How to photograph bluebells

Wildlife photographer Ross Hoddinott shares his expert tips for photographing beautiful bluebells. 

Bluebells in woodland.

A vibrant display of bluebells is an unmissable spectacle. From late April to mid-May these delicate purple blooms carpet woodlands, churchyards and gardens across the UK – and are irresistibly photogenic.

Bluebells are the ideal subject for beginners – and even a camera phone will do.

Time your visit for when a display is at its peak.

On bright, overcast days light is naturally diffused, making it easier to capture colour.

But early morning and late evening sunlight can create magical conditions in a woodland.

After rain is also good – not only will it pep up the flowers, but the droplets add sparkle to any photo. 

1 Seek the best Any flaws or signs of age will be highlighted in close-up. Only photograph specimens in pristine condition.

2 Get down low A low perspective will help you produce natural-looking photos, but take care not to damage flowers if kneeling.

3 Beware of clutter Scrutinise the backdrop – twigs and leaves will look messy and be distracting. A shallow depth of field will throw backgrounds attractively out of focus.

4 Reflect some light Natural light is best, but sometimes needs a boost. Use a piece of white card or tin foil to reflect light onto the subject and relieve any dark shadows.

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