Spacious Thoughts: Landscape Photography and Seeing the light


In the first spacious thought, I discussed and suggested equipment for those starting out in landscape photography. I also had a nice gift guide for the Holiday season. Good landscape artists take time to think about their shot and its lighting, location, and composure. Pointing and shooting leads to shots that looks similar to everyone else’s out there. Landscape photography, like various things, is like the game Civilization V, you must think first before you move. Some of the most important things to contemplate in landscape photography are lighting, time of day, sun position, and weather. When these factors are combined they affect how you set up your image exposure.

Time of Day

Landscape photography lighting is uncontrollable because it is always in flux. Capturing the right light at the right time of day can be a major factor in the mood and determining how dramatic your landscape photo is going to be. Light is something that can only be managed with patience because it not only changes with the seasons it changes with the time of day.

Sun Position

The rising and setting sun can add warmth to your images as well as effect the direction of the light. Light direction will affect how shadows will fall and how texture will be seen. The position of the sun changes during the year so a little research and planning is very important to successful landscape photography. Knowing when and where the sun will rise or set, or what the weather will be in general, can help you plan out your photography and decide the time you want to set yourself up to create your image and the right light.

Weather

In setting the scene, the weather is just another actor in the play. If you take the time to prepare, no weather can stop your landscape photography. One must consider and take time to understand how the weather is affecting the environment. Doing this will allow you to assemble the proper gear to cover your camera. You can figure out what to wear, where to stand, if you are going to need water etc. Watching the weather forecast and preparing can lead to truly distinctive images.

Exposure

This can be one of the hardest parts of Landscape photography. Finding the right balance between the sky and the ground or water, getting all the details you see, just right and captured in the image can sometimes be a challenge. One of the best ways to check if you have the correct exposure is to use your histogram. A histogram is the graph on your camera which looks like mountain peaks that represents the tones of the image. In the histogram, you want to look for a good spread of tones and peaks through the middle of the graph ensuring proper colors.

Color

In landscape photography, you want two things when it comes to your colors; contrast and harmony. Lighting and exposure settings help you achieve this in landscape photography. Contrasting, like blue and orange, helps to make your landscape photography more dramatic while harmonious colors, like green and blue, give a nice tranquil affect to your landscape images.

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Gevon Servo

Gevon Servo aka @GServo is an eclectic, NJ/NY Photographer. He’s a Nikon shooter, by choice nevertheless, will always test any piece of photography equipment. He believes that like ‘Photography’, ‘Coffee’,’Beer’ and ‘Comics Books’ and other things ‘Geek’ “You must try everything once to discover what you want to try again.