How to Create Better Landscape Photography Photography Tutorial and Tips2019-11-12 | photography
It doesn’t matter if you’re a complete novice landscape photographer or an experienced photographer who has sold thousands of photos through stock agencies; there are still some fundamental rules of landscape photography that you should be using as a photographer.
Eventually, once you’ve honed your skills you can then learn how to break the rules to improve your own style. Take a look below for some quick and easy tips to instantly improve the quality of your landscape photography.
Map, Map, Map
Map out your locations before heading out on any landscape shoot and ensure that you have an up to date map with you. With the developments in technology this is now easier than ever. You can use your phone, whether it is android or IOS, to map your route beforehand. This allows you to work out the best spots for landscape shots, such as mountain peaks, lakes and scenic spots.
Use a Tripod
Use of tripod is essential for great landscape photography. I would also suggest using a shutter release cord to ensure your camera is as completely still as possible. You want your image to be really sharp, but even with your camera on a tripod, pushing the shutter button can cause a tiny vibration, enough to ruin your photo. Try a reliable sturdy tripod, which will provide stability and ensure a crystal clear shot.
Composition is at the Core.
Learning the rule of composition is essential, it’s the golden rule, so keep in mind the ‘rule of thirds’, lead lines, balance of the photo and focal points. This will greatly improve your landscape photography. Composition really is the key to any successful landscape shoots. If you’re unsure where to start you can begin by using the ‘rule of thirds’, an easy principle to start with, all you need to do is simply split your frame into imaginary thirds on both the horizontal and vertical axis. Then all you need to do is simply place aspects of interest at the points at which the lines intersect. However, don’t be fearful about breaking the rules and ignoring the conventions of composition. Yes you may have some awful failures, but you may just create a strikingly beautiful and amazingly original masterpiece. You really have nothing to lose, so be brave and experiment.
Timing is the Key
If you want to create beautiful landscape photography you will want to take into consideration the quality of light your photos are taking in. Because of this most and any decent photographer will tend to shoot very early in the morning or during late afternoons. You’ll find the sun is lower, there will be less contrast and will often display a more subtle colour palette of changeable hues. So for these reasons, the hours post dawn and pre dusk are described as the ‘magic hours’. Don't worry if you’re not a morning person, there are still plenty of great landscape opportunities that can be captured throughout the day.
If you want to create absolutely amazing landscape photography it is essential to experiment with slow exposures as these can be used to either optimize depth of field via the use of a small aperture or to capture smooth and mystic seascapes through the use of long exposure shots of the sea. The exposures you use can be seconds (instead of fractions of a second) long. Therefore a sturdy tripod is essential.
Focus on Focal Points
All good landscape shots require some sort of focal point and without this landscape photographs can result in looking rather empty and can leave your viewers eye wondering with nowhere to rest. Viewers will then generally lose interest quickly. You can find that focal points will take many forms in landscapes, which can range from a building or structure, or even an inspirational tree. You should also not only consider what the focal point is, plus the where too, that is where will you place it. The rule of thirds could be very useful here.
Work with the Weather
To create great landscape photography you need to consider the weather. It is so true that a scene can alter considerably depending upon the weather. Therefore choosing the most apt time to shoot is imperative. As a novice don’t fall into the trap of seeing a sunny day and assuming that it’s the best time to shoot. You may also find that an overcast day which threatens to rain might present a fantastic opportunity to create a piece of landscape photography embossed with real mood and ominous overtones. Keep an eye out for and make use of storms, mist, dramatic clouds, win, and sun streaming through dark skies, colourful rainbows, dramatic sunsets and inspiring sunrises. Make use of these inspiring variations in the weather, don’t just wait around for the next sunny blue sky day.
Make Use of Polarizing filters
In order to create great landscape photographs you should have a circular polarizing filter in your kit bag. There are many ways you can utilise the polarizing filter, but there are two extremely useful characteristics in regards to landscape photography, these are their capacity to cut out reflections and horrid glare from a shoot and the amplified colour strength, saturation and distinction they create. You’ll especially notice this great effect in clear blue skies.
Depend on Depth of Field
To create fantastic landscape photography you will want to aim to create as an image which looks sharp throughout the scene, in order for the elements of foreground interest appear just as sharp as the distant horizon. Via using the principles of depth of field you can achieve this relatively easily by using a small aperture, such as f/22. Another way to create this is by shots with a greater area both before and beyond the point of focus, which then also appear to be sharp. You can increase this even further with hyperfocal distance focusing. It is generally good practice when using small apertures to compensate with slow shutter speeds, so it is essential to (know how to) and make use of a tripod.