Landscape Photography Photo Hint - Get Better Sunset Photography With Shapes!
Today's landscape photography photo tip will continue our discussion of how to create beautiful sunset photography.
Formerly, we discovered the pretty colours are not enough. A star is needed by a winning sundown photo. Now let's add shapes to get better sunset photography.
In previous articles, we've mentioned that the star could be an interesting palm tree, a seagull flying by... basically anything! The magnificent colors are the backdrop to our star, not the focus of the photo.
But (as in our regular non sunset landscape pictures) the best star is an individual! People like looking at folks! You'll get the viewer more readily participated in a photo - any photo - where there are people being shown.
In a sunset photograph there is two ways to put in a man. In silhouette showing no element and normally revealing full detail.
Now's sundown photography photo trick will discuss including a silhouetted individual. Or actually anything - the principles are valid regardless of what your 'star' is. Done well, the outcome can be one of the very exquisite pictures you may ever create.
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When adding a silhouette, the key element to keep in mind is that you are adding a contour, not a man (or bird or tree). Your shape will soon be pure black with no detail.
In sundown photography, getting the shape that is black that is pure with no detail is actually quite easy. In our previous discussions, we have learned that if we take our meter readings from the sky - everything else in our sundown photo will go black. Ta-daaa!
Previously, our concern was to bring detail into the dark areas - now we just have them go dim.
So to put in a shape, the first step would be to meter from the sky, not the man. Your camera will make a mighty effort at setting an exposure to reveal detail should you meter from the person.
In other words, you need to take the camera off automatic - meter for the sky and then re-compose to set your 'star' in the right position in the photo.
The 2nd concern we've got in adding a shape is really more challenging to get right.
Remember, you're adding a shape and everything but the sky is black with no detail. Including the ground. When you add your shape, it's to 'read' correctly.
By 'read' I mean that when someone looks at your photo, they must certanly have the ability to instantly tell what it really is. In case your subject is standing in front of another item, like a palm tree, stone or whatever - the (black with no detail) shapes will combine together and distort the image.
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This notion is hard to put in words but easy to understand. I'm certain you have seen photographs where the shapes mixed together and neither appears right. Someone with a palm tree growing out of their head, a palm tree using a seagull's wing sticking out of the trunk and so on...
Be sure that there's nothing intersecting with your silhouetted shape.
This consists of the ground... The bottom half is lost in the ground although often I see silhouettes where the top half of the model is in silhouette. You might have to shoot up at your star from a marginally lower vantage point to prevent this type of blending.
The third factor to consider is the shape itself! Not only do you have to be on the lookout for your shape not reading right because it combines with others, it can combine with itself too! Arms crossing in front of the body or hanging (with no openings) along the sides, legs together and so on.
The pose is critical, to get a productive shape! Even more so than in a normal photo of the man. The reality that she is a girl that is pretty doesn't matter in this situation. In a silhouette, no one is going to be able to tell what she looks like.
Take photo examples out of magazines and color them using a black magic marker. Would that model 'read' and be effective if that was all you could see of the person?
Hats and other clothing could dramatically alter the form and look bizarre in silhouette. In silhouette, it looks like demon's horns sticking out of her head, although it may look like a tiara in the wedding pictures.
Study various poses for their shapes and find several you can use when you are making silhouettes. Add them to your notebook when the specific situation appears, so that you will always have them at hand.
Silhouettes are not only effective in sunset photography, but at weddings. Pose the couple in silhouette in front of a stained glass window for example. Or in the door of the church from outside silhouetting them together with the light.
Training today's landscape photography photo hint by including shapes on what steps to take to to get better sundown photography. There are numerous times when a shape is just the thing you must separate you from the crowd, its worth learning how to do them well. A