Portrait with Flowers

Ilaria 🇮🇹

This photo session was inspired mainly by nature and femininity. The portrait with flowers became the perfect answer to the next lockdown, longing for nature and the upcoming winter. The idea of ​​photos also refers to the language of flowers, the symbolism of which has always fascinated me. Probably each of us knows that red roses mean love and white lilies signify purity. But in fact, each flower has a hidden message for us.

Language of Flowers

The symbolic meaning of flowers has been present in culture for centuries – adapted from classical mythology, religious symbolism and ancient tradition. However, it was Louise Cortambert (pseudonym Madame Charlotte de la Tour) that defined the cryptologic language of flowers by writing her dictionary Le langage des Fleurs (19th century). Her book conquered mainly France, England and the United States, as well as other European and South American countries.

The Victorian era (Great Britain, 19th century) was particularly fond of the secret language of flowers. At a time when direct expression of affection was unwelcome, floral arrangements became intercessors of hidden messages. The “talking bouquets” were called nosegays 1 or tussie-mussies. They were often part of clothing – they were kept close to the nose, used as a brooch, hair ornament, or tied around the waist. Interestingly, the idea of ​​wearing bouquets on clothes has a much less romantic origin. Flowers and herbs placed close to the nose was a way to deal with plagues and the unpleasant smell of dirty cities. Nowadays, tussie-mussie has survived as a popular wedding accessory.

Ilaria & Alstromeria

We chose flowers for the session together with Ilaria, guided by our intuition. All in very feminine tones of white and pink. I checked their meaning afterwards. It turned out that they perfectly match Ilaria’s personality and convey a very interesting message:

  • Alstroemeria – Sacrifice⁠⠀
  • Eustoma – Recognition⁠⠀
  • Gerbera – Joy⁠⠀
  • Gypsophila – Infinite love⁠⠀
  • Pink Carnation – I will never forget you⁠⠀

I decided to complete the portrait with flowers with pictures of frozen alstroemeria. The abstract, watercolour effect of the close-ups is the perfect addition to the entire gallery.

If you are curious about the meanings of other flowers, you can use this dictionary. I also invite you to contact me for flower photo sessions and to see the other portrait gallery.


1 The Middle English word “gay” meant ornament.