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Creative Garden Photography

Making Great Photos of Flowers, Gardens, Landscapes, and the Beautiful World Around Us

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Gardens are everywhere, all around us. In this long-awaited guide to garden and flower photography, noted photographer and author Harold Davis tackles the subject of garden photography with an expansive brush. In this book, you’ll find techniques ranging from photographing vast formal gardens to photographing flowers for transparency on a...
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  • Print and eBook Bundle: $59.99
  • Print Book: $50
  • eBook: $39.99



Harold Davis


360 pages




Soft Cover - with flaps





  • Whats Not to Like about Gardens?
  • Understanding Gardens
  • Andr Le Ntre and the French Garden
  • Garden Style
  • The Backyard as Garden
  • The Garden as Status
  • The Importance of Garden Design
  • Of Light and the Garden
  • Intensity of Light
  • Diffusion
  • Light Direction
  • Checklist: Finding the Right Position
  • Understanding Reflectivity
  • Color and White Balance
  • Exposure and Light
  • Key Takeaways about Exposure
  • Special Times for Lighting
  • Using a Tripod
  • Creative Options with Tripods
  • Anatomy of a Tripod
  • Tripod Legs
  • Tripod Heads
  • Using the Tripod in the Garden
  • Focus and Depth of Field
  • Being in Focus
  • Soft Focus
  • Camera Position
  • Tilt-Shift Lenses
  • Focal Length
  • Types of Lenses
  • Focal Length and Depth of Focus
  • Manual and Autofocus
  • Depth of Field
  • Aperture and Depth of Field
  • Infinity and Hyperfocal Distance
  • The Garden in Black & White
  • Converting to Black & White
  • Extending Dynamic Range
  • Multi-RAW Processing
  • High-Dynamic Range (HDR)
  • Automated HDR
  • Hand-HDR
  • Impressionistic Photography
  • In-Camera Motion
  • Subject Motion
  • Out of Focus
  • Creative Exposures
  • In-Camera Multiple Exposures
  • Gardens of the Mind
  • The Art of Transparency
  • How Light Box Photography Works
  • What Kind of Light Box Works Best?
  • Arranging Flowers on a Light Box
  • Light Box Photography
  • Post-Production of High-Key HDR Images
  • Inversions in Post-Production
  • Understanding LAB Color
  • Inverting a White Background to Black
  • Brightening Images after Inversion
  • Photography on Black
  • The Flower as Diva
  • Low-Key Photography in the Field and Studio
  • Low-Key HDR Post-Production
  • Macro Photography
  • Macro Photography Gear
  • Macro Lenses
  • Extension Tubes and Bellows
  • Close-Up Filters
  • Focusing Rails
  • Specialty Gear
  • Extreme-Macro Lenses
  • Macro Photography in the Garden
  • Focus Stacking
  • Focus Stacking in Photoshop
  • Photographing Water Drops
  • Approaching Water Drop Photography
  • Reflections and Refractions
  • Spider Web Studio
  • Photographing Little Critters
  • Getting Close
  • Stopping Motion
  • Focusing and Critters
  • Auxiliary Lighting
  • Modifying Light
  • Macro Lighting Tools
  • Where to Go for More Info
  • Sensor Size Matters
  • About EXIF Data
  • Focal Length
  • Cameras and Lenses
  • List of Figures
  • Locations of Gardens PhotographedBotanical Glossary
  • Photographic Glossary
  • Index

19 reviews for Creative Garden Photography

  1. (verified owner)

    I have followed Harold Davis since 2015 and have a number of his books and watch his educational videos on YouTube every chance I get. This is yet another excellent book from Harold; I suggest anyone looking to get better at garden photography purchase a copy!

  2. (verified owner)

    This is an excellent books on garden photography. It is more on photography technique than photoshop skills. All technique has been well explained. Another good book from Harold Davis. Highly recommend!! Excellent choice for garden photography!

  3. I have read and much enjoyed Harold Davis’ other books on photography, so I am excited about this one on garden photography – especially since we are in the middle of garden season. Also, with our current pandemic, visiting gardens is something we can safely do with our cameras.

    I love his section on black and white garden photography. I think many people don’t envision their flower photos in monochromatic format but he does a great job of telling us how to pick the right subjects and how to deal with the photos post-production.

    I have read other photography books on the flower and garden as subjects but have never seen a chapter like Davis includes on types of gardens, garden design, and gardens as status 🙂 He gives us specific tips using his own gardening techniques as demonstrations.

    The bulk of this book covers just about every topic and subtopic a photographer would ever need to photograph flowers and gardens: he talks about, for example, diffusion, exposure, how to choose a tripod and when to use one, how to achieve soft focus and sharp focus, using tilt-shift lenses, aperture, HDR, multiple exposures, and many, many more topics. This is a superb resource for a flower photographer or even someone who wants just to dabble in flower photography.

