Of the almost 2,000 photos submitted to our online galleries at www.heraldnet.com/yourphotos, more than 86 were what we call "flower mugshots."
We selected thirteen to inspire not only the gardener in you, but your inner photographer as well.
Some were taken with professional-style cameras and others with just a phone, but the subject, the lighting and the photographer all met in that magic moment to make stunning photos. See the gallery of our selections here.
Herald photo director Justin Best offers these tips for successful garden close-ups:
By default, most cameras expect the subject to be at least six feet away, but get closer, and turn on the macro feature of your camera to fill the whole frame. On most point-and-shoot cameras the macro mode is designated by a flower icon.
Shoot a lot
Film and processing used to be quite expensive, but digital media memory can now be cheaper than a movie ticket. Shoot multiple pictures, then select the best image to share.
Remember the light
Pay attention to the light at various times of the day. Does your back yard get a nice sliver of light late in the day? The golden light of early morning and late afternoon is soft and flattering to the subject.
Fill with flash
If the sun is too high or in the wrong position, your subject will often be in an unflattering shadow with harsh contrast. Turn on the manual flash to fill in the shadows without making the background too white or washed out. The on-camera flash can be tricky, so experiment.
The focus of your photo should be your subject, not a dead twig or spent flower head nearby. Most point-and-shoot cameras allow you to focus on the subject by partially pressing down the shutter button. You can then compose your photo with the proper focus.
Keep it steady
Blurry photos are often the result of camera shake when you are shooting a longer exposure without a tripod. Try not to go slower than 1/60 of a second without steadying your camera on a tripod or another stable object, such as a table.
Now, share the results
To submit photos of your own -- flowers, family or anything else -- go to www.heraldnet.com/yourphotos.
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