Tag Archives: Landscape Photography

Spring Photography: Four Ways to Make Colors Pop

Spring is a wonderful time for landscape photography because bold colors begin to appear and nature’s winter doldrums are finally over. There are many editing techniques that you can utilize to make springtime colors truly pop, but why not do most of the work with your camera equipment? In fact, there are numerous ways to bring out brilliant colors without Photoshop. To get you started, here are a few easy-to-follow spring photography tips that everyone can incorporate into their photography outings!

Remove Distractions

Make the vivid colors of a new flower-covered landscape the focal point of your photo and remove unnecessary distractions from the background. You can accomplish this through proper framing or by changing your depth of field. For example, if there’s an unsightly sign poking up over the top of a hill, change your composition to eliminate it. As a rule, always eliminate the extraneous and only keep in the frame that which is necessary to tell the story of your image.

Practice Landscape Photography at the Right Time of Day

Do you want naturally occurring objects such as wheat and reeds to appear more vibrant? This can be easily accomplished by choosing the right time of day to take photographs. The beautiful glow that occurs daily shortly before sunset and after sunrise is rightfully referred to as the golden hour. Also be aware that backlight can add just the right glow to those reeds, flowers, etc.

Use Lens Filters to Even Out Colors

It’s difficult to fully showcase vivid landscape colors when your entire subject doesn’t have the same lighting conditions. Fortunately, you can easily correct this problem by utilizing a graduated neutral density filter. This helps correct exposure issues that occur when the sky is much brighter than everything else you want to capture.  Also, use a polarizing filter to decrease reflections and increase color intensity.

Choose the Right Color Balance

One thing that amateur landscape photographers often forget about is setting the correct white balance for their shooting conditions. Failure to get this right in-body will require editing in order to correct your images. Instead, simply choose the appropriate white balance setting for your lighting conditions. For example, if it’s a bright, sunny day, be sure to select the sunlight option. You can also manually pick a custom white balance setting for your landscape photography, but this requires practice and the right tools.

Learn More about Making Colors Pop in Landscape Photography

Professional award-winning photographer Jim Steinberg has been featured in numerous publications, including National Geographic. Now he offers workshops and photo tours to help other photographers of all skill levels. Learn to improve the colors, composition and every other aspect of your landscape photography by attending an upcoming session. Visit our homepage to learn more!

How Aspiring Photographers Turn into True Pros

Few things are more exhilarating than realizing that a beloved hobby can become a professional calling. Many established and successful photographers started off their careers as dedicated amateurs. But as with anything in life, there are pitfalls to watch out for and best practices to follow. If you’re ready to step up your game from a “labor of love” snapshooter to a “day job” professional photographer, here are a few things you need to keep in mind:

Always Be Prepared

Compliments from friends and family on your photos are great, but aren’t enough to seriously consider making the leap to paid work. If you’re serious about becoming a pro, your portfolio should reflect that. Clients want to see something of a similar quality to what’s published in magazines and on TV, which means that you’re not ready to launch your brand until you’ve taken a serious, in-depth look at both your skillset and your body of work. Better yet, a photography workshop or critique session with some local photographers (or failing that, an online community of professionals) will yield valuable insight on techniques you need to strengthen to be truly competitive. Additionally, portfolio reviews are generally available at many professional conferences. I do them regularly, both at conferences and as one-on-one private sessions.

On a similar note, a flashy website isn’t the guaranteed, client-grabbing solution that many think. Yes, your brand should be attractively displayed — but even the prettiest Web 2.0 facelift won’t help if you lack both the breadth and depth of technically proficient, aesthetically appealing shots.

Master the Fundamentals

You should be rock-solid in your core competencies — particularly lighting — before ever printing a business card. All too many aspiring photographers start branding before they fine-tune their craft. “Natural light” photographers often let their passion for natural lighting become an obstacle, and never learn the intricacies of using flash either in the studio or especially in the field. Sure, you can take stunning images in natural light — but a professional photographer can’t go on a shoot relying on the weather to cooperate with his/her artistic intentions.

Invest In Your Brand — Not Yourself

“Awesome!” you may think to yourself. “Now that I’m a pro, it’s time to go out and buy all that fancy equipment!” Don’t be so hasty — overinvesting in expensive equipment is a common pitfall for aspiring photographers. Expensive gadgets are no replacement for a deep knowledge of photographic principles, and every purchasing decision should be in your business’s long-term interests. Put down that single-use specialty lens and consider your basic setup first. It should always be remembered that the camera is nothing more than a tool. And as with all good tools, it is the operator that makes the difference.

That being said, don’t go too far in the other direction. If you’re an aspiring photographer and you’re serious about being paid for your services, having a minimum of one backup kit and lens is non-negotiable. The last thing you want is to be on a shoot (perhaps with a deadline) and see the dreaded “ERR-99” pop up on your only camera. There are many Internet guides that can help you balance cost with reliability — peruse a few of them and choose a second shooter, for both your business reputation and your peace of mind.

