by Deborah Clark,
Ask any artist: the search for inspiration is constant. For photographers, a new breed of inspirational beauty comes with every season. We love the clean crisp winters and warm colors of fall, but nothing sparks a creative eye like the vibrant allure of springtime. While the entire world comes alive, there are some places that truly embrace the spring season. Turn your camera’s lens to these locations to capture the magic.
Newark, New Jersey
Most people think of Washington, D.C., when they imagine the famous fragrant cherry blossoms. In a recent segment on NPR, Branch Brook Park in Newark, N.J., was featured for its jaw-dropping inventory of the tiny white and pink spring flowers. Not only does Newark hold more of the trees than Washington, D.C., they are No. 1 in the world for cherry blossom tree varieties. Once a grim depleted place, Branch Brook Park now receives thousands of tourists each spring viewing and taking photos of the beautiful flowering fields.
Visiting Tuscany is like stepping back in time. The birthplace of the Italian Renaissance, Tuscany exudes old-world culture and beauty. This time of year, the tourism crowds haven’t quite taken over and the farmlands are full of life. Italian towns hold plenty of spring festivals that celebrate age-old traditions and medieval novelty, such as the Festa del Grillo and Scoppio del Carro in Florence.
The weather in the spring is still cool and the smell of blooming gardens fill the air. While Amsterdam is arguably a perfect landscape year round, springtime is exceptional. May is full of festivals and special occasions, such as National Cycling Day and National Windmill Day. The multitude of tulips in every color imaginable are available in markets all over the city. If it’s still not quite enough for you, the Keukenhof Gardens showcase more than seven million daffodils, tulips and hyacinths across 32 acres of nothing but flowers. View the garden’s website for a list of spring flower shows through April and May.
The City of Lights is always a photographer’s dream, but when spring rolls around the city is almost surreal. Classic European architecture, street-side cafes, remarkable city monuments and romantic cliches around every corner— if that’s not enough to get your creative juices flowing, nothing will. Many famous gardens surrounding the city abound with seasonal blooms, such as the 60-acre 15th-century Jardin du Luxembourg. The near-perfect weather brings out tourists and locals alike to pepper the streets of Paris with springtime cheerfulness.
Victoria Falls, Zambia/ Zimbabwe
Of course any photographer would leap at the chance to capture an image of one of the Seven Wonders of the World. This time of year, Victoria Falls is more wonderful and awe-inspiring than usual. The rainy season ends in early April, according to Mother Nature Network, leaving the mile-wide waterfall with an earth-shaking rush of clear water. To get the best shots of Victoria Falls and the connecting Zambezi River, helicopter tours can be booked for stunning aerial views.