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Learn From Your Back Yard

( Click on  all of the images to enlarge them.)

In your backyard when you look carefully you’ll see that there are so many items and things of nature that you can take. The back yard is also a great learning place to learn new techniques and also to photograph things that you may never have thought of in the past. It’s also a great place to learn more about your camera and not to be scared of it.

When we are pottering around in the backyard doing what we do, we walk past, and at times fail to see some of the gems in the back yard that are there. Photography is a wonderful art to get into  , it will expose you to many aspects of life that you may have not been aware of.

In the backyard I want to highlight the amazing ” flower ‘ The flower is such a diverse subject as there are just so many different forms of flowers and if you have a backyard.The flowers that you may have blooming in your yard may be very different from across the fence to your neighbours. If you don’t have a backyard, try down your local park.

( How did I take this shot with a dark back ground? It wasn’t hard. This was a morning shot and the blackness is the shadow behind where the sun hasn’t reach the background. The exposure was taken from the flower . If I had taken this shot on auto, then the flower would have been over exposed and the background would be more exposed. On auto the camera tries to get a balance of both flower and dark background which is what you don’t want . The end result of that would have been awful on all levels.Knowing how to work your camera manually, you can over ride what the camera is telling you want to do in auto. In manual you are telling the camera what to do.)

This flower that I have decided to photograph  is an Australian native in the Proteaflora family called ‘ So Exquisite ‘.Such a fitting name for this flower.For much of the year it looks plain but when spring pops around this wonderful act of nature comes alive with the most wonderful and exquisite flower and the colors are stunning.

The reason I have highlighted this native flower is because it is very unusual and stunning on so many levels. It doesn’t have the traditional flower shape as you might expect in flowers, but rather it is wire like in its presentation.Delicate in all of its forms and shapes.It takes on so many different stages and forms before the final flower is revealed in its fullness.

What you see here in this blog are the various stages of the flower slowly changing until it is in its bloom where it show cases the most stunning colors and complex acts of design.Nature always amazes me with its complex designs, complex structures within structures and at times we just either don’t notice it or just take it for granted.

Finding items or acts of nature in your back yard will give you an added appreciation to the wonders of nature and will inspire you to look beyond the back yard to discover other acts of nature.

With this flower there are so many different stages to it and when you see the bud parts of the flower, you are totally blown away to what the final flower looks like. There are just so many different transitions that take place from one section to another. Looking at the tiny buds that this flower comes from you would never have thought that it would look like what it does when the act of creation is completed. It is no wonder we all marvel at what  nature show us.


Spring is an amazing time in your front or backyard.Photographing flowers you need to pick the right day as you need no wind to do justice to what you are taking. All of these images of the flower is taken with my Canon 100mm 2.8 macro lens, non L series along with the Canons 6d mark 2. You will need to be patient as waiting for a day with no wind, or waiting for the wind to cease can test your patience. If you want great results, the best time to photograph flowers is when you have no wind. There are no short cuts with this. If you want results that will set you apart from others, or results that will leave you in awe, then no wind is a key factor. it’s a major factor. Early morning or late in the afternoon are ideal times to take flowers as the light is not harsh.


There were moments, I had to wait some time to get the shot that I wanted without the wind. I’d set up my gear and will be in the process of capturing the images and the wind would spring up. At times it would just be a gentle breeze but that is enough to force you to wait until it stops. When you take close ups, a very gentle breeze can look like a very strong breeze when you look through the camera.

The image above shows the same flower in different stages. I wanted to show the contrast from before the bud starts to open and the slow progress as when it starts. It doesn’t end there. The different stages of this flower are so complex and yet it opens with grace and no confusion in mind. When photographing flowers if you can find a section that shows various stages it is always good to show the contrast and this also gives you a greater understanding of the complexities of nature.

The third picture down from the top, does the same things, showing various stages of this flower.

All images were taken with natural light ( no flashes used) and one tripod.

When you get your camera out and start looking at nature from a very close point of view, that is when surprises will be opened up to you and that will inspire you to go deeper into the wonderful acts of creation.

If you want to learn to take flowers better, then jump on board to the Art of Flower photography workshop.

Pete Dobré

Author Pete Dobré

Pete's photography is self taught. As a young child photography was an interest. His passion for the varying landscapes of Oz comes from frequent visits as a youngster, to his Gandparent's sheep farm in Barmera, a small country town in South Australia. Pete Dobré is a Freelance Photographer who blazes the trail for 6 months each year, capturing awe-inspiring images. Pete's work expresses his creative flair, emotions and love for the natural scapes of Australia. He remembers the hot day when he was 8, leaving town for the farm. His parents had an old car. Within about 2 kilometres of reaching the farm gate, they were bogged on a small red sand dune. The flies were buzzing continuously and the heat was beating down. Sticks, leaves and branches were wedged under the back tyres, to get the car moving. His mum was in a panic but Pete thought that it was exciting. From that moment he knew that he loved being out in creation, with the sense of adventure in the wild. This is where Pete's passion began. Photography for Pete is an expressive means for visual communication. He says, 'There is never a boring moment in my work. There is always something to photograph and I love being creative. The only limit to creativity is a lack of creativity.' Pete's aim as a photographer is to present images that provoke and stimulate the mind, to capture God's awesome creation and to share this with others. If Pete can do a little justice to God's creativity, then he is quietly satisfied. As a photographer Pete's inspiration and passion for his work comes from knowing God who created everything in the beginning. Knowing God, the Creator gives more substance and meaning to what he captures on film. Pete sees his role as freezing a moment in time and history which will never be repeated exactly the same again. The light, clouds and seasons will always be different. Pete's love for natural conditions at different times of the day, displaying varying moods and cloud formations makes his work very special and eye catching.

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