Landscape Photography Strategies
We'll continue our review of landscape photography hints and techniques today. Add these ideas to your landscape and cityscape photographs and you will start winning photo contests! It's nearly a given!
We discussed light yesterday.
First we discussed the color of light... You need to get up early in the morning and begin shooting in the 20 or so minutes before daybreak. AND you also need to keep shooting for about 20 minutes or so past sundown.
At those times there's a happening we'll call a 'bogus' dawn and sundown that may create some absolutely stunning colours in your landscape and cityscape photos.
Next we talked about the angle of the light... Think of bodybuilder pictures. The light is coming from about 90 degrees to the subject. This creates lots of shadows that define their muscles and emphasize.
At twilight and dawn, the glancing light from the sun is at an ideal angle to make plenty of defining shadows. This can add a great deal of third dimensionality to your photographs and make them come alive!
Attempt shooting the same scene at both morning and dusk, then compare the results to the exact same scene shot at noon. You'll never sleep in again!
Next we mentioned when there are clouds in the sky, shooting. This can add lots of visual interest to the scene - as well as lots of colour. Now the setting or rising sun has something to bounce off of! When the weather is awful... Get out there! That is the time you will get the best shots.
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Today, let's add a couple more landscape photography hints and techniques.
Utilize a tripod! When shooting landscapes, particularly in the daybreak and post sunset times - you will need an extended exposure! (Creating an acceptable depth of field needs shooting at minimal apertures - which means long shutter speeds.) Do not even think of attempting to get a competition winner by shooting handheld. It won't occur.
Afterward, use the mirror lockup feature if your camera has one. Most of the better DSLR cameras do.
For the ultimate in photo sharpness - in addition to locking up the mirror, use a shutter release that is timed. These sharpness techniques can and do make a significant change, although it may seem like a bit of overkill.
Pay attention to the foreground as far as composition is concerned! Use it to attract on the audience's eye into the photo. Use leading lines, framing, diagonals and so forth.
Another compositional component to consider is the horizon, make it level! What's the most crucial component in your landscape or cityscape photo? Is it the sky? If so, put on the lower third of the shot. Is it the ground? Place in the upper third.
While there are times that putting the horizon in the middle is the correct call, they're uncommon. Make sure you are in possession of a specific reason to do that!
Last but not least... Make sure your photo has a 'star'. What brought you to the scene? Make certain that characteristic is accented by you and drive the audience's focus to it. Don't make the error of attempting to make the entire scene equally significant. You require a star.
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I expect this review of landscape photography hints and techniques will allow you to start getting competition winning landscape and cityscape pictures!
In the excitement of the moment, it really is simple to forget to do some of these admittedly basic but vital landscape photography hints and techniques (there are more coming tomorrow)...
Here is your assignment - start to compose a checklist (of these and any other landscape photography tips and techniques you can think of), have it laminated and put it in the side pocket of your camera bag.
Each time you are shooting, you can pull out your landscape photography hints and techniques checklist and will not forget anything! Eventually you'll get the landscape photography techniques needed to let your artistic side shine through!