Reference Photos for Artists: Flowers

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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Bee 1

Reference Photographs for Artists : Bee on Flower
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.

A collection of flower photos for artists to use as reference in paintings.

We can't all have gardens such as Claude Monet's at Giverny, so here's a collection of flower reference photos that brings the flowers to you. Don't feel guilty about using photos for inspiration. Monet himself said: "Whether my cathedral views, my views of London and other canvases are painted from life or not is nobody's business and of no importance whatsoever." And if you get hayfever, photos have the advantage of not making you sneeze!

See also: Terms of Use of these Artist's Reference Photos.

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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Bee 2

Reference Photographs for Artists : Bee on Flower
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Sunflower

Artist's Flower Reference Photos: Sunflowers
© Susan Tschantz

• This photo is the subject for the Painting Photos Challenge #11.

Things to consider when painting this photo:
Will you stick to the format of the photo or use a squarer canvas?
Will you contain the flower within the edges or let it go off?
Will you include the leaves in the background or just use a color in the background?

• Three Watercolor Paintings of this Sunflower

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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Sunflower 2

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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Yellow Lily

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers
Image: © Karen Vath
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Red Hibiscus 1

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers Red Hibiscus
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Arum Lily

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.

• This photo is the subject for the Painting Photos Challenge #16.

Pay particular attention to the direction of light. The sun is not hitting the flower from the front or side, but from behind. Look where the shadows and darker tones are, how sun back-lights some of the the white in the flower. Look closely where the highlights (lightest tones) are; they may not be where you expect them.

Decide on a format: is it going to be vertical, horizontal, or square? Will you include a background? If so, will this simply be a color or will it have foliage? Don't neglect to look at the large version of the photo (click on it) to observe the texture in the flower, the distinctive lines in the white.

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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 1

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Daisies
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 2

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Daisies
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 3

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers, Roses, and Daisies
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 4

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Daisies
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: White Daisy with Bug

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Daisies
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.

• This photo is the subject for the Painting Photos Challenge #19.

The first decision to make if painting this photo would be whether to include the bug or not. It adds another point of interest to the subject, but also has a bit of a yuck-factor.

In terms of composition, there are quite a few options. You could keep things as they are in the photo, you could opt for a square format with the flower centrally placed. You might crop into the daisy so the petals go off the four edges of your composition, or perhaps on only one or two sides.

Maybe you'll add a stem to the flower so it's not floating against the background. Perhaps you'll reduce the background even further, to a single color with tonal variations?

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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: White Daisy 2

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Daisies
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: White Daisy 3

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Daisies
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: White Daisy 4

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Daisies
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 5

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Roses
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 6

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Daisies
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 7

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Daisies
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Rose

Artist's reference photos
A collection of photos of flowers for artists to use as reference in paintings. © LeeAnn Beer 2007
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Greyscale Rose

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Roses
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.

This photo has been turned into a black-and-white one so it's easier to identify the tones in the rose, which in turn makes it easier to paint any color you like.

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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pink Rose

Reference Photographs for Artists : Roses
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Red Rose

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Roses
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Yellow Rose

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Roses
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Orange Rose

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Roses
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Blue Rose

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Roses
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.

This photo has been digitally manipulated to create a blue rose ... but then why shouldn't roses be blue?

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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Green Rose

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Roses
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.

This photo has been digitally manipulated to create a green rose, but then why shouldn't roses be green too?

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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Foxglove 1

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Foxgloves
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Foxglove 2

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers : Foxglove
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Blue Agapanthus 1

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers Agapanthus
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Blue Agapanthus 2

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers Agapanthus
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Stretlizia or Bird of Paradise Flower

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers Strelitzia or Bird of Paradise
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Queen Ann Lace Flower

Reference Photographs for Artists : Queen Ann Lace Flower
Image: © Karen Vath
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: British Wildflowers 1

Reference Photographs for Artists : British Wildflowers
Image: © Sir Mac
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: British Wildflowers 2

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Roses
Image: © 2006 Sir Mac
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: British Wildflowers 3

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Roses
Image: © Sir Mac

• See a painting inspired by this reference photo: Emotional Outburst

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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Red 1

