The Biggest Light Bulb in our sky is lighting up Spring. Walk, with the Sun behind you, along a Hedgerow, into a Wood, along a tree-lined street. Then turn around and re-trace your steps, walking directly towards the Sun. The difference can be astonishing. The landscape literally lights up. Leaves, blossom, grass, even common weeds, glow translucently. Everything becomes an object of exquisite beauty.


It’s a scene that never ceases to amaze. Sadly that broad palette of greens that we see in Spring will fade all too quickly to a more homogenous green and that vivid luminance is lost. Capture it while you can.


Here in the UK we have had several days of good weather and Spring has exploded around us and I have been busy with my camera. Get in close, capture Spring leaf by leaf. I have a name for these close-in shots: ‘MicroScapes’, putting the ‘Scape under the Microscope.


Here is a selection of images that I have found this year – some directly overhead, some at ground level, but all to my eye, inspiring. Click any image in the gallery below and use the arrows to navigate through the images.


About LensScaper

Hi - I'm a UK-based photographer who started out 45+ years ago as a lover of landscapes, inspired by my love of outdoor pursuits: skiing, walking and climbing. Now retired, I seldom leave home without a camera and I find images in unexpected places and from different genres. I work on the premise that Photography is Art and that creativity is dependent on the cultivation of 'A Seeing Eye'. I'm not averse to manipulating images to produce derivatives that may sometimes be far removed from the original.
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32 Responses to Luminance

  1. oneowner says:

    It’s amazing what back lighting can do for a subject. These are excellent examples and, yes, very inspiring.

    • LensScaper says:

      Thanks Ken – you are absolutely right and Spring is the best season of the year for Back Lighting, it’s a shame it’s over so quickly.

  2. Len Saltiel says:

    I agree with both you and Ken about back lighting Andy. Spring is so wonderful for great new color and you are right that we should capture it quickly. Nice images.

  3. jimdenham107 says:

    Really good post Andy! We’re still lagging behind on things blooming, but it’s about to explode! Will have to try doing exactly what you did and see the difference!

  4. seekraz says:

    It’s a beautiful time, Andy…well captured….

  5. Very nice, Andy, and great advice, not just for photographers. I think everyone should try to experience spring as you describe.

    • LensScaper says:

      Thanks Mark. The contrast between facing the sun and walking away from it can be huge – without sun, Spring loses so much of its beauty

  6. phillip says:

    Beautiful images Andy. I’m glad to that the sun is shinning somewhere, because we haven’t seen it very much around here. 🙂 I agree, and love to shoot leaves and flowers have back lighting.

    • LensScaper says:

      Thanks Phillip. Sorry to hear you are still struggling with the weather – we have had a superb few days of warm temps and blue skies. The countryside has just exploded into life.

  7. Wonderful spring light and colours in this series, Andy.

  8. I see that we are responding to the same set of conditions – your images are beautiful and perfectly express luminance.

    • LensScaper says:

      Thank you so much for your comment. I just love the wonderful translucency of young spring foliage. It’s the best tonic after a tough long winter.

  9. says:

    Great suggestions although I think most photographers are light sensitive already. Genuine photographs ! Beautiful!

  10. says:

    PS: LOVE your header!

  11. I love the new growth in the spring. The leaves have a wonderful translucency that they lose as they mature. It seems that suddenly my little world of the porch is wrapped in blankets of new leaves! Spring always makes me happy. You’ve captured the essence of it here.

  12. ehpem says:

    I too have been trying to photograph this seasonal luminance, though not with this much success.

    • LensScaper says:

      The dew on your grass was a great example of luminance. The secret is to walk directly into the Sun and be prepared to get down onto the ground. Even the weeds we hate at any other time of the year will light up.

  13. joserasan66 says:

    Mmmmmm Una Buena Serie De Fotografías, Son Muy Bellas…. Ha Sido Un Placer Encontrar Tu Blog, Un Saludo.

  14. Love this series, great use of light!

  15. Inspired and pretty says:

    Beautiful photos of these new leaves. The light illuminating them is superb !

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