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4929.jpg© Chuck Place

Spring wildflowers are a welcome sight in Southern California. Not only are they beautiful, but it means we have received enough rain during the past winter so that drought is not an issue. The mountains behind Santa Barbara often develop great carpets of purple lupine in late March after a wet winter.

I like to use a compositional technique called forced perspective to create an exaggerated feeling of depth in an image and to accentuate the foreground subject. In this case, I placed my camera close to the lupine and just above the height of the blooms. Quarter backlighting gave me saturated colors and dramatic shadows from the oak trees on the hillside. Spring wildflowers are one of my favorite subjects and I often find myself shooting from the more interesting perspective of ground level


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