Travel And Scenic Photography 101

When you​ are driving through the​ mountains somewhere,​ & you​ notice a​ automobile parked half off the​ road & some guy leaning to​ the​ left to​ avoid a​ branch with his Rebel 2000 camera in​ the​ act of​ focusing,​ you​ have met me. I do this because,​ to​ me,​ a​ trip isn't fulfilling unless i have preserved that beauty for posterity. I'd like to​ share a​ quantity of​ the​ techniques that make scenic photography such a​ wonderful artform - simple,​ yet elegant.

First off,​ equipment. as​ much as​ the​ cheapo disposable camera beckons,​ get real. These cameras have fisheye lenses which I call "spam" lenses. we cram everything in,​ with equal blurriness & boringness. nice photos are sharp,​ unless you​ use blur for artistic effect. Sharp comes from an​ adjustable lens. it​ can be a​ fixed lens or​ a​ zoom,​ but it​ must focus specially for each picture. Fixed lenses are limiting for scenic pics,​ where to​ frame the​ shot you​ may require to​ move long distances. Imagine using a​ fixed lens on​ the​ Washington Monument,​ when you​ are half a​ block away! Zooms get my vote,​ even though we often don't have as​ wide an​ aperture,​ which limits their capabilities in​ low light situations.

Practically speaking,​ an​ SLR is​ the​ absolute best. we are lightweight,​ & can be used with top quality lenses. Film SLRs tend to​ be less expensive,​ but have the​ limitations of​ film,​ meaning you​ have to​ get it​ developed & so forth. Digital SLRs are VERY expensive,​ so for the​ budget conscious either go with a​ film SLR or​ a​ high quality basic digital camera. With digital,​ resolution is​ also a​ critical factor,​ so look at​ the​ specs before you​ buy.

OK,​ we have got the​ camera,​ emotions are jogging high,​ & that's great,​ but not great! sometimes I find a​ spot that's so wonderful,​ I start shooting like a​ madman,​ only to​ be disappointed by the​ pics. What happened? Emotions. When you​ experience a​ place,​ there are sounds,​ aromas & breezes as​ well as​ the​ visuals of​ the​ spot. Needless to​ say,​ you​ cannot photograph all of​ these elements,​ only the​ visual. When overwhelmed by the​ spectacle of​ a​ scenic hotspot,​ we are often overwhelmed by all of​ these elements.

Now,​ I was a​ tad dishonest in​ saying that you​ cannot capture all of​ the​ elements of​ a​ scene. you​ can hint at​ them. For starters,​ motion. Yes,​ even in​ a​ still picture,​ there's motion. Something happened before,​ during & after your picture. in​ a​ mountain vista scene,​ you​ may find something that hints at​ motion,​ whether it​ be a​ branch of​ a​ tree that has been swaying in​ the​ breeze,​ or​ a​ river flowing through the​ valley below. These add a​ sense of​ motion.

So what to​ do? Look through your camera. the​ viewfinder does not lie (usually). Try to​ see what you​ are looking at​ as​ the​ finished picture. Most people perfunctorily take pics,​ hoping that somehow the​ shot will come out great. if​ you​ wonder how the​ pics came out when you​ are on​ the​ way to​ the​ drugstore to​ get them,​ you​ are doing something wrong. at​ the​ moment you​ click the​ pic,​ you​ should know exactly what you​ will get. (Of work with digital,​ that's not a​ trick!).

Then there's the​ "rule of​ thirds." When you​ place the​ main object of​ the​ picture smack-dab in​ the​ middle,​ it​ is​ static & boring. Place it​ one third of​ the​ way from either side,​ & you​ IMPLY motion. Put the​ horizon in​ a​ landscape photo a​ third of​ the​ way up or​ down,​ not across the​ middle.

Remember,​ when a​ person looks at​ a​ picture,​ their eyes move. you​ require to​ frame your photo to​ help that movement. if​ you​ can find some lines in​ the​ scene,​ such as​ a​ skyline,​ cloud formation,​ path through the​ forest,​ etcetera,​ use it​ interestingly,​ & with the​ rule of​ thirds to​ draw your viewer's eyes into the​ picture.

Avoid "summit syndrome." you​ get to​ the​ top of​ Mount Washington & shoot the​ majestic vista. Great. the​ pics come out .. boring! How? No PERSPECTIVE. Big vistas will be flat unless you​ have an​ object in​ the​ foreground,​ such as​ a​ rock or​ a​ tree,​ to​ give them perspective. Then the​ eye grasps how big this scene is. People enjoying the​ view is​ a​ real winner,​ because the​ viewer may identify with their emotions,​ giving the​ image real impact.

Cheese! Yes,​ you​ do have to​ take the​ family photos. it​ is​ obligatory. But when you​ do,​ make sure that we show the​ location of​ the​ photo. Otherwise,​ you​ might as​ well do it​ on​ your driveway. Frame the​ scene in​ context,​ with landmarks as​ part of​ the​ picture. Find a​ way to​ tell as​ story in​ the​ picture,​ such as​ little Sara climbing up the​ rocks by the​ waterfall.

Finally,​ any element in​ the​ picture that hints at​ more senses than the​ visual will make it​ remarkable. Actor headshots for example,​ tell a​ story about the​ subject. you​ can hear them saying their next lines. if​ you​ photograph a​ garden,​ the​ viewer may experience the​ aroma of​ the​ flowers. a​ tourist street with an​ accordion player on​ the​ corner may have your amazed friends whistling "Dixie."

In summation,​ picture taking on​ travel is​ recording the​ experience in​ a​ satisfying way. Use motion,​ perspective,​ sensory,​ storytelling & so forth,​ to​ bring your photos to​ life. Oh,​ & needless to​ say,​ make your job easy & go to​ great places! See you​ at​ the​ overlook!
Travel And Scenic Photography 101 Travel And Scenic Photography 101 Reviewed by Henda Yesti on August 21, 2018 Rating: 5

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