- A Guide to Lens Filters for Absolute Beginners
- Photography Gear That Can Totally Change Your Landscape Photography
Let's face it...
A lot can go wrong when you photograph a landscape. And I mean a lot.
And mistakes aren't just for beginners - I've been behind the lens for a long, long time, and I still make plenty of bad landscape photography mistakes.
Fortunately, you and I aren't alone in our struggle.
In the video above, Benjamin Jaworskyj outlines some of the most common mistakes that people make when photographing landscapes.
Have a look at what he has to say about bad landscape photos and learn how you can turn those mistakes into successes!
For a few more details on some of Benjamin's tips, keep reading below.
Landscape Photography Mistake #1: Shooting Under Poor Lighting Conditions
As the sun rises, moves across the sky, and sets, the value of its light changes.
That is, some points during the day offer excellent light for landscape photography while others don't.
Bad lighting is one of the common culprits of bad landscape photography, yet it's so easy to avoid this mistake.
On the one hand, you can shoot during the best time for great lighting - golden hour - which occurs at sunrise and sunset, as seen in the two images above.
Golden hour lighting is soft, even, and warm, and sheds glorious light across the landscape and sets the sky on fire with colors.
What's more, since the sun is so low on the horizon, golden hour also offers up wonderfully long shadows that add depth and dimension to your landscape photos.
Unfortunately, it's not possible to take every landscape shot during golden hour, which means you have to find ways to overcome the challenges of bad lighting, like that which you find during midday.
Midday light is very harsh, has cool tones, and can cause reflections off of things like streams and lakes.
But with a circular polarizing filter, you can overcome those obstacles.
Polarizing filters not only eliminate glare, but they also reduce atmospheric haze that's often prevalent during the daytime, as seen in the photo above.
Not only that, but polarizing filters will also boost contrast in the sky, that way the blue color of the atmosphere is deeper and the white of the clouds is brighter, as seen below.
It is for these reasons that a polarizing filter is one of the best accessories for landscape photography.
It can help you create more dynamic shots, even when you're forced to work with harsher lighting.
That's especially true if you opt for a high-quality polarizer, like the ones available from Formatt-Hitech.
These filters are made using Schott Superwhite glass, which is among the finest glass available on the market today.
Combined with its multicoating technology, that gives you a filter that will be durable and offer impeccable performance, leading to improved photos.
Landscape Photography Mistake #2: Relying on Post-Processing to Fix Mistakes
Post-processing your images using programs like Lightroom or Photoshop is a great way to enhance your photos to make the most impact.
But where you can go wrong with your landscape photography is getting into thinking that those programs are to be used to fix your mistakes rather than as a way to enhance what's already good about the photo.
There's something to be said for slowing things down and taking your time in the field so that you minimize errors and get the best possible shot in-camera.
Not only does that help you learn how to utilize your camera to get the best shots, but it also saves you time from sitting at your computer trying to fix everything wrong with it.
In that regard, think of post-processing not as a savior for bad photos, but as a process you can use to make them even better than they already are!
Landscape Photography Mistake #3: Forgetting the Foreground
One of the keys to having an impactful landscape photo is to have a strong subject that draws the attention of the viewer.
That being the case, it's sometimes easy to forget the "supporting cast" of features that make for a great photo.
One of the most important supporting features to have in a landscape shot is the foreground because it acts like an introduction to the shot.
Not only can the foreground give the image much-needed detail like texture, but it can also help you create an image that has more depth to it.
In this example, you can see how the inclusion of more foreground than background helps bring you into the shot.
The colors and textures of the grasses give context to the scene, and help move your eyes toward the big red barn in the middleground of the photo.
Foreground elements can be just about anything, too. Plants, rocks, leading lines, colors - you name it!
By incorporating these elements in the foreground, you'll set yourself up for a much more visually stimulating photograph.
Taking gorgeous landscape photos doesn't have to be overly complicated, nor do landscape photography mistakes have to keep you down.
With these landscape photography tips for beginners, you can learn how to avoid those mistakes and focus on getting the best possible images with your camera.
Be sure to check out Benjamin's full video for even more tips on how to avoid bad landscape photography mistakes.