Garden Photography with Larry Lederman


Whether photographing your own garden or the sculpted acreage of the Rockefellers, following the light and finding infinite new angles to present the flora is time well spent. That is the clear takeaway from this week’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast with photographer Larry Lederman. However, we also discuss practical tips on bracketing, histograms, tripods, and zoom lenses for medium format cameras. It really is a nice chat with a photographer who has found pleasure in photographing not only his own garden, but some of the most immaculate gardens, both public and private, on the East Coast.

Lederman is the author of six books featuring his botanical and horticultural photography, including the upcoming Garden Portraits: Experiences of Natural Beauty, which will be published by The Monacelli Press on October 13, 2020 and is available for pre-order. He has photographed for the New York Botanical Garden and other famed gardens in the New York area and brings a perspective that, forgive me, sees the forest for the trees. He understands blending the universal with the personal and capturing his impression of the natural and designed beauty while also illustrating the unique essence that the gardener, landscape architect, or owner has created.

Largely self-taught as a photographer, Lederman discusses his transition from using Leica M system cameras to the Nikon D850 and the Pentax 645Z system. We also talk about his preference for zoom lenses, the relationship he feels between architecture and landscape photography, his technique when approaching a new space, and the need to return to a garden in all four seasons, often starting in winter, in order to fully understand and depict these spaces that are both natural and human-made. Join us for this informative chat and let us know in the Comments section the tricks and techniques you use to photograph the gardens in your life. Also join Larry Lederman as he leads a webinar for B&H on October 28, 2020.

Guest: Larry Lederman

Photograph © Larry Lederman

The Beckoning Path, Armonk, NY. Mirrored fall colors. © Larry Lederman
Hawks Nest, Chappaqua, NY. A hedge of forsythia that burst into brilliant yellow bloom in early spring. © Larry Lederman
Hawks Nest, Chappaqua, NY. Winter reveals the structure of the Rose Garden. © Larry Lederman
Hawks Nest, Chappaqua, NY. Fall leaves over the falling brook. © Larry Lederman
Glimcher Garden, Long Island, NY. This work by Zhang Huan playfully commands the landscape. © Larry Lederman
Innisfree, Millbrook, NY. Pond in a stand of conifers. © Larry Lederman
Japanese Garden at Kykuit, Pocantico Hills, NY. © Larry Lederman
Merrin Garden, Cortlandt Manor, NY. © Larry Lederman
Brubeck Garden, Wilton, CT. A Japanese-style gate sets the tone of the garden and its surrounding planting. © Larry Lederman
Cover art from “Garden Portraits: Experiences of Natural Beauty” by Larry Lederman, published by The Monacelli Press, 2020

Host: Allan Weitz
Senior Creative Producer: John Harris
Senior Producer: Jason Tables
Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves