Landscape Photography: September 2014 Photo Tips

August 28, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

Landscape Photography:

1. Look for bad weather with great skies before a storm as well as the post storm quiet. This gives you freedom to go beyond the golden hours of predawn and dusk. Protect your gear with a shower cap or just dry off with a towel when done shooting. After the StormAfter the StormOcean waves cashing on a rock with seagull, waves and cloudy skies. Walk after the RainWalk after the RainRoad along cane fields with puddle reflecting a dark storm cloudy sky at dusk.

Even rainy days can present unique opportunities. Try shooting through your windshield for a unique blurred water look.

Rainy DayRainy DayThru my car window at Good Harbor Beach during a rain storm.

2. Trust your instinct. If a site looks inviting, explore it further looking for angles and the direction of light to enhance the effect you envision. Walk around. Apps will help you predict sunrise, sunset and moonrise. I recommend TPE, The Photographer's Ephemeris.   Here is a link to a good review of Shooting the moon with help from this app.

3. Learn to tell a story or awaken the viewers imagination. Look for a strong element in the foreground to anchor your image, mid ground to balance and give direction, while choosing a background that will tie it all together and set the stage. Summer, Good Harbor BeachSummer, Good Harbor Beachsummer beach scene with house on the rocks , seagrass and water. Good Harbor DuskGood Harbor DuskDusk light over an ocean beach with an inlet waterway.

4. Capture an impression of what you see using light, movement and all your camera settings. Control of aperture and shutter speed (actually shutter duration) will provide the necessary tools if you take control. Supplementary fill flash of the foreground may be helpful to add interest to the foreground. Adding texture or other painterly effects can help.

Guardian of Cape CodGuardian of Cape Cod

5. HDR (High Dynamic Range) is another tool you can utilize to show the full tonal range of an image. By capturing multiple images in rapid succession in aperture priority with a fixed aperture but with varying Shutter Speed you can produce an image that your eye can see but the camera cannot yet capture effectively in one shot. Set up for 3 to 5 exposure bracketed shots (each varying by one f stop for under, correct and overexposed images) on Continuous High with a tripod or steady handhold. Process these images in Photoshop with merge to HDR, NIK HDR Efex Pro or Photomatix Pro.
Old IrelandOld IrelandOld stone structure or ruin in a wildflower and grass field in Ireland with dark stormy sky.


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