How to Take Vertical Landscape Photos
- A circular polarizing filter that helps cut down on glare, reduce atmospheric haze, and increase the contrast of the sky and clouds.
- A graduated neutral density filter that helps even out the exposure between a dark landscape and a bright sky.
- A set of solid neutral density filters that allows you to slow down the shutter during the daytime to blur the movement of clouds, water, and so forth.
When we look out at a landscape with our own two eyes, we perceive it on the horizontal axis.
So it makes sense that when we photograph those same landscapes that we automatically default to shooting them horizontally.
And while that horizontal view is just fine, there are times when turning our cameras to the vertical axis results in a much better photo.
That being the case, here are a few essential landscape photography tips that will teach you how to take vertical landscape photos.
Landscape Photography Tip: Divide the Shot Into Zones
To get the strongest composition, it's a good idea to divide your photo into zones - foreground, midground, and background.
Then, ensure that you've got something of interest in each of the three zones.
Not only does this help you create a well-balanced image, but it also helps you to help move the viewer's eye from one part of the image to the next.
For example, notice how there are distinct zones in the shot above - the golden foreground grasses, the dark green trees in the midground, and the bright swath of light in the background.
Each area is distinct, yet the are also interconnected to create a compelling visual experience.
How to Take Vertical Landscape Photos: It's All About the Angle
One of the greatest benefits of shooting in vertical aspect is that it allows you to include more foreground in the shot.
And since the foreground is what helps draw the viewer's eyes deeper into the image and toward the main subject, including a foreground rife with detail will only do your landscape photos a favor.
To make a real statement with the foreground, get down low and close to a foreground element. Learn more about outdoor photography guide on our website PhotographyTalk.com.
In the image above, taking a low shooting position looking upward makes this waterfall seem larger and more powerful.
What's more, the closeness of the boulder in the foreground highlights its size, shape, and color, as well as the texture of the plants growing on it.
Landscape Photography Technique: Embrace Negative Space
One of the great things about shooting vertical aspect photos is that it allows you to emphasize the height of the landscape.
And a technique that you can use to highlight that verticality is to incorporate negative space at the top of the shot.
In the image above, you can see this concept at work.
By placing the horizon very low in the frame, the photographer is able to highlight the size and scope of the sunset above.
Though there are times when it behooves you to get up close and take a shot that fills the frame, as you can see, doing the opposite can result in a fine photo as well.
Landscape Photography Gear Tip: Use Lens Filters
I'm all for using the likes of Lightroom and Photoshop to enhance my photos, but if you ask me, there's nothing better than using filters to get the look you want in your images.
Besides, as powerful as post-processing photos have become, they still can't match the quality that good filters, like those from Formatt-Hitech, can give your photos.
In fact, every photographer (yes, even beginners!) need a set of filters that will help them enhance their photos. These include:
In other words, having high-quality filters enables you to get better shots, and more creative ones as well.
I utilize Formatt-Hitech filters because they are precision-crafted to give me images that have excellent contrast, color fidelity, and sharpness, without all the ghosting, flare, and other aberrations that you get with lower-quality filters.
When you're shooting vertical landscape photo (and horizontal ones, too!), do yourself a favor and increase your chances of a great shot by using Formatt-Hitech filters.