    The author gives us a chapter on impressionistic photography which I found especially interestIng. I had not thought about trying ICM — In-camera motion — in a garden setting, but now I will.

    He also discusses other creative exposure strategies such as multiple exposures and out of focus exposures. he tells us how to create an impressionistic multiple exposure photo which, in my experience, is a pretty unique idea. I am eager to try it and happy that we are in garden season right now 🙂

    Toward the end of this superb book Davis talks about indoor flower photography, which is great. Once garden season is over it is convenient to go to the grocery store and buy a few floral subjects.

    The author also gives us substantive sections on macro photography, focus stacking, and lighting. I can’t believe how comprehensive this book is!

    I looked again at the cover and was reminded that the title is “ creative garden photography“. The title reflects the true nature of this book. Davis discusses countless unusual methods of photographing gardens. One could never be disappointed looking through this book for ideas on what to try next :-). Me, I can’t wait to read it again.

  4. (verified owner)

    This is another very good book by Harold Davis. It is full of good information on photography techniques as well as interesting ideas on how to get creative in the garden. This book will appeal to photographers of all levels. Definitely an excellent choice for anyone interested in flower and garden photography.

  5. (verified owner)

    Harold Davis is the Master of what he does. This book is beautifully printed and organized After studying his 2012 book “Exploring Macro Worlds” I knew I just had to have this newest book. It does not disappoint. The book is full of great information, inspiration and lovely photos. Thank you Harold for another fantastic work of art.

  6. (verified owner)

    Another great book by Harold Davis. Lots of great examples of his flower photography . Covers in the garden, studio and lightbox techniques. The printing is also great. Covers a lot of material for sure. I know that this book will improve my garden and flower photography. That is what I expect from a photography book, help in enhancing my skills by learning from a true master of photography. Thanks Harold, and Phyllis his wife and Rocky Nook for this stellar book.

  7. (verified owner)

    Well worth the money. Lots of good ideas and information on how to make them happen. He is an expert and the book helps us to become one too.

  8. (verified owner)

    There are some gorgeous and very inspirational photos in this book. Harold has been to some exotic and beautiful gardens throughout the world and has included many well-done photos of these lovely places. He includes information on how to create the many setups so it’s an informative book but for me, it’s more inspirational and aspirational. I’m really enjoying this book.

  9. (verified owner)

    Harold Davis has seen a lot of beautiful gardens. This book allowed me to take a walk with Mr. Davis, metaphorically speaking. He explains what to look for when creating an image. The importance of thinking about what you are trying to show, what you are trying to say when creating an image. He talks about lighting, the importance of going to places in different kinds of weather and different times of the day and of the year. The chapter on taking black and white pictures of flowers was revealing. I’ve always thought that colors brings the beauty of a garden to life, but after reading what Mr. Davis has to say and looking at the photographs he has taken, I go to my local gardens and view the familiar with a different eye. This book talks about the hows extremely well – how to look for images, how to set up your equipment to take an image, how to set your exposure, how to process the images. He talks about artists that inspire him, about the techniques that he learned from the masters and how these same techniques can be used for photographing gardens, for photographing flowers. Flowers and gardens are colorful but now I look forward to taking images in black and white. Maybe even try some lightbox photography. So many great ideas to try . A book of exploration and inspiration.

  10. This is a fantastic book on ‘garden’ photography specifically because of the author’s (Harold Davis) definition of a ‘garden’. In Mr. Davis’ world almost anything can become a garden if you open your eyes and use your imagination. The book is beautifully produce both in content and imagery and the printing is superb. The majority of the book is how to visualize and take the image rather than how to use post-processing. I really got into the last chapter on ‘close-up’; his images were outstanding and something to strive for. Kudos Mr. Davis for a job well done.

  11. (verified owner)

    I was anxiously awaiting the arrival of this book WOW! I am not disappointed. The layout is fantastic. The pictures are beautiful, and the tutorials are thoughtful and easy to follow along. The tips for equipment to use is very helpful. I have other books by Harold Davis and I must say this is one of the very best. Shout out to RockyNook for always being a source of quality instructional and inspiring material

  12. (verified owner)

    Harold Davis’s creative gardens book is fantastic! There are so many beautiful images and great information about gardens and flowers. The book is both beautiful to look at and full of great tips for photographers who actually want to improve their skills and learn how to use a Lightbox for unique images. Harold is very generous in sharing his years of experience as a photographer. This is one of the best photography books I own.

