Simple Ways to Improve your Landscape Photography
Great landscape photography isn't always about catching an extraordinary subject. Often, the appeal of the best landscape photography is that it is seen from an unconventional point of view or at just the right moment. Sometimes, the juxtaposition of the landscape with some other element in the photograph can make the picture truly spectacular.
When you set out to work in landscape photography, either as a hobbyist or as a professional, you might be concerned about how to get that perfect shot. So many things can go wrong with landscape photography, and some photographers wonder if they'll ever catch on. Framing is the biggest thing that landscape photography enthusiasts are worried about: finding just the right position can make or break the photo.
Lighting is another landscape photography foil. If the lighting is not optimum for your subject, you could end up with a flat and lifeless landscape photograph. Shooting large subjects from far distances always carries this risk, and usually the only thing that can improve the photo is waiting for lighting conditions to improve.
How to Improve a Good Shot
Even if you have a shot lined up that is already good compositionally, and the lighting conditions are just right, there are still a few things that you need to think about to take your digital photography to the next level.
First, use a tripod. Many landscape photographs will require a longer shutter speed, and holding your camera by hand just isn't an option because it will cause blurring. A tripod is your best friend when shooting landscapes because it can take a lot of uncertainties out of your shooting.
More on the compositional side of landscape photography, remember that an interesting foreground can make all the difference between a good shot and a great shot. A long-distance photo of a unique tree can be good, but a long-distance photo of a unique tree with an interesting object to fill out the foreground is even better. This gives the eye something more substantial to rest on and enjoy.
Finally, remember that some movement in a landscape photograph is a very good thing. Although you may think of landscape photography as strictly still-life, you can add a great deal of interest with a simple element like rolling waves or some fluffy clouds moving across the sky. The combination of stillness and movement creates an interesting offset which can greatly increase the quality of your photo.
Like any type of photography, landscape photography comes with many "rules" or guidelines that you are taught to follow. Don't be afraid to break these rules when doing so will create a more interesting image. Above all, don't forget that photography is about interacting with life and preserving your subjects - so have fun, and love what you do!