. It is a simple skill that can be learned by anyone. Everyone is creative; you just need to relax and tap into it. It's like riding a bicycle: if you mess up, simply get back on and try again. We only have to impress ourselves.

For tips on how to photograph red roses go here.

This article was provided to the TVRS as a courtesy by the American Rose Society.