Come and see the International Garden Photography of the Year (IGPOTY) exhibition at Wakehurst Place. And Philip Smith offers some top tips for photographing plants and water.
IGPOTY at Wakehurst Place
It was hot, my goodness it was hot, when we set up this year’s Wakehurst Place exhibition in the Millennium Seed Bank this week. It opened on July 17th and runs until September 20th.
Exhibition in the Millenium Seed Bank at Wakehurst Place
The exhibition showcases winners and finalists from four IGPOTY categories – the Beauty of Plants, Macro Art (winners only), Beautiful Gardens, and WiIdflower Landscapes. It’s always wonderful to come to Wakehurst – the wildflower landscapes in high summer are really among the most exciting places we visit. They shout ‘biodiversity’ in a riot of colour. But a very calm, quiet and wonderfully textured riot.
Visitors often take their cameras to Wakehurst in the autumn to capture the leaf colour but a visit now – when it first opens up in the morning – will provide you with a huge number of opportunities to photograph a vast range of wildflowers. Look out especially for the wildflower meadows on the way to the MSB - on your way to the exhibition in fact!
"Dew-drop mini-daisies" by finalist; Alan Bryant
Plants and Water macro project
We are now well into our new photo project category, Plants and Water – ironic as the weather here in the UK is turning into a long, hot, dry summer. But we always have the water lily collections and the plants at Kew are second to none.
"Waterlily" by Tony Keene. Commended.
Top tips for photographing plants and water
- Go out first thing in the morning to capture dewdrops. By 7.30am they will be gone.
- Reflections create symmetry but make sure the symmetry is well composed in the frame of the image
- Don’t wait for rain – it might not get here this month!
- Create still lifes with water indoors – get creative with soaked coloured papers, submerged plants, even iced flowers
- Try not to use a glycerine spray to mimic raindrops – the magazines often advise this technique – don’t – it’s rubbish!
- Don’t forget seaside and coastal plants – sea holly and horned poppies are strong shapes and are very photogenic
- Philip -
About Philip Smith
Philip Smith is a professional photographer specialising in gardens and plants with 15 years’ experience. His photography has featured in many magazines and books including The English Garden, The Garden (RHS) , and Gardeners’ World. His work has also featured in exhibitions at Kew Gardens and the Royal Horticultural Society at Wisley and London.
As co-founder and Managing Director of the International Garden Photographer of the Year Philip is responsible for the world’s premier competition in the field, which culminates in an annual exhibition at Kew Gardens and other venues. Philip is the author of Better Plant and Garden Photography.
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