Last Updated on 10/10/2012 by Gevon Servo
In observance of the passing of summer I am now thinking about and working on autumn images: one of my favorite things for some odd reason. It was a dry summer. While we got some rain in the north east of the United States, many were not so lucky. This dry weather led to leaves starting to change color early. Fall is a great part of the year to explore colors and textures. Every year is a different experience, as the weather shows us. I try to use everything I can to create new and different autumn images keeping them ever changing like the weather. Here are some tips to help you do the same.
Using the Past As a Starting Point
Remember you cannot make a good photo without a good foundation of knowledge. Keep the rules of thirds, metering, and lighting in mind. Furthermore look at your old images. Experience is a great teacher. Do not reproduce your old work, this is key. Every fall is an opportunity to apply what has been learned in the past year as well as using any newly acquired gear . For example this year is my first year doing fall photography with a full frame camera as well as with some new manual lenses. The Nikkor 50mm E and the Nikkor 105mm 2.5 AIS. I tend to not stick with one lens. Nor should you. Changing lenses always gives you a nice new perspective on things. When you have new lenses in your arsenal, you should try them all.
Let the Light be Your Guide
Light is the most important part of fall photography.Its direction can completely change the composition of a shot. Its intensity can alter colors. Usually I shoot with natural light, and the more light there is, the better. This year, though, I have learned to appreciate an off camera flash. It gives me so much more control. The most important thing I learned when using flashes was to use modifiers. My favorite light modifier is the Rogue Grid which put the light right on my subjects. This also has help me pull out much more detail in my images, especially shooting at f22 with a macro lens.
It is in the Details
The great thing about fall photography is the ability to shoot wide expanses of scenery or the closest of macro shots. Either way you are going to need some stabilization to help get detail in your image. For me, a lot of my photography was improved by the use of quality desktop tripods like the Magnesit Copter and the Ultrapod II Their smaller height and size gave me new perspectives to shoot from. It was also great having a nice light portable tripod, which helped me get to far off areas without the extra weight on my back. These tripods helped me keep my camera still keeping the tiniest of details sharp in new ways. Of course I carry a normal tripod these days I carry my Oben AC-1400 weather its to hold my light to get a leaf or to get a huge landscape.
Keep Your Eye on Everything
While experimenting and working on your fall photography keep your eyes open. You never know what you will miss if you are only focusing one subject. Do not just focus on leaves. There is a lot more going on in the fall. People will be changing how they dress. The weather will be cooler with the days becoming shorter. Sunrises will be later while sunsets become earlier. Animals are fattening themselves up for the winters or preparing to lay their eggs for the next generation to be born in the spring. Take in everything around you, and a shot will appear.
When it is All Said and Done
Relax, use fall photography as a way to gauge how your photography has progressed over the year and if you are in an area where winters can be brutal use this as your last chance for comfy photo-walks. Challenge yourself do create unique images while having some fun. Also remember simplicity rules, don’t over complicate things. Be well, if it gets cold , stay warm, and if a freak winter storms hits, be ready.
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