Travel and landscape photography.

Sunrise Mount Fitz Roy (aka Cerro Chalten) and waterfall seen on Lago de los Tres hike, El Chalten, Patagonia, Argentina

Travel and landscape photography.

Understand all the important aspects of photography, landscape and sea view! This “big” tutorial comes from a series of articles I wrote for “PiX” in 2013. Technical and creative aspects of tourism and landscape photography; From choosing the best place to find the best light, it also includes camera equipment, Settings and creative skills…

Learning landscape photography

Walk out of here! Find the best place.

Ansel Adams said: “when god is ready to let people click on the shutter, I sometimes get to the place. I believe this is the most important key to landscape and travel photography. Rule 1: where you need to go! You can only photograph your own backyard many times! So not everyone can become an international travel photographer, but through some research and exploration, you will be able to find a picturesque landscape near your home. Even if you live in a city, you can always photograph the cityscape. You can also plan to visit the countryside or scenic spots around weekends and holidays. Here are some tips for finding the best place:

Read books about areas you plan to photograph, such as guidebooks and even books on local architecture.

Make sure that your visit is in the right season, that is, if you go on a Namaqualand trip in winter and miss the floral carpet, it won’t help!

Sleep in beautiful places, cut off half way to your destination, and then take pictures there.

Book the beauty of the hotel and hotel.

Visit the town to your destination, talk to the locals, take photos, and include some local landmarks in your work.

Check local attractions and dig up local knowledge.

When you go out to photograph a picturesque village or city scene, get up early, avoid people being irritable, and have more benefits when the light is soft.

Stay close to the “upper phase” for quick access.

To walk less; Take alternative routes, not highways.

See if you can “work” the same area at least twice. I always grab my best picture, and the second time, or return visit.


01 – landscape photography

“Letty” this frank shooting was along the road in the countryside. Walk less and find interesting scenes with people.

Shoot with intent…

Professional landscape and travel photographers often adhere to specific themes or projects. Focusing on a single topic will help you to show a collection – the subject of a work – which may be more important than the “scattered” images that have a small amount of cohesiveness in your portfolio. That said, I’m not saying you shouldn’t ignore it once in a lifetime because it doesn’t fit your current project. Shoot this, but when you go out and shoot the scenery, you have a destination to do. Plan your trip, study your topic, and check in advance where you will be visiting. Planning, research and more than one visit to the same site will ensure greater success.

“The Marula Veld in Limpopo province,” this HDR image is part of my African tree project, a signed photograph of my first solo show in 2010. Since then, I have continued to join my Africa Tree series, and now I have an important job. Iso-100 is in f / 22. Use a tripod.

Safety first

Photography is not worth your life. Here are some safety tips you should consider when traveling:

Don’t go “unsafe” yourself. If possible, always bring a companion, or a group of people who share your interest in photography.

It is vital to have a reliable service vehicle roaming. When you’re outside the countryside, you can’t afford to fail. If you go out 4x4ing always go to the motorcade!

Keep in touch with the outside world. If you visit remote rural areas, your phone may not have a signal. If this is the case, please bring a two-way radio or satellite phone.

Always get a decent flashlight, and I suggest you release your hand like an LED Lenser high-end headlight. Cape Union Mart and other travel shops in South Africa have LED lights.

Be sure to use spare batteries for essential equipment such as mobile phones, two-way radios or flashlights.

Keep necessary equipment such as mobile phone and flashlight in waterproof zipper bag.

Wear appropriate protective footwear.

Part of the dress. If you come to a hot area, wear long sleeves and loose white clothing. For colder regions, the opposite is true!

Hats, sunscreen (factor 30 and above) and sunglasses!

Always wear spare warm clothes. Even if you’re not going to be late.

Make sure you have water, always!

Explore light and themes.

