Spring is almost here and the flowers are slowly reappearing in our North Holland landscape. That means that the tulips will also flower again. That's why we list the 10 best tips for the most beautiful tulip photos for you and those tips don't come from just anyone! Patrick Smit, better known on social media as @GROOVYPAT, explains how you can take such tulip photos with a smartphone!
Tip 1: Timing
Make time to photograph a beautiful tulip field. Take some pictures in the morning at sunrise or in the evening during sunset. They call photography around these times the "Golden Hour". Also take into account the weather forecast and temperature. If the temperature difference between day and night is large, there is a chance of fog in the morning. When there is a rising sun on these mornings, your tulip photos will become truly magical and fairytale-like!
Tip 2: Background
Consider what's in the background in your photo. In Holland above Amsterdam they have the most beautiful tulip fields, but sometimes there are large flower bulb companies in the background. This will not benefit your photo. The perfect combination is the combination of a tulip field with a windmill in the background. Then you create a top Dutch picture. You will find quite a few of these combinations in the Kop van Noord-Holland.
Tip 3: Composition
In the case of tulip field photography, stick to the so-called "Rule of Thirds". This is a composition rule that can contribute to a more beautiful photo. Before taking a photo, make sure your "grid" is on. This creates 9 equal areas with 2 horizontal and 2 vertical lines. I often use the following composition: two thirds of the photo is tulips and one third is the rest of the photo. Place a windmill or tree at one of the intersections and theoretically you have a top photo.
Tip 4: DOF
DOF is an abbreviation of "Depth of Field" or sharpness / depth. This means that the subject (the tulip) is in focus and the rest is blurred. This creates a cool effect and is a fun way to photograph tulips. Nowadays you have the so-called "portrait function" on many smartphones and it provides this effect. Very nice to experiment with!
Tip 5: To reflect
Normally most people are not happy with rain. However, if it has rained, it also causes puddles and this can provide beautiful photos with reflection during the tulip season. The rain often remains in the gullies between the tulips and if you hold your camera or smartphone almost to the ground, you can shoot incredibly nice pictures with the tulips in the reflection of the water. However, this takes a bit of practice and you probably won't keep your shoes and clothes clean, but if it works you will have a very special and cool photo!
Tip 6: The importance of a subject
In this case, a "subject" means a person. Besides the fact that photographing tulip fields is very cool in itself, adding a person gives an extra dimension and value to the photo. Working with people in a photo raises questions for the viewer and can make your photo more interesting.
Tip 7: Be respectful
With respect for the flowers, farmer, field, and with caution, I could take this shot without damaging this beautiful flowers! This is the text that I comment on every tulip photo. It seems obvious, but unfortunately people go very far to shoot the "perfect" picture and that is why sometimes there is a need to be trampled on. Be respectful to the flower bulb growers, as the tulips are their livelihood. And if you are taking pictures in a field, always walk carefully in the gullies between the tulips. That way everyone stays happy!
Tip 8: Social Media
You have taken beautiful tulip photos and would love to share them, always use a hashtag. This can greatly increase the visibility of your post. Consider the use of singular and plural and different with your hashtag, for example: #flowerfield and #flowerfields and #spring. The hashtag #hollandbovenamsterdam and #tulpenbovenamsterdam are also good tags!
Furthermore, it is tempting to share a lot of tulip photos on Instagram. Just don't do this, you are holding back some kind of "overkill". I use the "checkerboard model". This means that you alternate each tulip photo with a different kind of photo. This ensures "peace of mind" in your Instagram feed and it looks much nicer!
Tip 9: Point of view
Experiment with different points of view. Get down on your knees and try to level the top of the tulip field with the horizon or photograph the tulips from the bottom! You will see that you will get really cool photos that are a lot more interesting to look at since it was not shot from the "normal" field of view.
Tip 10: Take some time and enjoy!
Often you are so busy trying to shoot a perfect picture between the tulip fields that you sometimes forget to enjoy all that beauty! Try to take the time to take it all in and think about how unique the fields are. For example, some tulips also smell very good! On nice days you can even bring a beach chair and sit on the edge of a tulip field to fully enjoy what you hear, see and smell! Just give it a try!