Flower Reference Photos for Artists
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Red 2

Flower Reference Photos for Artists
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Red 3

Flower Reference Photos for Artists
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pink 1

Flower Reference Photos for Artists
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pink 2

Flower Reference Photos for Artists
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Yellow 1

Flower Reference Photos for Artists
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy 1

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy 2

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy 3

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy 4

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy 5

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy 6

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy 7

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy 8

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy 9

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy 10

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pansy
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Orchid 1

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pink Orchid
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Orchid 2

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Orchid
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Orchid 3

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Orchid
Photo: © 2006 Clark Botha
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Flowering Gum Tree 1

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowering Gum Tree
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Flowering Gum Tree 2

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Mums or Chrysanthemums

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Chrysanthemums
© 2006 Karen Day-Vath
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Begonia

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Begonia
© 2006 Karen Day-Vath
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Bee Balm (Monarda didyma)

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Bee Balm (Monarda didyma)
© 2006 Karen Day-Vath
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pink Cone Flowers

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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Prickly Pear Cactus

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Prickly pear cactus
Prickly pear cactus, from Las Cruces, New Mexico. © 2006 Laurel Weathersbee
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Cactus Flowers

Flower Reference Photos for Artists
A collection of photos of flowers for artists to use as reference in paintings. Yellow, Prickly Pear Cactus Flowers. © Renee Casey 2007
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Apple Blossom

Artist's reference photos
A collection of photos of flowers for artists to use as reference in paintings. © LeeAnn Beer 2007
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pink Blosssom on a Nectarine Tree

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pink Blossom on a Nectarine Tree
Pink Blossom on a Nectarine Tree. Image: ©2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pink Blosssom on a Nectarine Tree 2

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Pink Blossom on a Nectarine Tree
Pink Blossom on a Nectarine Tree. Image: ©2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 8

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Daisies
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 9

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy
Image: ©2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 10

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy
Image: ©2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 11

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy
Image: ©2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 12

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy
Image: ©2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 13

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy
Image: ©2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 14

Reference Photographs for Artists : Flowers and Daisies
Image: © 2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy 15

Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Daisy
Image: ©2006 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.

Daisies may seem an unlikely subject for inspiration for abstracts, but if you scrunch up your eyes so the individual flowers become areas or spots of color, a clump of daisies turns into a cluster of colors.

If you're taking reference photos, you can get a blurry effect by moving the camera slightly as you take the shot, by setting the camera on manual and deliberately taking an out of focus shot, or by selecting a low f-stop on camera (such as f2.8 or f4) and focusing on a flower in the foreground.

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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Carnation

Artist's reference photos
A collection of photos of flowers for artists to use as reference in paintings. © LeeAnn Beer 2007
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Flower Reference Photos for Artists: Carnations and Cockatiel

Artist's Reference Photos: Flowers
Image: ©2006 Dolores Delgado

This is Papi, my dear cockatiel, who couldn't resist the carnations!

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Reference Photo for Artists: Daffodils

Daffodils Reference Photo for Artists
A collection of photos for artists to use as reference in paintings. Photo © 2009 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.

Terms of Use of these Artist's Reference Photos

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Reference Photo for Artists: Yellow Irises

Reference photo for painting yellow irises
A collection of flower photos for artists to use as reference in paintings. Photo © 2009 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Reference Photo for Artists: Yellow Iris

Reference photo for painting yellow irises
A collection of flower photos for artists to use as reference in paintings. Photo © 2009 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Reference Photo for Artists: Purple Irises

Reference photo for painting black or purple irises
A collection of flower photos for artists to use as reference in paintings. Photo © 2009 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.

In some lights, these irises look almost black rather than deep purple.

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Reference Photo for Artists: Red Poppies

Reference photo for painting red poppies
A collection of flower photos for artists to use as reference in paintings. Photo © 2009 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
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Reference Photo for Artists: Walled Garden

Reference photo for painting walled flower garden at Dunvegan Castle
Photo © 2009 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.

Taken in the walled garden at Dunvegan Castle in Scotland.

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Reference Photo for Artists: Big Leaves

Reference photo for painting green leaves
Reference photo for painting