Successful landscape photography relies on optical lines. At the right time, at the right place, it’s critical. If not, then waste your time. Professional landscape photographers like to shoot in prime time. During the day, when the light is harsh, they use time for reconnaissance and management. When the sun appears at a favorable Angle, they look for scenes they can return, and the color is even more magical. If you’re a regular Joe, you may not have the luxury of taking photos when you’re on vacation with family or friends. The family will let you “rush” your picture. Use the time you spend with them during the day to find places to visit. During the day, you can snap back the sunlight quickly to avoid wasting time and offending travel companions! Spend the day – when the light is harsh – stay with them, but keep your prime time! Shoot the sunrise before your family gets up, and keep busy during the day.

The light of work.

“Light makes photography. Embrace the light. Appreciate it. Love it. But most importantly, know the light. Knowing all of your value, you will know the key to photography. “George Eastman.

Knowing how to “read” light is the most important key to photography, especially landscape photographers. When photographing landscapes and scenes, you need to find a system to “illuminate” and let the light (and shadows) work for you. The key is to take the scenery in prime time, everything is bathed in the warm light, the shadow cast soft and long. With such brilliance, directed light photography, let you capture mood and atmosphere. Use light and shadow to turn your landscape into artwork!

03 – landscape photography

The last lamp that falls on the edge of the quiver tree at sunset, the giant namibian giant, makes a simple picture magical. The iso-100 is in f / 16. Use a tripod.

Shoot dawn and sunrise.

The morning light is usually clean and the air is still. You want to install and start filming before dawn, long before sunrise. Make sure you are there, at least an hour and 45 minutes before sunrise, and use a low-speed shutter to “drink” the ambient color. The color of the sky at dawn is usually beautiful, often called the blue hour of the morning. Before you know it, the light will shine on the horizon; Especially in the absence of clouds. I suggest you use the ND-Grad filter to cover the bright sky in the dark filtering area. You can also change your Angle of shooting and completely exclude the highlight area. During sunrise, which usually lasts only a few minutes, you usually need to capture the backlight scene and capture the orb of the foreground elements in the scene. In cloudy and foggy days, bright lights may be subdued, allowing you to take longer pictures.

29 – landscape photography

“Sunrise, matmo, mozambique”

The lake of fire

“Hot lake, Hartebeespoort dam” sunrise image, backlight shooting. Tip: set the white balance of the camera to “cloudy” or “shadow” to further preheat the scene.

05 – landscape photography

“It’s always a good idea to have a backlit tree, middlesbrough, pumalanga, to hide the ups and downs, or the sunset behind the backward lines. Tip: when shooting high contrast scenes like this, chromatic aberration usually leads to serious image quality problems. If your camera has lens aberration control, be sure to enable it. If not, Lightroom and Photoshop provide lens correction tools that can handle it.

The side light drama

If the sun is completely out, but still low, direction, use side illumination. Side lighting shows great depth and drama, which is the first choice for many professional landscape photographers.

06 – landscape photography

“Baobab and low sun, limpopo” provides depth and drama with directional and lateral light.

Front lighting

Avoid the bright white sky in the scene. When the sun gets too harsh, turn around. In other words, stay away from the sun (sun-at-your-back-rule). Frontal lighting is often referred to as “flat light”, but it is useful for capturing details. Use a circular polarizer filter to care for glare and reflection, and to keep the color in the sky.

07 – landscape photography

“The wreck of the diamond coast” we often call the sun “flat light,” but because the clouds are often washed away, it’s not a good idea to get into the high sun. To take this picture, I used a circular polarizer to increase the color and contrast to maximize the color in the sky.

Sunset and dusk

Be sure to be ready at dusk, at least an hour before sunset. In the morning, the air and sky are clean, and later in the afternoon, they often carry dust in the atmosphere, causing “warmth” and a magical sunset. If the sun starts to cast these long shadows on you; You are entering the paradise of photography! Use side and backlight during this period. Don’t tidy up when the sun is behind the horizon. The fun is just beginning! Soon, you’ll get the blue hour of the night. Now it’s time for a long exposure and light. After dark, you can increase exposure time and use light bulb mode to capture star trails!

