Clive Nichols

Flower and Plant Photography

  • Recommended


    Includes personal feedback and tuition. More

  • $99

    Learn in an online classroom with no more than 20 classmates. More

Course Description

This is an in-depth course on flower and plant photography, led by one of the world’s finest garden photographers, Clive Nichols. Over four weekly lessons, Clive gives invaluable advice on both the practical and artistic aspects of flower and plant photography, drawn from his 25 years’ experience. He also sets assignments based on subjects discussed in the lessons and gives personalised feedback on your work.

In the course, Clive uses over 150 beautiful and striking examples of his flower and plant photographs to illustrate approaches and techniques you can use in your own work. This journey begins with considering the ways in which different types of light can be used to transform your images.

Clive moves on to discuss ways of composing images using the wonderfully diverse range of shapes and colours found in plants and flowers. He then looks at techniques for creating images in both indoor and outdoor environments. The course is completed with a discussion of more advanced creative techniques.

This Flower and Plant Photography Masterclass is filled with detailed advice on the many ways you can create striking images of flowers and plants, given by an acknowledged expert in his field.

Week 1: Lighting for Flower and Plant Photography 

Lighting is vitally important to all photography and in this lesson Clive explains how to use natural light to get the best out of your subjects. He starts by looking at the advantages of soft, diffused light, then moves on to bright sunlight, back lighting and side lighting. He also gives essential advice on controlling exposure for getting the best possible results in your work.

Week 2: Composition for Flower and Plant Photography

Flowers and plants offer a fascinating range of shapes and colours to photograph and in this lesson Clive talks about how to use them to make stunning images. He looks at single and repeated shapes, pattern and line, the use of positive and negative space and creating abstract images.

 Week 3: Working Indoors & Outdoors

In this lesson, Clive explores the pleasures of working indoors, including the use of different coloured backgrounds. He explains how to create simple but effective still life images and how props such as vases and bottles can be used to enhance them. He goes on to look at working outdoors and the advantages of shooting at different times of the day and in a range of weather conditions.

 Week 4: Developing Vision & Technique

Now that lighting, composition and different working conditions have been explored, Clive now examines different creative techniques to use in your flower and plant work. He discusses the importance of viewpoint, ways of using plant combinations and the striking effect of using complementary colours. He also looks at controlling depth of field, creatively using subject and camera movement and concludes with some useful post-processing techniques.



Camera which allows user to control shutter speed, aperture and ideally has an exposure compensation button

Macro and Zoom Lens

If you don't have a Macro lens then take a look at the following blogs for alternatives

Alternatives to the macro lens: Part 1

Alternatives to the macro lens: Part 2


Lens Hood for avoiding flare when shooting into the sun

A white and a gold reflector

Sheets of different coloured card

A piece of black velvet for backgrounds.

Course outline

  • Week 1: Lighting for Flower and Plant Photography.

  • Week 2: Composition for Flower and Plant Photography

  • Week 3: Working Indoors & Outdoors

  • Week 4: Developing Vision & Technique

Choose how you want to learn

  • The Expert option


    Develop your learning further with marked assignments and personal tuition from Clive Nichols

    • Start course whenever you like
    • 4 weeks tutor access for personalised assignment feedback & coaching
    • 4 assignments marked by Clive Nichols
    • Certificate of completion from Clive Nichols
    • Online classroom with up to 20 classmates
    • 4 lessons with expert videos & notes
    • Group chat & direct message with tutor & classmates
    • Lifetime access to videos, notes & classroom
    Learn more
  • The Peer option

    Discover the benefits of group learning in an online interactive classroom of no more than 20 people. Get the most from shared knowledge and community study

    • Start course whenever you like
    • Practise what you learn with your peers
    • Online classroom with up to 20 classmates
    • 4 lessons with expert videos & notes
    • 4 course assignments
    • Group chat & direct message classmates
    • Lifetime access to videos, notes & classroom
    Learn more

Learn better together

  • Online classroom

    Start anytime and join a class of no more than 20 students

    Start anytime and join a class of no more than 20 students
  • Test yourself

    Practice what you learn with assignments after each lesson

    Practice what you learn with assignments after each lesson
  • Personal tuition

    Exclusive assignment feedback from Expert Tutors

    Exclusive assignment feedback from Expert Tutors
  • Share

    Share ideas with classmates from around the world

    Share ideas with classmates from around the world

Meet Clive Nichols

Clive Nichols - Gardening

Britain’s best garden photographer

Photo Plus — The Canon Magazine
Clive Nichols has established a reputation as one of the world's finest flower and garden photographers. His passion for the subject comes across in every image that he makes. Clive has photographed many of the world's best gardens, including HRH The Prince of Wales's own private garden in Scotland, Lord Rothschild's private garden in Corfu and Lord Heseltine's private garden in Oxfordshire. In addition his work has appeared in hundreds of books as well as in countless magazines, calendars and brochures. Over the past 25 years he has amassed a stunning collection of over 60,000 images which are available for reproduction. Clive regularly gives master classes in flower and garden photography for The Royal Horticultural Society and for the past 5 years he has been one of the two main judges for the prestigious 'International Garden Photographer of the Year' awards.

Clive also photographs interiors, travel, architecture and lifestyle, undertaking many prestigious commissions including a calendar of the world's best modern buildings for a Russian Senator, a book about the finest Villa on Lake Como for Conde Nast and a new brochure on the historic BMA House in Tavistock Square, London, for the British Medical Association.

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