How Do You Photograph Potted Plants? – The Ultimate Guide!

This article may contain affiliate links that can result in commissions for purchases, full details in our privacy policy.

Although keeping potted plants has been popular for hundreds of years, it is nice to see a surge in people who have taken to collecting a few potted plants in recent years. Although many people like to add a few potted plants to their gardens and outdoor areas, there has been exponential growth amongst people who keep “urban jungles” in their homes with large amounts of potted plants.

The whole urban jungle community is so popular that people are actually managing to earn their living from it by sharing their tips, tricks, and styles of how they keep their urban jungles on their blogs, YouTube channels, and Instagram accounts. Due to this and the general popularity of keeping potted plants steadily increasing, we have seen a large number of people asking questions like “how do you photograph potted plants?” over the last few months.

With the urban jungle scene only getting more and more popular, we expect that more and more people will end up taking it up and want to take the best photograph possible of their potted plants to share their hobby with the world on social media. Due to this, we have decided to publish this article where we will be going over our various tips and tricks on what you are able to do to ensure you are able to capture the best photographs possible of your potted plant collection.

Start With The Best Equipment Possible

We have lost count of the number of people who think that using a smartphone camera automatically means that they will get low-quality photographs of their plants. This is far from true and modern smartphones have cameras that rival, if not beat many of the point and shoot cameras on the market right now. You can take this a step further by picking up a detachable smartphone lens too allowing you to capture breathtaking photographs of your potted plants too.

Although we are aware the majority of our readers who are interested in capturing photographs of their potted plants will be using their smartphone, there will be a small number who have a mirrorless or DSLR camera. The possibilities really are endless with either of these options due to their interchangeable lenses allowing you to capture totally different styles of photograph with your camera.

We would guess that the majority of our readers who do own a mirrorless or DSLR camera and are looking to spend a large amount of time capturing photographs of plants would do well to make sure they have a decent wide angle lens as well as a decent macro lens. This allows you to capture your wider photographs of your plants while the macro lens offers the best close ups possible.

That said though, don’t be disheartened if you are going to be using your smartphone. Many of the content creators who run the popular blogs, YouTube channels and Instagram accounts based around urban jungles started with many still using a smartphone. As we mentioned, a modern smartphone is easy enough to get started and can offer excellent image quality, even if you don’t choose to pick up a decent detachable smartphone lens.

Improve The Lighting Situation

Although this may sound like a very basic tip to some of our readers, it is without a doubt one of, if not the most common mistake that we see in all photography niches, not just when photographing your potted plants. Depending on where your potted plants are, you can often improve the lighting situation for your photography session within minutes and the improvement to your image quality is often vast.

Of of the main benefits of photographing potted plants is that by the nature of them being potted, it is usually very easy to move them without risking any root damage. This means that if they usually sit in an area with poor lighting, you can easily move them to a better location with ease too.

Simply moving the plant to a better lit location of your home will probably be the best option for the vast majority of our readers. That said though, if you are building a business around a blog, YouTube channel, or Instagram account based on your potted plants, you can get really creative with a decent lightwand too.

One thing that we would point out when it comes to the lighting for your potted plants is that direct sunlight as well as a camera flash can not only cause exposure issues but depending on the plant pot, cause a reflection and spoil the photograph. Always play around with a few test photographs to see what you are able to get to test for problems like this.

Consider Positioning

This one is going to depend on the situation and the the type of photograph that you want of your plants. Many people usually have their potted plants in good locations that work well for photography anyway so there is no need to move them provided the lighting is ideal. That said though, you can sometimes get creative and move our plants around your home to come up with new content ideas if you are producing online content based around your potted plants.

You can also collect your potted plants from all around your home and make a kind of group photograph like the one below too. Again, this gives you additional content that you are able to share with your audience to ensure that you are never short on content ideas. Additionally, using this group photograph strategy allows you to mix colors, textures, shapes, and sizes all in the same photograph too.

Pose Your Plants

Although posing your potted plants for the photograph can take a little practise, it is well worth developing if you are planning on capturing photographs of them on a regular basis. There are a ton of different ways that you are able to pose your plants and if you think outside of the box you can really get creative and come up with some excellent ideas.

You can skim your favourite urban jungle Instagram page for ideas on how other people are posing their plants and although it usually looks difficult at first, it tends to be surprisingly easy once you have a little practice under your belt. Always keep your plants in mind when posing them for your photograph though, there are a large number of techniques out there that let you position them optimally without putting them at risk of damage that you are able to use to your advantage.

Prune Your Plants

Although we would imagine that the vast majority of our readers will be pruning their potted plants anyway, we just want to remind you that removing any dead leaves, petals, buds or flowers from your plants prior to capturing their photograph can work wonders. It is a quick, easy, and free tip that you are able to use to your advantage but it really can work wonders.

Just on a quick side note, there are some people who prefer not to prune their plants and share their photographs on sites like Instagram to show them in their natural state. This is also fine too and there are a few very popular accounts who use this same strategy so pruning does come down to your preference and if you choose not to prune your plants, it does not mean that your social accounts can’t become successful.

Check Your Focus

It doesnt matter if you are taking your photographs with a smartphone, a mirrorless camera, or a DSLR camera, be sure to check your focus prior to capturing your photographs. Although most people will probably be using an auto focus system, it can take a few seconds to adjust for optimal image quality. If you are using manual focus then you are able to really perfect the focus of the frame to ensure that you are getting the best photograph possible.

Tweak Your Camera Settings

For the majority of people reading this, there may be no need to make any tweaks to your camera settings, especially if you are capturing your photographs of your plants with your smartphone. That said though, if you want the best photographs possible then it can be worth taking the time to play around with your camera settings and make a few tweaks, especially if you are using a mirrorless or DSLR camera.

Even the colour replication between Canon, Nikon, and Sony can vairy a fair bit due to the technology that each brand actually use in their cameras. On top of this, there are a bunch of camera settings that can add subtle differences to your photograph that can really make your potted plants pop and stand out.

Follow The Rule Of Thirds

There are a whole bunch of excellent tutorials out there going over how you are able to best incorporate the rule of thirds into your photography sessions so we wont be going over it in detail in this article as it will double its length. We would recommend that you have a quick Google search for tutorials on the rule of thirds though as integrating it into your potted plant photography can really help to get you better photographs.