Landscape Photography Strategies
Now we'll continue our review of techniques and landscape photography tips. Add these ideas to your landscape and cityscape photographs and you'll start winning photo contests! It's almost a given!
We discussed light yesterday.
First we discussed the color of light... You must get up early in the morning and begin shooting in the 20 or so minutes before daybreak. AND you have to keep shooting for about 20 minutes or so past sunset.
At those times there's a phenomenon we will call a 'fictitious' sunrise and sunset that may create some absolutely beautiful colours in your landscape and cityscape photographs.
Next we talked about the angle of the light... Consider bodybuilder photos. The light is coming from about 90 degrees to the discipline. This creates a lot of shadows that accent and define their muscles.
At dusk and dawn, the glancing light from the sun is right at an ideal angle to produce a lot of darkness that are defining. This will definitely add lots of third dimensionality to your photographs and make them come alive!
Try shooting the same scene at both dawn and twilight, then compare the results to the same scene shot at midday. 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 - in addition to a lot of colour. Now the setting or rising sun has something to bounce off of! When the weather is lousy... Get out there! That's the time you will get the best shots.
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Today, let us add a couple more landscape photography tips and techniques.
Make use of a tripod! Post sunset times and when shooting landscapes, especially in the daybreak - you'll require a long exposure! (Creating an acceptable depth of field demands shooting at minimal apertures - which means long shutter speeds.) Don't even think of attempting to get a contest winner by shooting handheld. It will not happen.
If your camera has one, then, make use of the mirror lockup feature. Most of the better DSLR cameras do.
For the ultimate in photo sharpness - in addition to locking up the mirror, make use of a timed shutter release. It might appear like a little overkill, but these sharpness techniques can and do make a big difference.
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 on.
Another compositional element to think about is the horizon, make it level! What is the most important component in your landscape or cityscape photo? Is it the sky? If so, place on the lower third of the shot. Is it the ground? Put the horizon in the upper third.
While there are times that putting the horizon in the middle is the correct call, they are rare. Be sure you are in possession of a certain reason to do so!
Last but not least... Ensure that your photo has a 'star'. What attracted you to the scene? Make sure that characteristic is accented by you and drive the viewer's focus to it. Don't make the blunder of attempting to make the whole scene equally important. You will need a star.
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I hope this review of landscape photography hints and techniques will help you begin getting competition winning landscape and cityscape pictures!
In the delight of the instant, it really is simple to forget to do some of these true basic but essential 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 hints 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 tips and techniques checklist and won't forget anything! Eventually you will get the landscape photography techniques needed to let your artistic side shine through!