Digital photography of trees can become some of your best pictures once you follow the tips in this two-part PhotographyTalk.com article. Part 1featured the first five tips; the remaining tips are below.
6. Include Another Focal Point.
An isolated tree or a group of trees may offer a number of interesting digital photos to take, but adding a person or object as a secondary or complementary focal point can create an even more dramatic image. Position yourself opposite the edge of a dense forest on a misty or foggy day. Your picture is apt to look virtually black and white. Have someone run along the edge of the trees dressed in red or another bright, solid color and your tree picture becomes immediately more dramatic. Lean a set of long tree pruning shears against the trunk of a tree to create a different effect. Ask a child to reach for an apple on a low-hanging branch, which could be shot front lit or backlit as a silhouette.
7. Find Uncommon Views.
Regardless of how creative you can be, full-view digital photos of trees are quite common. It’s the uncommon picture you’re after. This may require that you climb the tree, climb a nearby tree, stand on a roof, use a ladder or find some other high angle. Use your widest-angle lens or rent a fisheye lens and shoot from your back below the tree.
8. Accent with Color.
The two best seasons of the year to capture digital photos of trees at their most colorful is the spring and fall. During the spring, the green buds erupt and then flowers and fruit follow. Do a little scouting to find an orchard or a park with heavily flowering trees. Not only can you shoot pictures of the complete tree in bloom, but also take close-ups of individual buds and flowers. Look for flowering trees with berries too. Then, check various sources to determine the prime period of leaves in their fall colors. You can create some interesting contrasting photos by shooting the same tree or branch during the spring when it flowers and during the fall as the leaves turn.
9. “Ground” Your Tree Photos.
Digital photos of that isolated, single tree generate more interest when you include a substantial portion of the surrounding open ground. Turn your camera to the portrait view. Then, stand various distances from the tree and place its top near the top of the frame to show the ground between you and the tree. Turn your camera to landscape view and place the distant tree near the right or left edge of the frame. The view of the area in front of and past the tree into infinity will give your picture more depth and emphasize the tree’s isolation.
10. Look for the Dappled-Light Effect.
One of the tips in Part 1 of this article explained how to use light to help you take better digital photos of trees. Sometimes, nature provides the best lighting conditions. The dappling of light is an element in the allure and mystery of the forest, as the light filters through the high canopy to the lower parts of the trees and the forest floor. Look for that effect, especially on sunny days deep in the woods. You’ll want to use a tripod and remote shutter release and shoot at slower shutter speeds to capture dappled light.
Take these ideas with you into the fields and woods. You’ll look at trees differently and discover the many amazing digital photos you can take when you know the tricks.
Photo by PhotographyTalk member Rosemary Burnell Hyser