Trillium nivale Riddell (snow trillium)

Trillium nivale Riddell (snow trillium)

Snow trillium is the earliest and smallest of the genus in North America. It can be found in mid-March but is more likely early April. Plants are seldom taller than 9cm.

The species is Endangered in several eastern states and rare in others.

Technical Details

Composite: No
The photo was taken in situ.

To avoid damage to the wildflowers’ immediate area, I always select small subjects, such as this, next to well-worn trails or areas naturally devoid of vegetation. That way, I can lie prone to compose and focus.

The background is a small lightbox housing a Nikon Speedlight. Two small speedlights provide frontal light. All speedlights are in manual mode, with their output adjusted by a wireless controller on the camera hot shoe.

1 Like

Another beauty. Quite an effective process to capture these wildflowers. Unfortunately I wouldn’t be able to get back up off the ground!

Patricia, I know the feeling. The other thing that often happens is concern from other people if they come across me along the trail.

I photograph along a popular western PA bike trail in one of the PA State Parks. I try to lay on the edge of the path to avoid bicycle traffic. Numerous bikers and walkers will stop and ask if I’m OK.
I thank them for their thoughtfulness and concern and assure them I will be capable of getting back up sooner or later.

When there is a subject that isn’t along a trail, I use the same lightbox and flash units. However, I put the camera on a bean bag. I can link to the camera with my phone and be able to see a live image. That allows for focus and composition while still standing.

The bending is complex, but once the camera is positioned, I can trigger it from the phone. An iPad is even better. The live view is more prominent, and I can focus more accurately.

When off-trail, I follow a three-point rule.

Only three body parts can touch the ground. Usually, it’s two feet, but sometimes an elbow gets added. No sitting!

I managed natural areas at one time and saw the horrible damage photographers can do by lying on the ground photographing flowers.

Maybe there should be a topic in the Discussions that enunciates a set of standards for sustainably photographing wildflowers.

Enjoying your style in this series Paul - really makes the subject the focal point and enhances the beauty found there!

Thank you, Dan. I appreciate the compliment.