I’m starting to get there! I’ve my beginner’s tips, the basics of perspective and light, a lesson in nature shots, my new camera, and now today, we learn about landscapes, from the fabulous Through Niks Lens…
Plan your location in advance, especially if its a location new to you. You will want to know where all the scenic spots are before you set off, so that once you’re there you have more time to get into position and start capturing.
Think about timing. Sunrise and sunset are the best times of day to capture really beautiful landscape. But it also depends on the weather and light, check the weather forecast beforehand, you may want an overcast to add a dramatic effect.
To find your perfect position you need to be on the scene, not just a passer by taking a few snaps. This means your need to leave the parked car or footpath and explore the land to get to the base or higher viewpoint to capture the real beauty.
Before you begin to point and shoot, take a moment to visualise the final image you’d like to see. Too many photographers rely on post editing tools, but if you pre visualise, use the correct camera settings and the right image is taken, this will reduce any post editing you may do.
5. Focal Point:
Every image needs a focal point and landscapes are no exception, whether it be the sunset, a boat on the horizon, striking hilltops or rocks in a stream, they would look rather dull without one. Think about a focal point, which when looking at the final image, will be a resting place to the eye.
6. Point of View:
Never be content with that first image, move around to different points of view, new angles and height levels. It doesn’t matter how many different images you capture of one particular scene, these can always be deleted later and sometimes the best images turn out to be the ones you least expected.
Using a tripod isn’t essential but is ideal, you don’t want any camera shake. Using the camera’s self timer or remote control is also useful, just pressing the shutter to take a photo or a windy day can cause an unwanted shake.
8. Depth of Field:
Depth of field is the range of sharpe focus, in front of and behind your main focal point. For Landscape photography you will want to ensure you maximise your depth of field, so your image is in full focus. Setting your camera on a lower aperture, such as f/22 or f/32 (lower the aperture is higer the f/stop number, higher the aperture is lower the f/stop number) will bring all foreground and background objects into focus.
Most landscape photography is rarely still, whether its birds flying, waves on a beach, wind in trees or a waterfall, you may want to capture that movement in an image. Which means you will need to adjust your camera settings to a longer exposure, meaning a slower shutter speed to a few seconds. This is when your definately need to use a tripod.
10. Rule of Thirds:
In the rule of thirds, images are divided into thirds by using imaginary lines both vertically and horizontally, giving you a grid of 3 rows, 3 colums and 9 boxes to use as a guide as you look through your viewfinder to take your image. Using this rule will help you to place points of interest along, or near to the 4 lines as they cross. With landscape photography this helps to make sure you have the horizon straight and on one of the third lines, rather than completely dead set in the middle.
Thanks so much, Nik! Brilliant top tips!
If you’d like to link up your landscape shots with me, as we learn, feel free….