The wrecked boat, the island of Matemo.

The sunset scene at matmo island in mozambique was filmed at sunset. The island of matmo is located in the highest part of mozambique. When you are near the equator, the light is not as soft as the lower one. In cloudless days, you usually fight with intense light even before the sun sets on the horizon. Situations like this require a ND gradient filter and place the black part of the filter in the bright sun.

09 – landscape photography

“Cape, western cape” this long multiple exposure is taken in the blue hours of the evening and presents a series of wonderful colors. Purple and orange tones are usually found at dusk and dawn.

Shooting at dawn or dusk…

First-time photographers are often excited when they are exposed for the first time before sunrise or after sunset. During these periods, the colors of purple, orange, pink and blue are amazing, we call them dawn or dusk. In addition, color and light can be captured before sunrise or after sunset, with neither full daylight nor complete darkness. We call it blue hours. The blue hour shooting requires a low-speed shutter, and any movement in the clouds and oceans can be blurry in a surreal way.

10 – landscape photography

“Kommetjie seascape, west cape” for this impressionism – creative blur – landscape, I moved the tripod, and the camera was still exposed to the scene. This picture was taken after sunset, and even after the sun has been submerged in the horizon, it can still see the light and color still available. ISO-100, 2 seconds in f / 7.1.

Description of lighting type

The backlight is very dramatic! Create dramatic silhouettes with backlighting and scenes unfolding before your eyes.

The backlight is very dramatic! Create dramatic silhouettes with backlighting and scenes unfolding before your eyes.

Once the sun rises, the sky turns white in front of you, turns around and shoots at the sun. Use circular polarized light to deepen the blue sky.

Once the sun rises, the sky turns white in front of you, turns around and shoots at the sun. Use circular polarized light to deepen the blue sky.

When the sun’s light is low and the direction is strong, side lighting can be used.

Take the side lighting scene in the low light of the sun and sculpt the scene with interesting light.

It’s cloudy and cloudy.

We all know that cloudy and cloudy days are often the best portraits. Those gray and dreary skies are rarely used for glamorous scenery. However, on a cloudy day, all the elements on the ground are soft and scattered, so you might as well put down the camera Angle and shoot “mini scenery”.

Also, be sure to look for interesting patterns of light when the sun shines through the clouds. Bright, cloudy days usually don’t produce the “upper” sky, and you want to avoid the bright skyline altogether. In the fog, shoot soft images and silhouettes. Use preheat or magenta filter to add life and color to the scene. If you like minimalism, grey skies may work; If you have a dark, positive cloud why don’t you take HDR? The point is, on cloudy days, you don’t want to pick up your camera.

11 – landscape photography

“Feathers in rocks, pumalanga province” is a cloudy, cloudy day. When the sky is overcast, tilt the camera down and take a mini view. The color and texture of the rain are great.

The tree photo was taken by dany. Pumalanga, South Africa.

“In the pine forest near Cape Town” I filmed this low-key scene in a hazy day. I expose the camera to expose the fog, creating a truly dramatic, almost ghostly atmosphere. You almost expect an axe man to jump off the tree!

13 – landscape photography

“Mpra power station, pumalanga province,” I actually dug out the sun through the clouds, and added an interesting composition, which was the juxtaposing between the hay bales and the back plants.

Creative camera Settings

“Virtual” Settings.

As a landscape photographer, you can use several standard Settings for the “most” scenario. However, if you really want to be creative, you need to have a good understanding of how all elements of the exposure triangle work together. Knowing which combination of ISO – shutter speed – aperture is used to control depth and blur – is the most important aspect of two landscape photography that will give you a head start.

14 – landscape photography

Use creative techniques such as double exposure and motion blur to allow artistic end products. This image is a combination of different technologies that move the camera to the vertical plane in the light of exposure, vertical translation and multiple exposures. A deep understanding of how the exposure triangles work is critical to creating an artistic image.


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