- Beginner Photography Tip: How to Create Dramatic Landscape Photos
- How to Take a Photo From Blah to Beautiful in a Matter of Minutes
- Luminar Review - What You Need to Know About Luminar 3
- Easy Workflow for Amazing Landscape Photography
Photo by Max Rive
If you aren’t quite satisfied with the quality of your landscape photos, don’t fret…
There are about a million landscape photography tips, tricks, and techniques you can rely on to improve the quality of your photos. The tips I outline below are no exception!
I’ve hand-picked these tips because they’re easy to implement, yet can have a profound impact on how your landscape photos look.
Without further ado, let’s get to it!
EASY LANDSCAPE PHOTOGRAPHY TIP #1: FIND THE BEST SPOTS TO PHOTOGRAPH
photo by GoranQ via iStock
I know this sounds like kind of a “duh” tip, but it really is important to find spots to photograph that are (1) beautiful and (2) haven’t been photographed to death.
Sure, the Tunnel View at Yosemite (shown above) is a drop-dead gorgeous scene, but everyone that’s ever been to Yosemite has photographed it. That doesn’t mean you should skip it, but what it does mean is that you should strive to find a different point of view to create a more unique photo.
photo by 4kodiak via iStock
The image above offers that unique perspective on the same location.
Not only does this shot tick the box for having beautiful scenery, but it also isn’t nearly as popular a spot as Tunnel View. That means your photo will stand out more in the ocean of landscape photos taken each year.
Quick Tip: Look for scenes that have elements that move (i.e., a river or waterfall), bodies of water for reflections (like a still lake), or elements with texture you can highlight in the foreground (i.e., grass or rocks). Any of these elements will improve the visual appeal of your photos that much more.
Easy Landscape Photography Tip #2: Chase “Bad” Weather
photo by primeimages via iStock
Though shooting photos in the rain, snow, wind, and other elements might not be the most fun, those elements can help you create beautifully impactful landscape images.
For me, bright, sunny days are great, but I prefer the look I get in my images when there are dramatic clouds that add interest to the sky, fog in mountain valleys to add a bit of mystery, or wind that kicks up the surf when I’m taking photos at the beach.
photo by ImagineGolf via iStock
You don’t need to go out and chase huge tornadoes to reap the benefits of weather, either.
Just a little fog here or a few thunderclouds there, and you can create landscapes that wow!
Easy Landscape Photography Tip #3: Add Something Man-Made
photo by franckreporter via iStock
I know plenty of landscape photographers that shudder at the thought of incorporating man-made elements into a landscape photo. After all, it’s supposed to be a landscape shot, right?
I disagree, though.
I think human elements add a richness to landscapes that can make a scene more interesting.
In the image above, for example, the church has interesting architecture, shapes, and colors that elevate the quality of the shot. I also like how the height of the church mimics the height of the mountains in the background.
photo by Andrey Danilovich via iStock
You can use human elements to create a more harmonious shot as well.
In the example above, the boat dock and line of boats act like a leading line to connect the foreground and background. As a result, the image not only has more visual appeal, but it also has improved depth and dimension.
Quick Tip: If you don’t have a church or a line of boats handy, insert a person into your landscape photos for instant appeal. Adding people gives context to the shot and also helps viewers understand the scale of the scene.
Easy Landscape Photography Tip #4: Make Processing Images an Easier Task
People that know me know that I’m all about efficiency. I have too many things to do to lollygag around!
That’s why I’ve spent years developing a quick-fire post-processing workflow that minimizes my time in front of my computer and maximizes my time out taking photos.
The thing is, as awesome as my workflow was, I’ve found an even faster workflow that produces even better results.
My new routine starts and ends with Luminar 3.
What makes Luminar 3 so easy to use is that it has tons of features that turn tasks that would take minutes in other programs into tasks that take mere seconds.
That’s thanks in part to a host of pre-built Workspaces that have common filters to address certain types of editing. That includes a Landscape Workspace, Portrait Workspace, Black and White, and a host of others.
There’s even a “Quick and Awesome” Workspace that has the tools to significantly enhance your photo in seconds.
The image above shows the original RAW file on the left and the edited version on the right. It took me about 20 seconds to adjust the six sliders, and if you ask me, the photo is massively improved.
Luminar 3 doesn’t stop there in the “quick and awesome” department…
There are a number of different presets (Looks, as Luminar calls them) that are a powerful way to enhance your photos in short order.
In the image above, I applied the Blockbuster Look from the Dramatic Looks collection.
As you can see, adjusting five simple sliders resulted in an image on the right that has a totally different, much warmer look than the original image. Again, using this Look took just seconds.
Luminar 3 also has a variety of filters you can use to easily improve the quality of your photos.
Above, I used the Black and White filter to completely alter the mood of the shot.
And though this filter has many more individual controls than the Workspace and Look I used on the previous examples, I still only invested about 60 seconds to perfecting the shot just how I want. You can see just a sampling of the filters in the menu shown to the right of the photo in the screenshot above.
I think you get the point…
I've found that Luminar 3 is fast, easy to use, and has an intuitive layout that’s easy to learn.
There are no recurring fees, either. It’s $69, a price that gets you lifetime access!