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Dried Flowers

Dry out flowers to shoot as still lifes.

03/05/2013 - 00:00

As we're mid way through Spring there will be plenty of floral blooms at the moment. Daffodils should just be on their way out, but here's a way to extend their photographic modelling career.

Rescue a few that are still quite healthy by cutting at the base of the stem or extract ones from your vase that are starting to look limp.

Place them in a dry vase (no water in the base) and make sure they are not touching at the tops.

Leave the arrangement in a warm dry room for a couple of weeks or so. The time taken will depend on the environment.

The daffodils will dry out and become brittle. Once in this state they will last for years, providing you handle with care. You can photograph them on rainy days or in winter when you'd rather be indoors than out.

If you prefer the trumpet part of the daffodil to be pointing upwards try hanging the fresh flowers upside down using string tied to the base of the stem. This works really well with rose buds.

When the flowers are dried out you can arrange them and photograph them in still live sets, or as individual stems.


  • Try different backgrounds contrasting colours or harmonising to give different mood.
  • Try photographing close ups of the head using a close up or macro lens.
  • Shoot with window light to one side for more creative lighting.
  • Use flash from behind to give a translucence to the crisp petals
  • Switch to black & white for a more artistic look

Here's one lit with a studio light and softbox against a brown harmonising wall panel:

dried daffodil

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