How to get ready for Landscape Photography
Landscape photography probably is the most popular genre as an art. We all want to take beautiful pictures of our environment and showcase them in the form of prints or on social media.
For landscape photography we need to look in to 2 categories, Light and Camera settings. I will cover both of them in this article.
Prepration for Landscape Photography
Light is the most important part in any kind of photography, especially in Landscape Photography. The best time for scenery photography is sunrise or sunset. During Sunrise or Sunset, the light is directional and creates longer shadows. The longer shadow creates a sense of Depth in the image. Our brain automatically adds the third dimension, which makes the image more beautiful.
Sunrise or Sunset Photo
Sunny Day Vs Overcast Day in Mid Day Photography
If it is not Sunrise or Sunset and you want to use mid day light, which one is better, Sunny day or overcast day?
It all depends on your location and what you want to express. I usually like clear days with a little bit of clouds. Here you can see samples:
Bright Sunny Day
For Landscape Photography using a tripod is the best practice as a tripod stabilizes the camera to avoid camera shake. I know that using a tripod is a pain and needs lots of patience, but your effort and patience will be rewarded when you see the fabulous results.
Hand holding the camera
What if you forgot to take your tripod? Or there is no time for setting up the tripod. What would be the next best thing?
This a very common question that I was asked in many workshops and it needs a good discussion. To make it short, I suggest to use a platform, such as a rock, a tree trunk, etc to keep the camera as steady as possible. If you need to hand hold the camera, make sure that you have some sort of Image Stabilizer on your lens or camera body, and keep an eye on your shutter speed. generally speaking the shutter speed should match the lens focal length and not slower than 1/60sec. to avoid camera shake.
In Digital Photography Bootcamp I discuss many different techniques in Landscape Photography and camera handling.
Keep the Camera Steady
In most Landscape Photography cases, The sharpness and details are the key. Using the lowest possible ISO is a must, so set the ISO as low as you can to maintain the sharpness and the Dynamic Range. Also we need a wider Depth Of Field to expand the focused area. Therefore we need to set the Aperture to a higher value, for instance f11 or f16.
If you are shooting in Aperture Priority (A or AV), the camera will set the shutter speed automatically. Whether you shoot in Aperture Priority or fully Manual, keep an eye on the shutter speed, especially if you’re hand holding the camera. If the shutter speed is not fast enough, try to increase the ISO to set the exposure. This another good reason for using a tripod, so you don’t need to increase the ISO unnecessary.
Using High Aperture and Low ISO to capture more details