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The Art of Flower Photography

Lesson 1 of 16

Introduction: Why Take Pictures Of Flowers

Kathleen Clemons

The Art of Flower Photography

Kathleen Clemons

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Lesson Info

1. Introduction: Why Take Pictures Of Flowers
In the first lesson, meet the instructor and gain insight into why flowers make an excellent subject.

Lesson Info

Introduction: Why Take Pictures Of Flowers

This class will be valuable for you whether you're a beginner, a more advanced flower photographer. I think I can show you some techniques and some different ways of photographing flowers. We're going to start with gear and lighting and I'll show you exactly what I use when I visit a garden or even shoot at my own home. We'll talk about composition, exposure, and I'll spend some time talking about specific flowers and best practices to photograph them. And I want to teach you how I see a flower. So let's start with why flowers. Why would anybody want to shoot flowers. I think every beginning photographer starts with flowers at some point. I'm attracted to flowers because of their color, shape, lines, and textures. And especially their curves. I didn't start out planning to be a flower photographer. I started shooting sunrises on my front lawn. I had a busy life with three little children and found that if I got up before they did and my house faces east that I could shoot sunrise. And ...

I had one lens. That taught me actually, a lot about photography. It taught me about light and how quickly light can change. And I understood composition quite well. I seem to have a natural eye for composition but I did not understand aperture. So I took a photography class online. I'm a big believer in online education. And the first week of the class I ended up in a hospital with a stubborn kidney stone. For four days. Got out of the hospital, it's mean, it's February, and I need to choose a subject to shoot for aperture. My husband had bought me roses and that changed my life. I became just fascinated with flowers and it was a wonderful subject to learn aperture on. Seeing how close I could get, what a different... What F2.8 would do? What F8 would do for the flowers? And the more that I studied them the more I fell in love with them. And sort of turned into a specialty for me though it wasn't anything that I planned.

Class Description


  • Choose the right macro lenses
  • Build the ideal photography gear kit
  • Find (or create) the best light for macro shots
  • Know where to place small objects in the frame
  • Set the correct aperture and exposure
  • Master close focusing with depth of field
  • Confidently capture macro work of any type of flower


Flowers are the perfect subjects for both beginning and professional photographers alike. Not only can they be found almost anywhere, but they offer a wide range of colors, textures, and shapes to explore and experiment with. But as perfect as flowers are for photography, the dominance of similar pictures makes it hard to capture a unique image.

This course takes you on an in-depth journey into the glories of flower photography, with expert photographer Kathleen Clemons as your guide. You’ll learn everything you need to know to take captivating shots that will wow your audience and celebrate the beauty of nature. Learn how to take flower photographs that stand out.

In this class, you'll learn how to spot the best flower to photograph with your naked eye, whether you want to capture artistic or documentary images. The flower will become the star of the shot as you learn to eliminate distractions in the background. At the end of the class, work confidently with fields of flowers and single flowers, at each stage in their life cycle.

Whether you have a Nikon, Canon, Sony, or mirrorless camera body, Kathleen will show you all the essential tools of flower photography, from macro lenses to plant clamps to extension tubes. She’ll cover technical details such as aperture settings and your depth of field, as well as stylistic issues such as composition, backgrounds, and close-up or macro shots. The course ends with a demonstration of a real shoot in a garden so you can see Kathleen in action as she takes different angles and close-up images of different flowers and flower petals.


  • All levels of photographers interested in macro photography.
  • Photographers who want to learn how to shoot close-up images of small subjects.
  • Photographers who want to better understand special equipment for shooting macro and how to deal with difficult lighting situations.


Kathleen Clemons is a nature photographer known for her painting-like images of flowers. The Maine-based photographer works with Corbis and Getty images. While she's known for her photography, Kathleen also has a degree in education, which she mixes with her passion for flower to teach other macro photographers.



What a fantastic class! Kathleen Clemons' presentation was well-organized and offered exceptional how-to advice along with actual gear and beautiful slides which demonstrated her points. I felt as though she were talking to me personally and truly wanting me to be successful. Her explanations of technique, accompanied with video of her in the gardens using the camera was very helpful. In addition, I found her critiques most enlightening, and I learned a great deal about how to improve my own images from them. In short--this was an exceptional class, and Kathleen Clemons is an amazing teacher. I have watched the class twice and plan to purchase it for continued review and reflection. Anyone who wants to photograph flowers artistically needs this class. Thank you, CreativeLive, for this wonderful presentation by Kathleen Clemons.

Julianne Carlson

Thank you Kathleen for taking the time to share your wonderful knowledge and technique's with us through this 5 star course. Your breathtaking ethereal images are a true inspiration and I can't wait to get out there and practice with my new Lensbaby velvet. Not only was this course a wonderful tutorial for photographing flower subject but much of your instruction can be used when photographing all of nature. This is the best Creative Live class I have taken yet!

a Creativelive Student

Kathleen Clemons is a wonderful teacher who communicates a powerful passion for flower photography. I learned so much from her about how to see and capture the beauty of a flower using macro lenses. As I launched into this new area of photography, I felt equipped and free to experiment and learn and grow. As I looked through the viewfinder of my camera, it's almost as though Kathleen was right there with me - I saw how to focus in on one area of the flower, then another, and change aperture settings to impact the depth of field, and experiencing the intricate beauty of God's creation. The ultimate moments for me were the images captured as a result of everything I learned. I highly recommend Kathleen Clemons as a teacher and this amazing class, The Art Of Flower Photography. Review by Catherine Martin