A polarizing filter is one of the most essential tools in a landscape photographer’s bag. It is typically the first filter landscape photographers buy to instantly improve their pictures by adding vividness and contrast to them. In this article, we will go through detailed information on polarizing filters, what they do, why they are important and why you should consider using them for your landscape photography.
If you like taking landscape photos at night, you’ll surely be familiar with one of the main challenges: successfully focusing on the stars. Often, you can’t use autofocus, since there isn’t enough light for your camera’s focusing system to lock onto anything. Unfortunately, even manual focus doesn’t always work, which means you may need to use some out-of-the-box techniques to make it work. This article goes through some of the most useful tools that you have at your disposal.
Utah has never been high on my list of places to visit. Having grown up in an arid, dusty landscape (northern Pakistan), I always gravitated towards greenery and the ocean. A couple of things happened that gradually changed that sentiment. First, as my interest in landscape photography grew, I kept encountering striking images out of Utah (and the Colorado Plateau in general). Then, along came an HBO series called “Westworld”. Shot primarily in that part of the country, the show opened my eyes to some truly stunning high-desert, Mars-red, weirdness-popping out-of-the-Earth scenery. Finally, a flight from Denver to Southern California on a crisp day with clear views of this otherworldly landscape below, provided the push I needed to mobilize and visit this place.
For landscape photography, most of the time, you’ll end up using your camera’s base ISO. That’s the power of a tripod; it lets you set long enough shutter speeds to capture a bright photo, even in dark environments at low ISO values. However, settings like this do not work for all images. Sometimes, depending upon the landscape, you’ll need to raise your ISO in order to capture a successful photograph. This article dives into the most common of those situations.
Composition is critical. If you want to take powerful photos, it’s one of the most important parts of photography. Still, a lot of photographers start out only hearing about the rule of thirds, and they never go more in depth. The good news is that you can learn more about composition — and you should. It’s a deep topic, and there’s no way to cover everything in just one article, but I’ll do my best to hit the biggest points here.
I’ve heard a lot of “hidden tips” for landscape photography over the years. Most of them weren’t helpful at all. But, along the way, I have collected a handful that really are useful — nuggets of wisdom that I still use today, and that I recommend to other photographers as often as possible. I’ve included the five most valuable hidden tips below. Perhaps you’ve heard some of these before, but I hope that at least a few of them will be completely new.
It’s something we all care about, right? Sharpness. As a landscape photographer, with very few exceptions, taking sharp photos will be an important part of your work. That’s why you’ve spent so much time learning about the technical side of photography — and so much money buying high-quality camera equipment. This article covers everything that matters if you want your landscape photos to have as much sharpness and detail as possible.
Perhaps you read our composition tips for landscape photography and realized something interesting: It never mentions the rule of thirds. If you aren’t familiar with this technique, you’re rare — the rule of thirds is, by far, the most common rule of composition you’ll find in photography. But does it actually work? Can it really improve your images? The truth is more complex than you may think.
The deeper you go into photography, the more you realize that everything is about emotion. Each decision you make — every single part of your thought process — matters for that one reason. A prominent example? Positive and negative space. These two elements of photography are important because of the emotions they carry. So, what are positive and negative space, and how can you use them to improve your work?
Shutter speed is one of the most important settings to know as a photographer. It doesn’t get any more fundamental than this. To be specific, shutter speed is the length of time your camera sensor (or film) is exposed to light — essentially, how long your camera spends taking a photo. As simple as this sounds, though, shutter speed has an enormous influence on how your images appear. The two biggest effects are exposure and motion blur. I’ll cover them here.