You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.


  • ePAPER

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and bonus content- exclusively for subscribers. Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks


Welcome to

This subscriber-only site gives you exclusive access to breaking news, in-depth coverage, exclusive interactives and bonus content.

You can read free articles of your choice a month that are only available on

8 tips for taking better bluebonnet pictures

It seems like a simple task to plop your kids, family or pets into a patch of bluebonnets and snap away. The first time I was asked to shoot photos of children in bluebonnets, that is exactly what I thought. What I didn’t expect was fire ants, other bugs and cranky kids.

So from a seasoned professional, below are some tips for great wildflower pictures:

  • Go early morning or late afternoon. Mid-day offers harsh light and too many shadows.
  • Dress for the occasion. That cute little sundress looks adorable on your daughter, but her legs will get itchy and be targets for bugs. I recommend long pants or tights and closed-toe shoes.
  • Think about getting faces closer in the frame. If you have your subject closer, you can use the flowers as a backdrop and surround the face of your loved one in beauty.
  • If you want to show off the vastness of the flowers, do not worry if your subject is looking at you. Let him look at the flowers, smell them and just be himself.
  • For little ones, bring a diversion. Bubbles, a ball, a favorite toy — anything to get their mind off the fact that you are asking them to sit in the middle of itchy flowers.
  • Bring help. I tried to photograph my son when he was 6 months old in the bluebonnets, all by myself. It was not working because my son was upset that he could not see my face behind the camera. A neighbor came by to help distract my son.
  • Stay away from shooting on the side of highways; it is dangerous. Look for other locations. Neighborhoods, parks, some churches have lovely fields, and of course, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. They have a special place for taking pictures.
  • Shoot more than one photo. Digital is cheap, so keep taking pictures until your subjects walk away and threaten to leave without you.

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Lifestyle

Don’t let your mind wander

Have you ever spent half an hour or more frantically looking for your keys? Is there a book that you know is on one of your book shelves, but for some reason you can’t find it? Do you often have to look for a few minutes before you find your parked car? These are fairly common problem, especially as you get older. You can’t just automatically...
From the horrors of slavery come clues about ancestors
From the horrors of slavery come clues about ancestors

If your African-American ancestors go back more than a few generations in Texas, some of them almost assuredly passed through New Orleans. “New Orleans was the richest and busiest slave port in America,” says LaToya Devezin, community archivist at the Austin History Center and a native New Orleanian. “And it operated the biggest slave...
Baby boomers are getting divorced in record numbers

Apparently, baby boomers don’t believe in happily ever after — at least when it comes to marriage. Since 1990, the divorce rate has doubled for U.S. adults 50 years and older, according to government data. This comes at a time when splitting up has actually become less common for the younger crowd. Though younger couples divorce more, their...
Sentara’s Music and Medicine creates a healing duet for patients
Sentara’s Music and Medicine creates a healing duet for patients

NORFOLK, Va. — When the Johnny Cash melody frustrates James Rodriguez, he chuckles, shakes his head and says, “I don’t know.” Tracy Bowdish gently pushes him, taking his hand into hers as she leans closer and sings in bell-clear perfect pitch lyrics from “I Walk the Line.” The goal is to get Rodriguez to find the...
Take care of your savings by taking care of your brain
Take care of your savings by taking care of your brain

Grab a bowl of berries and walk up a steep hill. Now you’re ready to learn three other ways to save your retirement fund. Confused? The advice is simplistic and ignores the devastating financial toll dementia-related expenses often add to a person’s struggle with the disease, but if there are some low-cost and relatively easy ways to delay...
More Stories