How to Take Better Skagit Flower Field Shots

It’s that time of the year again where Spring beckons and photographers, after months of rain and gray skies, head to the flower fields to take photos of the blooms.DSC06614

I love this time of year.  Mud covered boots, trying to predict the weather, should I care about the geese flying over with malicious grins.  I am thankful when it comes around.  My happy meds were getting low.  Just kidding…Ok so on to the tips.  Likely you have a list of your own but here is mine:

  1. Predict the weather.   Its a serious bummer to get up to Skagit and its car wash raining.  So check out NOAA’s site or your favorite weather source for some clues. Now bear in mind that you may have to drive through several rain squalls to get to this bluebird promised land.  Don’t turn back just because its snowing in Everett. Being able to see Baker from Seattle is a good sign  🙂
  2. Prepare for mud.  This is farming country and getting to a nice photogenic spot amongst the fields will probably be muddy.  At least bring a second pair of shoes to change to.  Or, like me, bring some Sorels or Extra Tuffs.
  3. Shoot at Dawn or Dusk.  Shots like the one above were not taken at noon.  Whether you are taking broad field shots, flower closeups or swarming geese, your photos will be much better in soft dusk/dawn light.  Great lighting also saves you processing as they tend to look pretty good out of the camera.
  4. Scout for Photos During the Day.  Daytime isnt the light you want.  So spend the time driving around looking for where you want to be at dusk or the next sunrise.
  5. Be a Gracious Guest.  Skagit Valley residents are thrilled you are here.  They really are.  Be a good guest and watch where you park.  Don’t be the one everyone is pointing and laughing at because they basically stopped in the middle of a busy road to snap a geese shot.  Its not good for your photography Karma and just sours the experience for others.  Also, check out the awesome businesses in La Conner.  Galleries, eateries, great beer and people watching.  Its a great place to recharge.
  6. Take pictures for others. This is another Karma point.  Help others have a great time by offering to take their photo with their camera.  It spreads good will and helps us rid the earth of the Selfie Stick scourge.

…more later


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