Landscape Photography: 10 Tips to Achieve Excellent Photos

Every moment, nature provides an unending reserve of potential images. How often have we felt like clicking everything that our eyes can see, only because it was so beautiful that we wanted to share it with the world? That feeling is often what draws photographers to landscape photography. Landscape photography has vast potential. It is not restricted to nature but can include manmade landscapes. It includes astrophotography (capturing the moon, stars, and sky), urban landscape photography (also known as industrial photography or architectural photography) and even wildlife photography.

What Is Landscape Photography?

Landscape photography refers to images where the focus is on elements in nature or of an outdoor scene. These range from mountains, oceans and the sky to urban landscapes with skyscrapers, sidewalks, and factory buildings.

Objective 

Free of Rules

Low Investment

Notable Landscape Photographers

Skills and Equipment Needed for Landscape Photography

a photographer sits and taking a picture outdoor nearby lake

Image by Izzoh Mwendwa from Pixabay

Whether you are a beginner or a professional, doing landscape photography as a hobby or for work, there is some basic equipment that you will need.

Photography Skills

Editing Skills

Patience

Effort & Perspective

Equipment

10 Tips to Create Amazing Landscape Photography

man photographer with bright light

There a few tricks of the trade for making your images aesthetically pleasing. There are some important things to keep in mind while composing a picture. If you get these right, your images will be special.

1. Pay Attention to Light, Composition, and Color 

Many people think that bright light is needed for good, clear pictures. But it depends on what you are capturing and when. Often, you will have to wait for the light you need. And your camera’s aperture, shutter speed, and ISO will give you the exposure you want. Compose your frame carefully. Use the rule of thirds. Decide which elements you want in the frame and which ones are unnecessary. Try different angles for another perspective.

Nature provides you with an abundance of color during sunrise, sunsets and at night. You can shoot during the Golden Hours (dawn and dusk) for perfect lighting and color. Choosing to shoot in black and white can enhance the texture, shapes, and contrast in your images.

2. Create Depth

man holding a canon camera looking at captured image

Image via Pexels

Use a smaller aperture setting to maximize the depth of field in your image. Your pictures will stand out if you include all the different elements in your field of vision well rather than zoom in on one particular thing.

3. Focal Point and Lines

If your picture has too many important objects or no focal point at all, the viewer’s eye will wander all over the picture. Use a tree, mountain, bird, rock or something solid to hold the viewer’s gaze. Natural lines in nature that are created by mountains, rivers, trees or light in the forest work to guide the viewer’s gaze through your image and rest on the focal point. It's helpful to use the 'rule of thirds' for placing your focal point. Separate the image into thirds horizontally and vertically and try to position your object of focus within those thirds.

4. Capture Movement

lady using a camera with lens and tripod

Image via Pexels

If you are clicking flowing water, for example, you can capture its movement by using a little longer shutter speed. You will need good light to capture movement so use a smaller aperture setting. But if the light is too bright, you can use a filter or shoot at another time of day when there is less light.

5. Use the Weather 

It is not necessary to only use bright, sunny days or dark starry nights to give you good landscape shots. An upcoming storm, wind in the trees, mist, rain, rainbows and other variations of weather provide a great setting for landscape photography.

6. Check the Foreground and for Unwanted Elements

dslr camera placed on top of wooden railings with mountain background

Image by Sebastian Mies from Pixabay

When you place your focal point in the foreground, it helps lead the viewer into your image. You must also avoid cluttering your frame with too many elements so that viewers won’t know what to look at.

7. Use Wide-angle Lenses and a Tripod

Wide-angle lenses are best for landscape photography. These give you greater depth of field and allow you to use faster shutter speeds. Wide-angle lenses give the effect of large, open spaces, something we look for in landscape images. Tripods give you stable, clear shots.

8. Use Photographic Filters

Man wearing a backpack full of photography gear and he is holding his camera to took a photo of a beautiful landscape mountain view

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

There are two important filters you need to use while capturing images. A polarizing filter will darken the sky and bring out the contrast between the clouds and other elements. A neutral density filter prevents too much light entering the camera. This is required when the sky is too bright or when you want to capture movement.

9. Focus on What You Are Capturing

All the technical details, light, textural elements and foreground depend on what you are capturing. These will change if you are clicking a mountain, a stream, a plant or lightning. Focus on exactly what you want to shoot and choose the camera settings and other conditions accordingly.

10. Break the Rules

Photographer together with his tripod and camera is taking a photo of a landscape view of the mountains

Image by Günther Schneider from Pixabay

Landscape photography allows you the freedom to do what you want. The above rules may make it easier to compose and click a picture but it is not necessary to adhere to them each time. Sometimes, breaking the rules will give you a great, unique picture. It is just important to know the rules so you are able to break them for the desired effects without spoiling the photo.

Conclusion

Landscape photography lets you explore nature and share its beauty. It lets you travel and enjoy the outdoors, the different seasons and the various wonders of nature. Besides all this, the most important thing that shooting landscapes will teach you is to see the extraordinary in simple beauty.

Often the weather conditions will not be conducive; you may have to hike a long distance or wait in anticipation of a storm that may never even come. But the final result that you can get from landscape photography will be worth all your efforts.

Featured Image: Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

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