Guide to Digital Landscape Photography
Digital landscape photography is one of the most rewarding experiences in photography, as it offers a lot of experimentation. The ways of expressing landscapes have changed with new advancements and technology in the digital world. However, there are still a few basics that remain the same. Digital landscape photography produces stunning visuals of almost all forms of nature. Here are some guidelines to this innovative type of photography:
Step 1: Depth of Field and Shutter Speed
At times, your creative instincts may push you towards experimenting with a narrow depth of field. Remember, if you are serious about landscape photography, then you need to cover most parts of the scene you want to capture. Depth of field adds to the landscape and makes the use of objects more interesting. It is adjusted by using the aperture setting on the digital camera. The larger the number on the aperture setting, the greater the depth of the field.
Once the aperture setting is adjusted, you need to take care of the shutter speed. Since the aperture is small, the shutter speed needs to be increased to compensate for light. This technique is particularly useful when choosing landscapes that have movement, like wind blowing over fields and waterfalls.
Step 2: Focal Point
To take your eye into the landscape and keep it interested, you need a focal point for the scene you want to capture. A focal point in a landscape can be anything like a building, a tree, mountain ranges or even the sun. The focal point in an image draws the eye to itself, while making the background and the scene more eye catching.
Step 3: Foreground
This is a major player in any landscape photograph. If you do not or have not thought about the foreground, then your pictures may turn out flat with no depth to them. It is important to think about the foreground and also have interesting objects in the scene to capture the scene at its best.
Step 4: The Sky
As they say, sky is the limit to show your creativity in the arena of digital landscape photography. If you observe carefully, you will find that most landscape images place emphasis on either the foreground or the sky. If you want to capture the sky with unique and interesting cloud forms, then you can get great results with a lower horizon.
Step 5: Weather and the Golden Hours
The first rule in regards to weather in landscape photography is never shoot in bright sunlight. Light renders the landscape flat, dull and uninteresting. Therefore, it is best to capture landscape shots on bright cloudy days. During the golden hours, as suggested by the name, is the best time to take dramatic landscape photo shots. This includes sunset times and a little before sunset, when the sky has that golden, orangish color that makes the landscape interesting, with different patterns and textures.