If you’re looking to turn your hobby into a profitable career, we can help. You’ll learn the basics of light and landscape photography from professional landscape photographer Jim Steinberg, and have the opportunity to network with other aspiring photographers. Visit our homepage today to learn more about our affordable classes, guided adventure trips, and wide selection of prints.

Do You Adore Landscape Photography? If so, Read on!

Whether it’s a career or a hobby, landscape photography is challenging, invigorating, and can be deeply gratifying. It requires technical expertise, creativity, a unique way of seeing the world a sense of play and both mental and physical acuity. Moreover, it can take you to some of the most beautiful destinations on the planet. Also, given how inexpensive many digital cameras are, it’s simple to get started as a photographer.

However, before you set out to explore the world and make photographs of it, ask yourself if this is truly the right path for you. For whom would you be creating these images? After all, there’s currently a glut of photographers, and consequently, this art form is full of repetition and banality.

Specifically, it’s wise to make sure that you’re not entering this area for one of the following reasons.

1. You’re Searching for Perfection

Some photographers become consumed by the idea of the perfect shot. They crave ideal lighting conditions and may only shoot when they think they have them. They need their animal subjects to pose just so. They have in mind an image that may or may not be there. In short, they have complete and very precise visions, and may get frustrated if any of their conditions are not met or their final product fails to meet those standards in even the slightest ways. In pursuit of their “vision”, they all too often fail to see what is right before their eyes and frequently miss other wonderful opportunities before their cameras. Their eyes may be open, but their minds are closed.

Obviously, striving for excellence is commendable. But seeking perfection at all costs is usually self-defeating. It can rob an artist’s work of joy and spontaneity. Plus, if you’re traveling the world, you might as well enjoy it. Instead of just laboring for faultless creations, then, it makes sense to spend time hiking, swimming, or taking part in whatever types of recreation you like.

2. You’re Looking for Something Completely New

Some photographers believe that they should avoid places that are photographic icons; and thus, they attempt to reach the remotest spots possible. However, without the appropriate gear and training being far from civilization can be difficult and hazardous, as well as expensive. Not to mention, some oft-photographed locales are especially fun to visit: Hawaii, for example. Why cheat yourself out of such thrilling trips if the images being made are primarily for you? In addition, even the most familiar landscape can be imbued with a fresh perspective.

3. You Desire Attention and Popularity

These days, some photographers are consumed by the size of their social media followings and by the number of positive responses that they receive from online “friends”. This compulsion can greatly hinder creativity. That is, some people will only take photos that they think others will like instead of heeding their intuition or making images that they like. As a result, many people stop taking chances. Clichés start to appear everywhere, and the entire field is diminished.

In short, the only sound reason to pursue landscape photography is that you adore it and can’t imagine yourself not doing it. If you’re committed to inventive — if not perfect — work, you’ll satisfy your artistic spirit, and you’ll earn real fans who are excited by your vision and originality!

Four Ways to Engage and Create Spectacular Landscape Photography

To make landscape photography more interesting, adding depth is important. Although this sounds tricky, there are some easy tips that help create depth within photos so that viewers enjoy feelings of realism. Onlookers will experience a true sense of the pictures and feel as though they were the ones capturing the shots.

Wider is Better

A wide-angle lens is a photographer’s best friend. It helps accentuate the foreground so that your picture has more depth and transports the viewer into the photo. Since it creates a dramatic perspective, a good quality wide-angle lens is a must-have for anyone practicing landscape photography.

Stand Tall

To exaggerate the foreground, it is common for a wide-angle picture to be shot from a low perspective. However, this stance minimizes the midground and results in a picture that fails to bridge the impressive foreground and striking background. Standing tall achieves the height necessary to stretch the midground and bring a connection that emphasizes the depth of the scene. It is a smart way to draw a viewer into a photo.

Elongate the Scene

Another way to add depth to a picture is with a telephoto lens. Although it is usually used to bring flatness to a scene or isolate a subject, it is a great tool that produces a natural frame. With a juxtaposed subject, a viewer will gain the feeling of looking beyond the foreground and will be able to concentrate on the background scene.

Use Layering Techniques

In nature, objects grow less distinct in the distance. Thanks to this optical phenomenon, it is important to establish a composition that emphasizes layers and patterns within a picture. For example, capturing a mountain scene with different ranges creates a layering effect with nice depth. The same outcome can be achieved at the beach with the ocean and distant shorelines. Controlling this type of overlap increases depth in an image.

Another way to intensify this effect is by uncovering a scene with plenty of atmosphere that makes the background seem to fade into the distance. Fog, smoke, and misty drizzle are excellent natural elements that help this work.

Pictures that have a good sense of depth are powerful and dynamic. The above tips will help a photographer turn a two-dimensional photo into a realistic scene that appears as amazing as it looks in person. Providing depth helps pictures come alive and brings great interest to all viewers.