5. Plants, Curiosities & The Natural World with Designer/Photographer Ines Stuart-Davidson

Ines Stuart-Davidson

Graphic Designer & Photographer

22 September 2020

Plants, Curiosities & The Natural World

Ever heard of terpenes or a Desert Rose Selenite? Well, you’re in for a treat!

Ines Stuart-Davidson has a love of curiosities and the wonders of the natural world. In this episode you’ll hear her get down and dirty with plants as she talks about photography techniques. And you may even add some new lingo to your vocabulary. Plants play an important role in her work life too. Ines designs a broad range of creative work for Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew – otherwise known as the ever-amazing Kew Gardens.

Ines’s Instagram: @idlondon


  • Andy GoldsworthyΒ British artist, sculptor, photographer and environmentalist whose collaborations with nature are truly awe-inspiring.
  • Surreal Succulents Based in Cornwall. Wonderful place to get inspiration & bring more succulents into your life!
  • Crystal Singing Bowls or KonMari Tuning Fork To add a soothing resonance to your life. Subtle healing powers to help you reset and get balanced.

Plant Photography Tips

  • Make sure the light is just right. On a bright day β€œeverything just glows” and you can’t capture the actual colours of a plant. Best times for nature photography are early in the morning, when it’s overcast, during golden hour or even later on in the evening.
  • Get down and dirty. Try shooting on the same level as the plants. Or focus on a different vantage point and capture the surrounding architecture. Try something new! See if you can develop your own style of plant photography.
  • Mirror Lab is an Android app to help you creatively enhance your images.

The Benefits of Creative Limitations

  • Sometimes it helps to have a brief. Next time you go out for some nature photography, try shooting with a theme. How about focusing on fungi or honing in on those detailed macro shots? By creatively limiting yourself, you can test your skills and come up with innovative, often unexpected results.
  • Give group photography a try. Whether you all go out and shoot with the same theme or explore your own ideas, you’re bound to come away inspired.
  • Push yourself and expand your creative horizons.

I think sometimes when I go to Kew on my own terms, I just tend to photograph everything. Whereas when you set yourself a theme for that one day and say, β€œOh, I’m only going to do texture today”, you get some amazing results that you probably would have missed normally. So I think it’s actually good sometimes to set yourself a goal for that day.

Ines Stuart-Davidson

Take Time for Yourself

Whether, like Ines, you take time to discover your “reason for being” through the Japanese practice of Ikigai or delve deeper into the philosophy of Stoicism, remember to take time for yourself today… and every day.

Self-care is not selfish.

Limit your time on your phone and go outside and get in touch with nature in a more meaningful way. It’s really the most important thing I think. With all this negative news about loss of biodiversity, we really need to connect on a different level. And even if you don’t think you’re creative, you definitely are creative – maybe you just haven’t found the right thing for you yet.

Ines Stuart-Davidson