  13. (verified owner)

    A wealth of knowledge and creativity! Harold Davis is one of my favorite photography educators, and this book is one of my favorite finds from Rocky Nook. Not only does he teach a creative approach, but he also delves into techniques both in-photo and post-processing that will enhance your photography in the garden and beyond.
    The book is absolutely gorgeous, and it’s clear that much care and thought went into it. I look forward to spending many happy hours improving and enhancing my skills.

  14. (verified owner)

    I am a keen gardener and love visiting gardens so this looked good. It turned our to be more than good 🙂 It covers a diverse range of ideas, both in camera and effects added in post-processing to give one ideas for trying. The various post processing techniques are not tied to one program which is helpful. I am in the process of trying some of these ideas and am sure they will help me in the creative processes of my own photography 🙂 🙂

    So I thoroughly recommend this beautiful book.

  15. (verified owner)

    Excellent book. Harold Davis is an accomplished teacher & his images are amazing. I have been shooting macro & flower images for a number of years, but I learned so much from this book. At first, I was only going to purchase the ebook and then decided to also get the book. I am so glad I decided to get the book also & I wish other ebooks offered a book as well. I have a number of “flower people” that will be receiving this book as a gift.

  16. (verified owner)

    Excellent and inspirational book (and very nice pictures) on garden photography. A bit of philosophy but lots of exciting techniques (that were unfamiliar at least to me) explained. I am happy with my purchase – and this time print book clearly wins competition against e-book!

  17. (verified owner)

    I have long been a fan of Harold Davis – both as an educator and a writer. He is a master of the creative and technical aspects of photography, and this combination of skills is reflected in his magnificent new book, Creative Garden Photography.

    The book is STUNNING. Harold and his wife Phyllis have done a superb job of laying out text. The double-column format and the numbered and bulleted lists make the text very readable and the techniques very usable. The photos are beautiful. As in his other books Harold provides technical capture data for each image – I frequently try to duplicate an image by replicating his capture data.

    The book is COMPREHENSIVE in detailing how to photograph many aspects of a garden – both from the large landscape/ garden view and also from the close-up view. An introductory section is both informative and inspirational. I was particularly fascinated by the discussion of garden styles and design. The main part of the book is divided into two sections: the garden at large and the garden up close.

    The book is EDUCATIONAL. Harold presents critical insights and detailed instructions for a variety of topics.

    In “Photographing the Garden at Large” Harold covers such topics as light, focus, and dynamic range. He also provides instruction on two types of garden photography: black/ white photography and creative photography. These sections in particular were very stimulating to me.

    In “Taking the Garden Close-Up and Inside” Harold probes techniques — such as creating inversions using the LAB setting in Photoshop, high-key and low-key flower photography, and focus-stacking. In a broader sense, he reviews his famous technique for creating high-key floral compositions and includes an expansive section on macro photography.

    The book is TECHNICAL. Not only do many techniques include camera settings and post-processing procedures. Also Harold discusses gear that facilitates garden photography. Some of the gear he covers is: tripods, types of light boxes, macro gear and lighting tools, and some explanation of camera and lenses in the Notes.

    Because the book has so many distinct sections, it invites the photographer to focus on areas that he/she finds most interesting or most challenging or just plain fun. A book to keep and to explore!

  18. (verified owner)

    It’s no secret that I read a lot of books in an attempt to enhance my skill as a photographer. Many of these have been written by Harold Davis, one of my favorite authors on things photographic. His latest volume, Creative Garden Photography, is one of his best, if not in fact the very best one he’s written.
    The book covers a wide range of subjects related to garden photography, including:
    • The types and sizes of gardens, many of which he’s visited and photographed worldwide.
    • The practice of photographing flowers in gardens using a variety of techniques to achieve stunning effects.
    • Studio photography of flowers, including lightbox photography.
    As he does in all his books, Davis shares his photographic and post-processing methods in enough detail that they can be replicated by the reader.
    This book is filled with photographs that are not only beautiful but also inspiring and educational. For each, he carefully details how and where the image was produced, both in the camera and the digital darkroom. But though the photographs provide valuable information for photographers, non-photographers will also find this beautiful and informative book worthy of a serious perusal.
    In crafting this book, Davis is generous, both in the volume of ideas he presents and in his spirit of sharing his knowledge. As a result, it is replete with techniques and inspiration that will stimulate my photography for a long time to come. I’ve already begun to implement some of his ideas, especially lightbox photography, and I have plans to do more.
    Even if flower photography is not your interest, this book contains many ideas that can be applied to other subject matter. For that reason, this book makes an important contribution to the photographic technical literature. I cannot recommend it highly enough.

  19. (verified owner)

    I found Harold Davis’ book very helpful in my photography, his creativity produces some amazing images. The processes are very well explained and easy to follow. The book and the inspiration has helped me through this Covid confinement.

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