Smug Mug: Top Autumn Photography Hacks02/10/2013
The days are starting to shorten and the green leaves of summer have begun to turn and fall, which is the perfect time to get that striking landscape shot. SmugMug, the independent photo sharing site popular with professionals, has compiled its top 10 photography hacks on how to achieve that perfect landscape shot, whether you are a professional photographer or a novice.
1. Explore your surroundings – Part of the enjoyment of landscape photography is being out in nature and spending time exploring and observing your surroundings to get the lay of the land and to find those secret spots.
2. Get in position – Once you’ve found your spot, find out where you should shoot from to get the best results. Working out where the sun will rise and set, and the sun’s position in relation to you and your landscape, will help you to capture that perfect shot.
3. Try another position – After you’ve got your shot, get closer to the subject and try again. Proximity will make the subject strike you in a different way.
4. Think of your foreground – One element that can set apart your landscape shots is the foreground. By placing points of interest in the foreground, you allow those viewing the shot a way into the image as well as creating a sense of depth in your shot.
5. The rule of thirds – If you’re new to landscape photography, try using the ‘rule of thirds’. Simply divide your frame into imaginary thirds on both the horizontal and vertical axis. Now simply place areas of interest at the points at which the lines intersect, or along one of the lines. This will give the composition of your shot more tension, energy and interest than simply centring the subject would.
6. Scale – When shooting a mountain, or a body of water, add a sense of scale by including something of known size, such as a person, tree or animal. This will help the viewer understand the scale of what they’re viewing.
7. Preparation is key – Rain or snow can be hazardous to your camera, but it can also make for a great picture. Make sure you always carry a good umbrella, a box of plastic bags, a small tarpaulin and a towel with you to ensure your equipment doesn’t get damaged.
8. Layer up – Add multiple layers to your composition beyond the main subject, such as foreground and background elements to create interest, depth and texture.
9. Golden hours – Always try to shoot before sunrise or after sunset as these are the times when the light is best. Use the harsher light of midday to scout out your location.
10. Do your research – If you are staying in one place for several days, be sure to check the long-range weather forecast and plan your shoots around the weather that is best for specific subjects.
Once you’ve mastered these photography hacks and snapped the perfect Autumn shot….don’t forget to share it with the world!