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Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Where to Find and Photograph the Perfect Sunflower in the Capital Region

Photographer Shaoni Paul shares the secrets of Golden Acres Charolais Farm.

One of the greatest joys of summer is watching the sunflowers bloom. For the full effect, visit a sunflower field in early or mid-August, like I did last year. I was thrilled when I discovered the perfect local farm for the task, the Golden Acres Charolais Farm that’s owned by the Boone Family in Westerlo, which is just 30 minutes from Albany. They are one of the sweetest families, sharing the beauty of their farm with people like us at no cost. 

Flowers have always had a special place in my heart when it comes to photography. The texture, beauty, variety and vibrancy of the petals make it very hard to not click, regardless of whether you’re taking an up-close look at one individually or are in a field covered like a blanket. For this sunflower, I used my Sony Alpha 7 Mark 2 with Sony FE 24–105 mm F4 G OSS Lens. Although flower photography is fun, a bright sunny day can make it tricky to photograph these beauties. I used a low ISO, with a higher shutter speed around 1/200-1/500sec and a varied length of aperture from f/5-f12 to manage a close-up shot with a blur background or a landscape view.  

So, if you love flowers, farmhouses and country roads, this beautiful farm is a must-visit this summer. Enjoy the view—and be sure to bring home some fresh sunflowers and gorgeous photos of your own.                  

Find more of Paul’s work on Instagram at @paul.shaoni.

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