Each year, residents and visitors across the Lone Star State are lucky enough to find sightings of up to thirty wildflowers along various highways and open fields. Of all these delicate blooming plants, Texas Bluebonnets (Lupinus Texensis) are the most common to find. As their name suggests, Texas Bluebonnets are endemic to the state of Texas, and throughout the years, it has become a part of local tradition to take outdoor family portraits by them. Visiting the DFW Metroplex this season? Here are a few useful tips to help you capture the memories of your trip by the official Texas state flowers.
Research the Location Online
To make your trip as efficient and effective as possible, I highly recommend researching the location beforehand when you’re planning to take photos by the bluebonnets — especially when you’re visiting from out of state. Try browsing for bluebonnet sightings on social media, as most people who take photos by them would usually post about them on their personal pages. Use hashtags like #TexasBluebonnets to search for posts, and then read the captions or comments to find the exact locations. Although they do not post exclusively about bluebonnets sightings in DFW, the Texas Bluebonnet Sightings Facebook page can be a useful reference to turn to—as well as the Ennis Bluebonnet Trail website and app, where you can find the current bluebonnet status around the official city of Texas bluebonnets.
Hit The Highways
Here in DFW, it is not uncommon to pull up on the highways and take a quick photo of the bluebonnets. In fact, you will occasionally see families capturing photos by the bluebonnets, both with their camera phones and with professional DSLRs in Arlington near Six Flags (at Interstate 30 at State Highway 360) or near DFW Airport in Irving (at Highway 114).
If you want to join in all the fun, be sure to pull up your vehicle where it won’t disturb the flow of traffic and remember to keep track of the duration of your “visit.”
Wait for The Golden Hour
This might seem like a more technical photography tip, but if you want to get that warm and soft lighting in your bluebonnet photographs, wait for the 30-minute window before sunset to take them. Why? Because taking photos in midday might result in portraits with over exposure (too bright, too white). Although the ‘golden hour’ also occurs early in the morning after sunrise, the morning traffic might be a little too much for you to conquer especially if you are bringing your family with you. So we’d recommend you to go for the one before sunset —which at this time of the year, occurs around 7:15–7:45 p.m.
Have fun with it and share your photos using the hashtags #DFWHappenings or #DFWWeekend!
Photos Courtesy: Debora Manusama